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Formerly free parking near Arts Annex turned into fire lane and permitted parking

Free parking around Duke can be quite difficult to come by. It just got more difficult.

Visitors will no longer be able to park on the street near the Arts Annex for free. Gattis Street, near the Arts Annex, was previously open for the public to park without cost. 

This semester, however, the side of the street closer to campus buildings—the Laundry Building as well as the Arts Annex—became a fire lane, and the other side is available for parking for those with a Yellow Zone pass. 

A map of Gattis Street by the Arts Annex Stefanie Pousoulides

The Yellow Zone pass costs $207 per year, and employees are eligible to hold it and park at “various” locations, according to the Duke Parking and Transportation website.

Carl DePinto, director of Parking and Transportation, wrote in an email to The Chronicle that the decision was implemented to limit overcrowding on the road and allow for better access for emergency vehicles. 

“We have received various complaints about access on the street based on an abundant amount of vehicles on both sides of the road,” he wrote. “We confirmed that emergency vehicles would not be able to get to the building and as a result installed signage to limit overcrowding and allow for proper access.” 

Jake Satisky

As someone who lives off campus and finds the $423-per-year Blue Zone pass to be too expensive, senior Nina Wilder often parked on Gattis Street during Fall 2020 because of its close proximity to a bus stop. 

Wilder received a $200 ticket Feb. 4 for parking in the newly-deemed fire lane. She said that she didn’t see the fire zone signage because it was blocked by a car and foliage.

“People didn’t double up on the road until they started curtailing the number of spots available,” she said. “I will have paid for a Blue Zone permit in parking tickets by the end of this year.”

Editor’s Note: Wilder is the Recess Editor of The Chronicle.


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