Winter weather will affect ‘Sophomore Alley’ parking

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Signs of Winter: RBHS experienced its first significant accumulation of snow last weekend. Students walked through it toward their parked cars in ‘Sophomore Alley.’

Graham Ratermann

Signs of Winter:  RBHS experienced its first significant accumulation of snow last weekend. Students walked through it toward their parked cars in ‘Sophomore Alley.’
Signs of Winter: RBHS experienced its first significant accumulation of snow last weekend. Students walked through it toward their parked cars in ‘Sophomore Alley.’ Photo by Mikaela Acton
Because of the winter months and the unpredictability of Missouri’s weather, Columbia everything to prepare for winter storms. This fall, the City Council of Columbia, Mo. amended an ordinance designating first and second priority snow routes which made it that anytime snowfall is above two inches on roadways vehicles can no longer be parked on the street, according to Public Works Public Information Specialist Stephen Sapp.
Public workers placed signs on these roads last week, and one of the streets receiving the new signs is Executive Drive, otherwise known as “Sophomore Alley.” The new policy will allow snow removal crews to work more efficiently, he said.
“Last year we learned during our first snowstorm where vehicles were parked and abandoned all over the place. It took us 28 hours to clear the first and second priority roads alone,” Sapp said. “During the second snowstorm when we didn’t have those parking issues we found that it took us seven hours to clear first and second priority roads and then move into residential areas.”
If a situation arises where school is still in session and Sophomore Alley hasn’t been cleared yet, students parking there face a potential $15 citation handed out by snow removal crew or immediate towing. This leaves students in a tough position either risking a ticket or parking somewhere else like the RBHS parking lot.
“I would just risk a ticket. I wouldn’t park in the lot because all the upper class would hate me and it would be hypocritical if I did park in the lot and then next year hate the sophomores for parking in the lot if I did it,” sophomore Clara Brand said. “If the snow is bad, and we can’t park in the only acceptable place to park, I don’t know where we would be supposed to park.”
Since the law is in its first year in effect Sapp said there would be more leeway this year as Columbia Public Work’s attempts to raise community awareness.
“Our goal is really not to go out and start towing vehicle’s left and right especially this first year,” Sapp said. “Our goal is to really educate and gain people’s understanding and willingness to voluntarily move their vehicles.”
By Graham Ratermann