Low ceilings?

Ricky Soltero

Many students have said the ceilings of the new parking structure on 17th and C Street “are too low,” but administration said it meets construction guidelines.

Once inside the parking levels, the clearance height is 6 feet 8 inches; while the average height of a sport utility vehicle is approximately 6 feet 3 inches.
Several students voiced their concern over the ceilings because they could be easily reached with little or no effort. Other students said they are afraid emergency vehicles will not be able to access the higher levels of structure if needed.

“Honestly, I wouldn’t think (an ambulance or fire truck) would be able to gain entry to the parking garage,” student Jonathan Bustos said.

Student Jen Wheeler also said, “the ceilings are really low,” and does not believe most vehicles will fit through the structure.
Similar responses were given by other students.

Campus Project Manager Tom Fine said the parking meets all state laws and designs were approved before the beginning of construction.

“The parking garage was designed to comply with all building codes and standards that regulate the industry,” Fine said. “The state reviewed every (drawing) and each detail of these documents. The design was approved for construction.”

When responding to allegations that the construction company was asked to rebuild the structure, Fine said there was never a request to do so.

College Police Sgt. Jordan Mirakian said it would not be standard procedure for emergency vehicles to drive up the parking structure, he assumed medics would go on foot to attend a person in need.

“The garage is designed in such a way that all ADA parking spaces and emergency vehicle access points are located on the first level,” Mirakian said. “The entrances to the garage are designed with enough clearance (approximately 14 feet) to allow these vehicles to enter and park there.”

“The federal code for ambulance height requirements is that they do not exceed nine foot two inches, so with a clearance of 14 feet there is ample clearance for emergency vehicles to enter the garage,” Fine added.