RUTGERS:

THE LAND OF WAL-MART PARKING LOTS

Another major RU1000 proposal: elimination of the vast and ugly parking lots that make so much of the present Rutgers campus look like one large Wal-Mart parking lot.

Although all these acres of litter-strewn blacktop are depressing, RU1000 members pointed out, the most depressing of all is the parking lot that occupies the Old Queens quad. It exists solely to provide the SUV's of staff and adminstrators a handy parking place, but at the cost of defacing the oldest and loveliest area of Rutgers' original colonial campus.

The plaque memorializes the ground from which Alexander Hamilton's horse artillery protected the ford of the Raritan during Washington's retreat to Trenton in the Revolutionary War. Plaque placed by the Rugers class of 1899.

Though all the remaining parking lots should be jackhammered up and built on and planted with grass and trees, said the RU1000, the Old Queens parking lot that should be at the head of the list.

The "Wal-mart desecration" of Rutgers' colonial history. Staff parking lot in Old Queens quad.

A subsidiary proposal: to provide parking for faculty and staff who think they absolutely need to use Rutgers as a parking place, a 5-story parking garage should be built in the location of the large parking lot that now lies between College Ave and Union Street. Its existence as a parking lot should be hidden from the outside by an outside brick wall extending to the top of the structure, planted with ivy on the campus side. Examples are the Johnson & Johnson parking lodge and the Prospect Street parking garage at Princeton.

"Wal-Mart" parking lot that now dominates the area by Old Queens from which Hamilton covered Washington's retreat.

The Prospect Street garage is an especially good model for the "greening of College Ave" project. The parking garage on the inside of the Prospect Street lot at Princeton is large enough to accommodate the total number of cars that currently clutter the Rutgers campus on four major lots: the Old Queens quad "Wal-Mart" lot, the "grease truck lot," the lot behind Murray Hall, and the lot that so disfigures the campus between College Ave and Union Street.

To see the effect of a Prospect St-type model for Rutgers, simply take a look at these pictures of , first, what passersby on the campus actually see as they walk down Prospect Street in Princeton, and, second, the ugly "invisible" Prospect Street parking garage as hidden by the ivy-covered brick wall .

(1) what people walking down Prospect St. street actually see. What people walking down College Ave at Rutgers could be seeing

 

(2) Prospect St. garage as it "invisibly" exists behind the ivy-covered wall. The only people who see this eyesore -- unlike at Rutgers, where Old Queens quad has been covered over with asphalt to supply employees with parking spaces-- are those who actually park their cars in it.

Picture 1 shows what students and visitors to Rutgers could be seeing if a similar garage and ivy-covered wall were put in place in the Union St-College Ave location. Picture 2 shows a structure that could "invisibly" accomodate all the automobiles that blight the campus on the Old Queens parking lot, the Grease Truck parking lot, and the Murray Hall parking lot.