Driving to school can be a hassle, especially during morning traffic. However, nothing can compare to the nightmare of trying to park on the University of Utah’s campus. With over 30,000 students attending the U, as of Fall 2017, it’s no wonder parking has become a problem. Parking passes are available for purchase from the university, but their prices are absurd, and even if one is purchased — that does not guarantee a parking spot. Students are constantly struggling to find parking with or without a pass, and as a result, grades are suffering and pockets are being unfairly picked.

Permit Prices:

Prices for passes range between $70 and $600 for students. Motorcycles have the advantage of lower priced passes at $70; however, cars range between $150 and $600. The parking lot you wish to park in determines your price range. For most students, that depends on where their classes are located. Most of the parking on the U’s campus is for “U” parking permits, which is $250 for a yearly pass. For starving college students already drowning in student debt, this is quite a lot to ask for on top of textbooks, room and board and the rising cost of tuition.

Mallory Todd, a graduate student at the University of Utah, says that “the parking situation is really a joke. Parking permits are absurdly priced, and the available lot is still a shuttle ride away from anywhere.” Not only are parking passes expensive, but the parking lots are incredibly far away from central campus. Even if one pays the price for a pass, it is still a hassle to get to class, no matter which lot you choose. As a result, many students are late to class and miss important information, no matter how early they leave. Parking is a guessing game. One never knows if a spot will be available and where.

Students are not the only ones to complain about parking prices. One of University of Utah’s full time professors, who wishes to remain anonymous, shares the shocking truth of his parking pass: “Just to give you some perspective, I pay $1,700 a year for a reserved spot. Yes, you read that correctly.” This price has also been confirmed by Parking Services at the University of Utah. A professor, hired by the University itself, has to pay that outrageous price each year just to park at his workplace. Forgive me for being bold, but I don’t see how that is fair, especially for an employee. No matter where this parking permit allows him to park, in a student lot, or a personal spot a few blocks away from work, $1,700 a year makes the U’s parking services seem a bit too greedy when it comes to prices.

Parking Locations:

Where does all this money for passes go, you might ask? According to a University of Utah Parking Service employee who wishes to remain anonymous, it goes to repainting lots, new signs, fixing pot holes and building new parking garages. However, she admitted that “most of our garages are on upper campus and don’t really help lower campus.” As many students are aware, lower campus is where the Union, Marriott Library and main general buildings are located. In a nut shell, it’s where most students reside during any period of the day. How is it that our expensive permit money, from both students and employees, is being used to build parking garages that are too far away for most of us to use, and likely don’t accommodate permits available to us?

There are those of us who absolutely will not, or cannot, pay the fee for a parking pass, and as a result have to find somewhere else to park farther away from campus. Since the university is next to Salt Lake City, the heart of the state of Utah, parking can be even more of a headache.

Many students have confessed to parking in “secret areas” on campus that are, in fact, illegal. However, in order to make it to class on time — and to save a ridiculous long walk to campus — they find it is worth the risk of a possible ticket. Kaitlyn, a senior at the university, shares that she has a “secret spot” on campus. People have warned her that she will be towed for parking there. However, it has not happened. As a result, she continues to park there. In addition, Rachel Horman, a sophomore at the U, says, “I use a secret parking spot that is technically illegal, but I’ve never gotten a ticket. It’s just annoying when others take my spot and I have to pray there’s an open space in the two hour parking.” Secret spots do exist on campus. However, students can’t get away from tickets for long, and, of course, not everyone can find one.

Parking is a stressful situation that needs to be focused on and resolved. The constant battle for a parking spot is not a fair game, but is instead a game of chance and timing. Unfortunately, it is a game that is commonly lost by students and the prize is more money for the school’s parking services that are not fully benefiting students. As students and employees of the University of Utah, we deserve better. Perhaps we should open a discussion, since the university is constantly growing, to come to a solution that is fair for everyone.





  1. It’s almost common knowledge among certain University employees that our usual yearly fee increase is due to a large portion of it being Commuter Services asking for more for their uses. Not the ENTIRE increase, but a sensible portion.

    It’s also almost insulting to student ran departments when their own modest few cents or fraction of a cent request for an increase for a budget is denied because of Commuter Service’s large request for fund sin this budget.

    One case? The year that they had to cover the debt from the parking structures because they didn’t anticipate that the students wouldn’t flock to the OUTRAGEOUSLY overpriced parking structure passes.

    It’s obvious that the university management as a whole HATE parking lots. They look terrible on recruitment pamphlets. So, in an effort to make our campus more marketable, they’ll slowly begin to choke the largest demographic of students on this campus, the commuter student, until they are forced to use the public transit system.

    With that being said however, the public transit is not entirely bad. But, SLC’s public transit system is still ill equipped to handle this campus’s student body. Especially giving the geography of the valley being that most students come from towns and residential areas still 20+ minutes away by car, via freeway.

    Commuter Services has been the single most unpleasant department to work with on this campus in the decade that I’ve been here as a student, and employee. Every single interaction with them is cold, and with little remorse for the largest demographic of students here on this campus, the commuter student.

    Eventually the prices will get so high that students will have to endure the 2-3+ hour commute each day by trax, frontrunner or bus. (and yet the university still wonders why students spend the smallest amount of time on this campus, we’re too busy TRAVELLING).

    But hey, at least the pamphlets will look nice.

    • I go to the University of Utah as a student, and I went in high school for a chemistry program. I would get a ride in the morning and take the bus home in the evening. Unfortunately, I stopped riding the bus home because a 40-50 year old was hitting on me (when I was 15!).
      I’m afraid I’ve sold my soul to the devil by attending the U. I’m not going back to the buses, Trax doesn’t go near my house, and driving was already terrible and is still getting worse. I will lose scholarships if I transfer, but it’s such a pain to find parking that I might have to transfer.

  2. I am a graduate student at the business school and even though our classes are at night time(usually from 6pm to 10pm) none of the parking lots are available for our use. We either have to use the paid “visitor” parking lot or have a permit to the parking garage. Most of us either park somewhere near the institute and walk or park elsewhere on campus and take a shuttle. It would be nice if the business school, as part of our $50K plus tuition, would allow us to use the parking lots. Safety concerns arise when 10:00pm hits and you have to walk to your car or wait for a shuttle to get your car. The safety of students should be priority.

  3. Students get a free UTA pass with their U card. If you don’t want to pay for overpriced and insufficient parking just take the bus or TRAX to campus.

    • I understand where you’re coming from but in my case TRAX and UTA is not enough for me. I live far away from campus and I have early morning classes to be able to fit time in my schedule for homework, studying, and my job. If I didn’t have a job or anything else to do when I am not in school then I wouldn’t mind taking TRAX or UTA but for some people it just does not work.

    • It’s not okay to take public transit when your on a tight schedule and have to worry about other priorities such as kids. I struggled everyday as an undergrad trying to get parking that I paid for using student loan money, it’s not right…

    • For students living a ways away from campus, such as Ogden or Orem, this can easily add two hours or more to their daily commute.

  4. Thank you Natalie! U of U parking is a joke! About 6 years ago a group of students rallied together to correct the parking issue and advocated for parking garages on lower campus… Here’s the catch the garage was built but instead of extending this are to U permit holders who helped advocate for it a new exclusive permit was created just for the garage… This is Bull!
    While many students who were involved have graduated and left the university those of us who have returned or are still here for graduate school can attest to the greedy dishonest bull that uofu parking is guilty of.

  5. Please get the word out on social media and let’s raise the issue and get rid of whoever is responsible for creating this absurd situation in campus.
    Too long have we let commuter services give excuses for why they can continue to steal from students…

  6. Yes, the pain of parking is real. But the idea is not to punish us, but to incentivize us to take an alternative way to campus. Bus, Trax, bike, walk..are all free. If the U builds more and more parking, we all pay for it, it takes up valuable space, and it encourages people to get in their polluting vehicles and drive. Over the long term, people should factor in the cost of driving/parking when they choose a place to live, which would create demand for compact, higher density, and more lively places near the U.

    • Cost is not the only factor. Time is a big issue too. It’s basic economics. Also, the UTA passes are not free. You’re paying for them in your mandatory fees. Look it up.

      • It is in our fees, but we are going to pay those fees whether we use the pass or not. So in a sense it is free, because we aren’t being charged to use it. If you’re going to pay for it, you might as well use it.

        • This way of thinking is ridiculous! There’s no requirement that it be part of the fees in the first place. If the school decided to charge you for a trip to Mexico every semeter and that cost was put in the fees whether you use it or not, YOUR STILL PAYING FOR IT WHEN IT DOESNT NEED TO BE PART OF YOUR FEES IN THE FIRST PLACE! This is why socialism sucks! Someone telling you how your money should be spent.

  7. Did you know that if your car has only a rear license plate and you have a valid permit and parked in a valid spot, commuter services will still give you a parking ticket if you back into the parking spot? This is because they are argue that if they have to get out of the vehicle to check your license plate then you deserve a ticket!

      • Golf cart? I think not. They moved to SUVs with license plate readers a couple years ago in their efforts to ‘go green’ by no longer issuing plastic passes. So, whereas they used to patrol the lots with carts and bikes, now they cruise through in an SUV reading plates. I’d really like to see the environmental impact study on that decision.

        I realize we are locked-in geography-wise and am glad that campus has started to build parking structures instead of just lots. As a staff member, I’d like to see more of those parking structures available for students, though. A close parking space is essential when I have to bring in 30 pounds of gear (usually twice a week); the other days I try to bus/bike/run/carpool because cars idling in our parking lots aren’t making our air any better either and it tends to be the students left idling because they have more turnover throughout the day.

    • Weird I know somebody who did that for the whole 2015-2016 school year in A-parking spots and didn’t get a single ticket without buying a permit (which cost over $500 a year).

  8. I agree 100%. I tried to get on a waiting list and am #396 or something like that, so I will NEVER get to purchase a better pass until well after I retire in about 5 years. So even though I’m older, and have to walk in the snow and lice, or heat of summer, I can’t even pay for a better spot because there aren’t any in the lot near me. The waiting list also states that one lot near the hospital has a 3-5 year waiting list. REALLY????

  9. I live in sugar house which is a 15 min drive to school if I get that luxury. Usually I have to take Trax which means I’m setting aside two hours to get to school and back again. I also can barely afford to live how I do and pay for school, so paying extra for a parking pass is pretty much out of the question. Usually I have classes at night and I can find parking sorta near campus for free. This semester I have day classes and if I drive I have to park far away from campus and walk 20-30 mins to get to class. Not to mention our campus and the surrounding area isn’t exactly a flat area. When I do get to class I am usually covered in sweat. I’d love to see cheaper and closer parking so I can devote more time to work and/or homework or at the very least not feel like I need a nap from physically exerting myself so much just to get to class.

  10. I completely agree. Parking is ridiculous and I think the university knows it! They are breaking our legs and kicking us while we are down.

  11. What a lazy report.

    Two anonymous sources, information that is available on the parking website anyone can access and it’s still incorrect ($630.00 2018 Central Garage A Permit – CC/Cash – Expires 06/30/2018). Rant and rave about how annoying parking is and speculation about how many people park on upper vs. lower campus without any sort of informed data behind it.

    Just griping about parking is okay, but put some effort into it. Schedule time with the director of Commuter Services, get actual information about how many spots there are on campus, how many permits are sold, how many people use the garages vs. open air lots, Why are there more garages on upper campus than lower, why can’t students park in them? There is so much missing from this at the very least you could have included the “G” in the title.

  12. not to mention that the U has been giving parking to the construction workers for the Alumni building – they park in all the U parking by the Lassonde building and student life building. That made it clear to me that the university doesn’t give a s*** about student parking.

  13. Every time I leave to get in my car, I am HOUNDED by hordes of people asking if I’m leaving and if they can have my spot. The U has always been a commuter school and they are very aware they don’t have enough parking for everyone. They think the solution is that everyone should use public transit and they’re trying to force this by driving up the parking prices! This is an absurdly rediculous expectation! I used TRAX every day for 4 years because I couldn’t afford the parking pass and it’s rediculous! Trains are constantly late, packed to the brim, and I spent 2.5 hours in transit each day. I live in Sandy for heaven’s sake. I finally had to stop using UTA because I had important things to get to and I need to be on time. To top things off, you’re not getting that UTA pass for free! The full cost is lumped into your mandatory fees each semester!! You’re paying for TRAX whether you use it or not! I’m surprised the $250 parking passes aren’t also a mandatory fee. Outrageous! Simply outrageous!!

  14. I totally agree that the parking situation on campus is wild, but I think that blaming tardiness of students on the parking situation is a little far-fetched. Everyone and their dog knows what the parking is like and could plan how long it will take to park, how long to walk, and when to leave their homes. There are bizarre once-in-a-blue-moon situations where the parking portion of the commute is thrown for a loop and takes longer than expected, but those events have nothing to do with things that have to do with the regular availability of parking. Ultimately, we still choose to park on and around campus, and should really take responsibility for our timeliness in arriving to class. The parking situation stinks, but using students arriving late for class as reason change it also stinks. It seems like the opinion expressed in this article was predetermined and then supporting argument for opinion was gathered afterward, much akin to something you’d see in a third graders essay arguing for vending machines in school or against having to wear uniforms. also wish you would have provided some ideas as to how problems could be fixed. It’s clear that place and price are issues, but what could be changed? Is this article just to get people fired up or is it a call for action?

  15. I find it funny that everyone is so fired up about parking. I live in Pleasant Grove, so I have quite the commute to get on campus, but with the FREE UTA passes that students receive I have had no issues getting to class. If you are that worried about parking, ride the frontrunner and trax. Downtown traffic during peak times is so backed up that I actually save time by using UTA, it also gives me a chance to do my reading and homework. That being said every university has parking issues, but with the free trax and frontrunner passes I don’t think the situation at the U is really that bad.

      • Maybe it’s not an option in those circumstances, but if everyone who COULD take TRAX would do that instead of driving it would significantly free up parking for people who have jobs or families or disabilities or any other circumstance that would require them to drive

  16. The campus has a fixed amount of land, and neighboring property is too expensive to realistically purchase for parking. With that in mind, the real issue seems to be the relationship between supply and demand for parking. The passes are expensive, but given that demand for those spaces appears to exceed the supply (based solely on my personal experience), doesn’t that indicate that the passes should cost more? If additional parking is added (as noted above, this isn’t realistic), the price of the passes should not be decreased. Like any commodity, parking is subject to supply and demand, and it seems evident that the author expects to get the best of both.

    I recently attended another school that was adjacent to corn fields. The neighboring land was cheap, unlike federal heights and the land on which the VA hospital sits is. Parking passes at that other school cost more than they do at the U–that was simply the price of having available spaces.

  17. It’s crazy. One of the biggest lots on campus is located right outside MEB. There are 100+ parking spots taken by construction equipment and vehicles everyday. You won’t be able to find a spot if you don’t park before 9:30AM.

    Let’s fix this!

  18. I park in the stadium parking lot, and I swear people will stalk you across the parking lot just so they can get your parking lot. It’s rather creepy if you ask me, lol.

  19. This article doesn’t actual show any evidence in regards to where the money goes and is managed. Nor concrete facts.
    Most student tuition includes Trax and bus fair. Laziness and poor planning seems to be the issue with commuters. The parking sucks yes!!! But complaining about how horrible it is and not giving solutions is actually just that a complaint.

    I have had to work around a tight schedule, using Trax, paying for parking, WALKING across campus, dealt with the Hospital parking issues and live on campus. I don’t enjoy dealing with all of it but guess what!!! I chose to attend the school. If you don’t like it find a new one. So many colleges have these issues and big cities do too. Stop complaining and start planning for your own success.

  20. What I personally find most annoying is on football game days when the University sells out day parking passes in the same lots that are already packed with normal permit.

  21. This is an absolute embarrassment to the university. The shuttle system is abysmal – shuttles break down all the time and are terrible compared to those on other campuses. Go to any major university – shuttles usually run every 5 minutes and more often during peak hours. Of course, the U encourages its students to take TRAX. However, let’s be honest – TRAX is not a viable solution for everyone and only runs every 15 minutes. After a summer of commuting, I realized that I could not stand the late trains anymore and decided to live much closer to main campus. I now have an electric bike and it has been one of the best decisions that I’ve made since coming here. With an electric bike, you can park anywhere for free and get anywhere on campus within five minutes (even uphill). This way, it’s possible to park your car in Research Park (hint: free parking) and bike anywhere from there. But of course, once the university finds out about such loopholes, they’ll probably start charging us for bike permits. Obviously, the U couldn’t care less about its students (hence why most of the parking garages are on the medical campus). Students are not the priority here.

  22. Great topic. Not only have I spent money on a parking pass that is insanely overpriced for the frequency I’m actually able to use it, but if you watch the lots, you’ll see that U permit parking is reduced in certain areas to make room for A permit parking (typically already in abundance). The annex lot and the gym lot both did this.
    My latest nightmare was receiving a ticket in a pay parking lot where I (you guessed it) PAID to be. When I went through their ridiculous appeals process, I was told they’d let it slide as a warning–all because they believed I typed an “o” instead of a “0” when submitting my license plate. I’ve lived all over the world, all over the country–license plates differ–and if this were something to nitpick on campus, signs should be posted as a reminder, or better yet, create a system that checks for both simultaneously. Such a joke.

    The University needs to build parking structures capable of housing large volumes of vehicles. Such structures, if built properly, could assist in security and safety issues across campus. It’s a multi-faceted win.

    • Yes! I’ve been going to school here for a couple of years now and the prices of the passes just keep rising while it seems like parking for the E and U passes just keep disappearing. It would be one thing if the shuttles were reliable but sometimes they’re over half an hour apart. I have other obligations besides school too and don’t always have the two hours it takes to take the bus to and from school (not to mention that the UTA bus doesn’t go to where my class and because the shuttles aren’t reliable I have to hike all the way up campus to my class). I’m dreading this winter, because I know it’s just going to get worse and take longer than ever.

      Great article Natalie – thank you!

  23. I’m also pretty sure they’re double charging for summer parking (that you can only avoid if you buy annual every time). For example, the annual U pass from last year includes the 2017 summer semester. The 2017-2018 includes next summer. However, this fall semester includes the 2017 summer (laughable considering it’s “fall semester only” according to the website). Are we to assume the spring and next fall semester wall also have overlapping periods for the summer? Also, the prices increased this year to account for work on a garage where no student will ever park [insert eye-roll]. Greedy-a** school is what it is.

  24. Last year two parking garages were built on main campus, one by the physics building and one near the business building. I know those structures cost a lot of money to build and they aren’t the most attractive buildings, but I am very disappointed that both are only two levels of parking. They barely increased the parking capacity for the space. If a parking garage is going to be built in place of an existing parking lot, the garage should be at least 3 or 4 levels talk to maximize space.

  25. I constantly struggle to find parking in the hper/softball/track lot area. A few weeks ago I sent commuter services an email informing them that it is quite obvious that more than just the six managers (the number I was told) for construction workers are parking in those U spots. It is also frustrating to see a large number of the spots near the track being used as storage for many different trailers. When I recommended these were two easy fixes for commuter services, their only solution was that I pay more to park in the central parking lot and guaranteed me that they check the lots frequently and there are always empty spots (complete lie if you try to park past 9 am). I find it absurd that my money is being used for storing campus equipment and if they need a place to keep trailers that is their problem, not my wallets’. Very easy solutions, however we need more people in power to begin resolving this issue that has gotten extreme over the past 5 years since I first began attending the U.

  26. I agree parking is a nightmare. I already pay for a U permit, a trax pass and whenever I have a class in the middle of the day and am forced to leave my highly coveted and contested U spot – it is literally impossible to find another U parking spot when I return. I am forced to park somewhere I am not allowed to park and pray I don’t get a ticket. Occasionally I do and that’s another $20, $40, $60 even $80 I spend each month on top of my monthly permit and trax pass fees. When nearly a fourth of my paycheck is going to paying for parking you know something is seriously wrong here. Going to school is expensive enough, I spend thousands of dollars in tuition, fees and books – after paying all that I’m further penalized while attempting to simply attend my classes.

  27. I have a valid handicap placard and handicapped plates and parking is atrocious! First I must fight with people who could care less about it being reserved for people with true handicaps; I have on numerous occasions watched as students using a parent’s permit park there, Football players yes they are easily identified due to the backpacks with their number and when I approached them was told to F*** off. I have addressed this issue with enforcement officers who refuse to do anything about this or tell me they have no power to address it. Commuter services absolutely does nothing about it as well, just stating they will look into it. I was given a ticket with a valid Utah State handicap placard and received a parking ticket for not having a permit. To fight the ticket I was told to pay the ticket and then fight it. Interesting concept guilty until proven innocent!

  28. I’m having fun laughing at all the sob stories in the comments. I’ve lived in SLC for 6 years now and I’ve never had any problems getting around using UTA and my trusty 1980 Univega. Yeah, trains and busses are occasionally late but that’s why you plan to give yourself extra time if things don’t go exactly according to schedule. Riding my bike from the train station to class is actually comparable to the time it would take me to drive and find a parking spot, and I even have extra time to work on my homework while riding public transit! The entitlement and victim-playing of you people is astounding. The University of Utah isn’t responsible for your failure to effectively schedule yourself. Live in Pleasant Grove? Maybe you should move closer. Have to rush between work and school? Get a different job or choose different classes. Come on now, college students are supposed to be intelligent and mature; stop whining and take some responsibility. You’re not entitled to drive your comfy little car to school. The only people who should be are the physically disabled. By driving your car everywhere you are actually making the rest of our lives worse by contributing to climate change and forcing me to breathe in your disgusting emissions during the inversions when I’m pumping uphill between classes, and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve nearly been struck by preoccupied and reckless death cages on campus. Grow up and take the damn bus, you’re paying for it whether you do or not.

  29. What I find ridiculous is that places like the Warnock/MEB lot are half-used by construction crews who block off large portions of the lot, only to leave them empty.

    I live relatively near 9th and 9th, so Trax + bike is the main mode of transport for me, but oftentimes the trains run late (somehow, almost certainly on a test days). And even then, for those of us in the engineering areas, the nearest Trax station is still a long walk or bike ride away. This isn’t even mentioning the lack of weatherproof bike racks on campus. Leaving my bike out in the rain and snow is a great way to ensure I spend a lot of money keeping it maintained.

    The parking situation on campus is a slap in the face of those of us who study and work at the institution, and it’s high time students start talking about it.

  30. There is not enough space to put new parking on campus. Parking Garages are expensive. Parking isn’t free and costs money, based on infrastructure costs (initial install and upkeep) also basic supply and demand costs. What the U needs to do is to come up with a transportation plan. They need to figure out how to get its students and staff to and from campus. People are driving to campus when it is unnecessary. Students will drive down from the dorms. If you live a couple blocks away from campus, walk or bike. If you live within walking distance from a transit station take transit. Also, don’t live so far away unless you actually have to. Being a commuter campus this will always be an issue.

  31. Not only is parking is ridiculous on regular days but my complaint is on”game day” when all the parking lots are closed for non-students who will be attending a football game later in the afternoon, yet I’m not allowed to park from 8am-12pm WHEN I HAVE CLASS because someone will need my spot at 5 pm for event parking! I pay a fortune to park and you will be charging a non-student/non-faculty individual to park there later in the afternoon. What we call this in the social work industry is “double-dipping” because you are making money of the students who buy a permit to park in a spot they are not allowed too so you can make additional money on cars just parking for event parking. SCAM!

  32. I agree. There’s no way University Administration is not aware of this issue, and it’s time for them to do something about it. The fact that students arriving after about 9:30 am won’t find parking within a ten minute walk of the engineering buildings is ridiculous.

  33. I am a student and an employee of the hospital. I don’t make a lot of money, but the University still expects me to pay to park at the hospital where I work! I live in an area where Trax and buses are not accessible. I feel that full time employees of the University should get discounted parking permits at the very least. The fact that I have to pay to park at my job is ridiculous!

    When I park on campus, I have to anticipate getting there about an hour and a half before my class starts just to make sure that I can find a parking spot. Even then, I am sometimes forced to park in one of the pay lots which is an additional fee on top of the very expensive pass that I am being forced to pay for. Yes, it is great that UTA access is included in the fees, but I think you should be able to opt out of it if you aren’t able to use it.

    I am also appalled at the rate at which the university chooses to build new parking structures that do not accommodate the majority of students’ parking permits. I would like to know how they are able to logically justify this, because it makes no sense to me.

  34. Here is a solution: Build a very large parking terrace or two in the stadium parking lot. This would still benefit sports on campus as well as students commuting to campus! Lower cost to park there or make it free!

  35. I feel everyone’s pain. Actually, no I don’t. I ride UTA to get to and from the U and I would love only having two hours a day on UTA. It takes me two hours, on average just to get from Magna to the University. And this is using the Max bus and the TRAX. Since I don’t have a car, this precludes me from being able to go to evening functions as it would cause me to get home very late, and since I have morning classes, this would preclude me having a meal or any decent sleep.

    However, on the upside, I get lots of reading time on UTA. I don’t have to worry about dodging traffic, fighting for traffic space, etc. I use the University shuttles to get around campus and even when I have to go to the VA Hospital (thanks, U. We vets appreciate that service!).

    At the beginning of the year an opinion piece appeared in the Chrony that recommended that the U shuttle plan be discontinued. This would have been a good time to advocate using the shuttle program more to free up parking spaces.

    Finally, get used to it. I first went to the U back in 1990 and the parking problem was horrendous even before that. And that was with three dormitories on campus where there is now . . . you guessed it, parking lots.

    The University has a location problem. Where it is located it has little or no room to expand unless it destroys more buildings or starts buying up surrounding properties which would also increase the costs of attending. It’s bordered by housing on some sides, cemetery on another, and hospitals on others. The relatively recent acquisition of the property that was a large chunk of Ft. Douglas has helped, but without creeping up the mountain, there isn’t much it can do. Multi-tiered parking structures are difficult to built, secure, and maintain in an area where there isn’t far to dig down and it earthquake prone.

    The overall solution is simple. Stop being so reliant on your automobiles. They are very convenient and useful. I hate doing any major grocery shopping on the bus. And it doesn’t always go where and when I want it to. Car pooling. Not incredibly convenient, but then you can share the costs of driving (gas, parking, etc.). And, of course, utilize public transportation.

    Finally, you have just received the U Complaining about Parking Achievement. Given out to almost every student sine the founding of the college.

  36. Ummm and what do you suggest is the solution? Decrease the number of students at the U? Tear down local houses to create more parking?

    The prices should apparently be higher if there’s no parking. If you’re a college student, you should be aware of the idea of “supply and demand.”

  37. I have a parking pass to the central garage, and I got a new car. I put my license plate information on my pass, but I forgot to activate it. I got a ticket and sent an email trying to have the ticket appealed, but they have refused the appeal because they said that it was after the ticket was issued, even though I paid $630 for the permit. On the website, it used to say that there was a grace period to avoid a ticket, but with the change in CIS, that is no longer on the website and they refuse to honor that previous agreement. What a rip-off!

  38. Glad to see this posted but surprised no body thought to survey the comptroller reports that are publicly posted to the University website to verify the exact amount of cash inflow from parking fees and its increase over the years. The amounts of money the University is making on parking fees are absurd and increasing. Football parking is also a big part of this. Another interesting angle is in the creative ways that students have found to park on campus for example I have heard from a number of student who park at the LDS building and take seminary classes so that they can legally park there, it’s a good way to catch up on some homework while ignoring the Jesus talk and getting a free parking pass. Begs the question why are valuable parking resources being given away for free to LDS establishments while professors are paying $1,700 a year for a parking spot? Another consideration is the fact that not only is this a commuter campus but some of these commuters (like myself) actually have full-time jobs to get to right after class and not having parking is extremely problematic because we are not just going home to study.

  39. This is a big problem on upper campus also. All of the construction has reduced the number of spaces and the garage that was built (which also took away MORE parking spaces) isn’t even available for U students unless they live in the medical towers (I’ve driven around in there and there are SO MANY empty stalls). The garage needs to be opened to U permit holders and at a reasonable price ($600.00 for a garage permit– no joke). I am very interested to know if there is a meeting in place to meet with commuter services or if something can be done. I’m very frustrated and irritated.

  40. Wow, I was considering enrolling at U of U and was checking up on parking there. Holy crap you people are whiners…do you have any frame of reference? 250 for a YEARLY parking permit IS OUTRAGEOUSLY LOW!!! Most places charge that per semester…get a grip, I thought Mormons were better peeps than that???

  41. These comments are all very interesting. We pay significantly less than most other campuses around the country. Stanford students pay $408 and staff pay $1,164 annually. UCLA won’t sell a permit to every single student, they make you fill out an application to see if you’re eligible and even if you are the cheapest student permit is $126 per quarter (which comes to $504 for a year). At ASU you’re looking at at least $210 per semester, and that only allows you into ONE lot. At USC even motorcycles are paying $72 per semester. Once you get out into the “real world” parking is only going to go up from there depending on where you live and work. Parking garages in downtown SLC can have monthly rates of well over $100 a month, and we’re far from being the most expensive city. As far as them just being greedy, what is it you guys think they’re doing with all this money? No one in Commuter Services can get a bonus, and they can’t get raises that aren’t state sanctioned by the Board of Regents. Auxilliary Services (which covers Commuter Services) is financially independent from the University, which means they sustain themselves and their finances don’t mix. You guys want good parking lots and good shuttles? You have to pay for it, and it doesn’t come out of your tuition like the UTA passes do. The only people who pay for the parking lots and all the infrastructure that supports them are the people who drive to campus and actually utilize them. You want them to keep everyone on a level playing field and keep out cars that don’t belong on campus and take up space YOU could be using for your car? That requires enforcement, which you have to pay for. You want cars to stay off the sidewalks? More lights in the garages? You want garages in general? (Which, by the way, use an insane amount of expensive steel and concrete and can require a lot of excavation, which can make them more expensive to build than some of the classroom buildings on campus). You have to pay for it. You’re not entitled to anything. Nothing in life is free, even if it looks like it on the surface. If you’re lucky enough to have a job in the future that provides “free” parking, it’s not free. You might not be paying for it directly, but either you or someone else is paying for it indirectly through lower wages, higher rent, higher prices on goods, ets. It takes money to make the modern world work. And at the University of Utah, parking takes less of your money than it does most other places you could be going to college.


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