North campus parking-permit fees to rise

By Jill DiNucci

A recent announcement from the University Transportation and Parking Office calls for pricing changes that will make permit parking in some of the more popular campus lots slightly more expensive starting this summer.

As of July 1, the price of a monthly parking permit for lots north of the Midway will increase from $70 to $80, marking a rate increase that parking officials said is part of an effort to evenly level permit fees across campus. The permit rates for all other lots on campus will remain the same.

“What this essentially does is equalize rates north of the Midway to be the same throughout the campus parking inventory,” said Brian Shaw, director of Campus Transportation and Parking Services.

According to Shaw, the University sells around 2,500 parking permits between faculty, staff, students, and other campus workers.

The price increase was driven by strong student and faculty preference to park north of the Midway rather than south.

“Rates south of the Midway will not change at this time because we don’t want the increase of rates to have that large of an effect all at one time,” Shaw said. “There are some outside factors beyond our control, such as a tax element, which makes raising rates all at once a very onerous task. We have to time things correctly. Eventually, other permit rates will increase, but not at this time.”

With the number of permit-parking spaces in lots south of the Midway significantly outnumbering those to the north, the increase in permit fees would impact a small minority of the University’s permit-holders for the upcoming year.

Despite the increasing rate of parking permits, Shaw encouraged student and faculty drivers to explore other available, less costly alternatives.

“We have a wide range of options for people to take advantage of so they don’t need to bring their cars to campus on a regular basis. Additional transportation services are provided, and we want people to be aware of these options so that they can avoid paying for parking altogether,” Shaw said.

Some offered services include reduced-rate carpool parking, access to car-sharing programs such as I-Go and ZipCar, free local evening buses, and the Occasional Parker program, which allows free parking on campus 24 times a year.