The UO student guide to parking on campus
In October of 2015, Journalism Instructor Kathryn Kuttis started a hashtag with her three-hundred-student media professions class — #IPayForItButThey. The campaign originally started to create community among students but turned into an effort to fix problems with UO parking, especially parking availability.
“Parking happens to be something that we all struggle with to find a solution for,” said Kuttis. “No one wants to be late for something because they can’t find a parking space.”
Kuttis said that the UO Department of Parking and Transportation hasn’t been transparent in its communication efforts, particularly with warning community members when spaces are unavailable due to events.
“I think, in fact, that they are part of our community and trying to do what’s right,” Kuttis said. “But maybe that doesn’t come out if you’re not communicating.”
UO graduate Karly Tarsia was part of the initial hashtag effort from Kuttis and said she and her fellow students liked the idea.
“I had complained so many times to the parking office about how unfairly they treated us and how they viewed us as a bottom line,” she said. “I understand they have policies, but they need to be honest and flexible. I’m not paying to be yelled at for parking, and that’s what I felt like I was doing.”
Tarsia said that the UO needs to start addressing the parking issue and “not just give some lame messaging point.”
Field Operations Supervisor James McGladrey said that the department supports active transportation and encourages commuters to be mindful of their environmental footprint.
“As a residential campus, most students walk or bike, so the center of campus is pedestrian and bicycle-focused,” said McGladrey. “Most parking is on the perimeter of campus.”
He said he also understands, though, that these modes of transportation aren’t realistic for everyone.
The UO has around 3,950 total parking spaces, according McGladrey. The Department of Parking and Transportation issues 1,000 student daytime or commuter permits in an average year.
Still, finding parking is a challenge for some students.
“The whole campus is congested, but anything within a football field radius of the EMU is almost impossible to get through while driving,” junior Sierra Leeann said.
She said that maybe the UO Department of Parking and Transportation could create a more accessible parking area for students.
“Maybe if it was in a central location and students knew that they could park there, students wouldn’t spend ten to fifteen minutes driving around looking for a spot to park,” she said.
The lack of parking has caused some students like Jordan Pickrel to use city and residential parking.
“While I do appreciate that the scarcity of parking on campus encourages students and staff to bike or bus to campus,” Pickrel said, “I also think that it could be beneficial to consider options like parking garages to increase accessibility to parking.”
However, some students disagree.
“Providing more parking would go against the campus commute goal of reducing single occupancy use,” said UO graduate student Justin Peterson. “Most students can conveniently walk, bike or ride the bus.”
LiveMove president Stephanie Napa agrees. LiveMove is a student group that promotes active transportation.
“It’s weird that we’re paying all these taxes to create this space for a private person to park their private car for a period of time,” Napa said. “If people are going to be using that public space, they should be charged for that space since we’re all paying for the pavement and the maintenance and the costs that are associated with that parking space.”
Here are some common questions about parking on campus:
Q: Who is in charge of parking on campus?
The department manages the sale of parking permits, citation fees, and accessibility. The department’s homepage has a rolling column of events that may impede parking and traffic, including construction projects. For example, on Nov. 16 the Women’s Basketball game will reserve nine meters of parking on Villard Street. The department is also an administrative unit of the Finance and Administrative department.
Q: Where does the money that the Department of Parking and Transportation collect go?
State law mandates that no tax money or tuition funds be used to pay for parking, according to the department’s website. As such, revenue garnered from permit sales, meter and event parking and citation payments are used to fund the parking and transportation system. More than 60 percent of the department’s funding comes from permit sales, according to Field Operations Supervisor McGladrey. Self-supporting parking and transportation services are common at other universities and in municipalities as well. The revenue supports parking lot maintenance, active transportation initiatives and infrastructure and technologies, such as the UO’s new smart solar parking meters.
Citation payments also support departmental enforcement efforts; the department deposits any extra money into an account called the “Parking Reserve Fund,” which it uses for parking improvements and additions.
Q: How do I get a student parking pass?
Any student who wants a parking permit has to apply; this can be done either in person or online, and a pdf of a student permit application and a pdf of the faculty/staff permit application is available on the parking department’s website. Students can purchase a daytime or an overnight parking permit, both of which offer nine and twelve-month versions. However, the online permit application is only for nine and twelve-month student daytime or faculty/staff permits. It does not include requests for reserved spaces. Student overnight permits are available to students who are living in UO residential housing, and only Lots 52, 53, 54 and 59 allow overnight parking.
Q: Do graduate teaching fellows get faculty/staff or student permits?
It depends. The department restricts faculty/staff parking permits to employees who are working half-time or more in management and classified services. Graduate teaching fellows must first be certified by their department heads to get a faculty/staff permit.
Q: Where can I park on campus?
There are seventeen lots where students can park, and an online map that show where student, faculty and staff parking is can be found at map.uoregon.edu.
Q: How much does it cost to park?
$2.00 per hour. Meters accept Visa, MasterCard, quarters or payment through Parkmobile.
$2.00 per hour. U.S. Bills, Visa, and MasterCard accepted. Exact change required.
Monday – Friday – $2.00 per hour from 6:00am to 6:00pm. After 6:00pm $1.00 / hour. Daily Maximum $12.00.
Saturday – Sunday – $1.00 per hour from 6:00am to 8:00pm. Daily Maximum $8.00.
*There is no overnight parking in the garage.
*The garage may be reserved for attendee parking during various Athletic Events.
Q: What are the rules for parking at a meter?
All motor vehicles parked on UO campus that aren’t in metered spaces must have a valid UO parking permit on the rear view mirror, or they will risk a citation. Meters cost two dollars per hour and accept Visa, MasterCard, quarters or payment through the Parkmobile phone app.
Meters are concentrated on 18th Avenue, Agate Street, University Street and Lot 36A, according to the Department of Parking and Transportation website. “Pay-to-Park” spaces are also available in Lots 15, 17, 29A and on 15th Street, which has two payment locations. Drivers who stay over their paid time at a meter violate parking law and incur fines.
Q: If I have a parking pass, how come I still have to pay to use a meter?
The UO parking website says that even if students have valid parking permits, they are still required to pay when using a metered space. This is because metered areas are intended as short-term or visitor parking, according to McGladrey, and permits are not honored at meters. The only metered spaces where permits are valid are at the ‘yellow top’ meters at the south end of University Street. Those without permits can still park at the ‘yellow top’ meters and pay for metered parking.
Q: How do I pay my parking ticket?
Parking tickets can be paid at the Department of Parking and Transportation or online on the department website. They must be paid within 30 days of the citation date to avoid incurring late fees. The office of parking is at 1401 Walnut Street in Eugene. Tickets can be given for not having a UO permit on your rear-view mirror ($40), going over meter time ($20), or for parking obtrusively ($35).
Q: What sort of things will I get ticketed for?
Parking Fines (OAR 571-10-005 thru 571-10-065)
Blocking driveways, entrances, alleys; parking in service drives or restricted areas; improper parking or parking in yellow zones
Counterfeiting, altering, defacing, or for giving false information in an application or hearing, or for misuse of any permit
Transferring a parking permit to another vehicle for which the permit is not issued
Use of lost/stolen permit (marked in system as no longer valid)
Designated visitor lot or space
No UO permit
Permit issued, not displayed (warning on first violation)
Permit issued, not valid for area
Fire hydrant or in a posted fire lane
Illegally at a hooded meter
Lawn, sidewalks, campus landscaped areas or any area outside clearly delineated parking spaces where such parking causes actual or potential damage to natural or landscaped features. This is in addition to the cost of damage to property.
Multiple violations, after 5 or more unpaid incidents, additional fine
On university property, vehicle towed for other violation
Overtime parking: lot meters, street meters, posted 24-minute zones
Posted or reserved space
Parking in space designated for disabled parking
Taking the space of two or more vehicles
Vehicle has been booted for repeated parking violations
Unauthorized removal or damage to a vehicle immobilizing device
Impound Administrative Fee
Q: I think I received a parking ticket mistakenly. Can I appeal my ticket?
Yes — students can file appeals either at the physical office or online. Appealed citations are placed on “hold” during the review and decision process, says the Department of Parking and Transportation website. Once a decision is made, communication will be sent via email or letter. If the decision is to uphold or reduce the citation, you then have ten days to pay the outstanding amount. Again, failure to pay the citation will result in additional penalties.
Q: What happens if I don’t pay my fines?
Citation recipients get up to three notices if they have not paid their fees; after that, their unpaid fees will go to their university accounts. For recipients not associated with the University, the parking department will submit accounts to a 3rd party vendor for collection. If not paid within 30 days, the fine doubles.
Q: How do I get a temporary or visitor parking permit?
The department issues permits for periods of time from one day up to three weeks, and the cost is $10.00 per day or $15.00 for overnight.
Q: Are parking permits for carpools available?
Yes. To get a carpool permit, the UO requires that carpools be at least three individuals to ride together to campus in one car, that at least two carpool members be eligible for either a student or a faculty/staff permit and that each person in the carpool must own a vehicle. A mixed carpool including students, faculty and staff will be given a parking permit based on the majority demographic in the carpool. On another note, reserved parking for carpools is also available with a reserved space application and an additional fee.