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Campus News in Brief

Tepper optimizes Oakland meter parking

The use of parking spaces, the ones near Schenley Park in particular, fluctuates with the seasons. Many parking spaces, which cost $2 per hour, often go unused.

Mark Fichman, associate professor of organizational behavior and theory, and Stephen Spear, professor of economics, are spearheading a project to help optimize the use of parking spaces by allowing the parking rates to depend on the time of year.

The cost of the parking spaces will be $1 per hour during times of the year when parking is freely available and $2 per hour during the busier seasons. Through research studies, Fichman and Spear will monitor parking meter usage in order to determine which seasons are busier than others.

According to a university press release, the two Carnegie Mellon professors will use economic principles to research the “ideal” rate.

Fichman said in a university press release, “Ideally, slightly more than three quarters of available parking spaces should be utilized during normal business periods.”

“A few years ago, when parking rates were 50 cents per hour, it was difficult to find an open parking space around campus,” he continued.

Fichman contrasted this with the current situation, adding, “when parking rates rose to their recent high of $2 per hour, many commuters quit using the street parking all together. The ideal rate is somewhere in between these numbers.”

Architecture professors given NSF award

Carnegie Mellon’s School of Architecture and the Center for Building Performance and Diagnostics (CBPD) won the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) 2013 Alexander Schwarzkopf Prize for Technological Innovation for its research and contribution to technological innovation.

The winning team, which consisted of Carnegie Mellon architecture professors and researchers, was selected by the Industry/University Cooperative Research Center (I/UCRC) Association Committee.
Volker Hartkopf, professor of architecture and director of the CBPD, led a team that also included architecture professor David Archer (who passed away in 2010 at 82); senior researcher Azizan Aziz; architecture professor Khee Poh Lam; Head of the School of Architecture Stephen Lee; and architecture professor Vivian Loftness.

Carnegie Mellon’s CBPD’s most notable work this year includes the construction of the Robert L. Preger Intelligent Workplace (IW) in 1997.

According to a university press release, the IW is the premier living and lived-in laboratory focused on energy, the environment, economics, human health, organizational productivity, and building systems integration practices.

The Alexander Schwarzkopf Prize is a prize awarded annually to provide the recipient with opportunities to partner with other leading universities, and also with recognition as an NSF research center so that it may gain access to additional resources.