UCCS’ Department of Parking and Transportation Services increased parking permit prices for commuter students by 3.05% and turned the 500 series lots into paid parking for visitors.
Associate Director for Parking and Transportation Matthew Beckwith said that the decisions were made to help pay for the parking garages as well as the maintenance and creation of parking lots, which he noted can cost approximately $1-2 million.
Increases to parking permit prices
Beckwith said that increasing commuter permit prices will help pay off the parking garages that are on bond payments, which he noted are over a decade away from being paid off.
“We’re a self-funded auxiliary. We pay for parking lots… We don’t receive any funding outside of what we generate through parking permits and hourly parking, and so we have to fund ourselves,” Beckwith said.
According to Beckwith, it seems unlikely that parking permits will decrease in price anytime soon. He noted that there may be small incremental price increases at some point, but Parking and Transportation has no plans to implement those increases at the moment.
“Our hope is to always cover our expenses with the lowest permit prices that we can, and that is always the goal,” Beckwith said.
Beckwith said that campus expansion typically comes with more expenses, which could mean an increase in pricing for permits.
“It’s difficult to know what other expenses will be coming up or what other new bond payments may be coming up. It’s very dependent on the master plan and what kind of plans are in place at that point,” Beckwith said.
500 series border lot changes
The 500 series border lots, which include the lots at the ENT center, will remain free for students and employees with a 5S permit. Visitors will have to pay an hourly rate of $1.25 that is capped at $6.25 for the day for all border lots, which is a 50% reduced rate from what border lot parking used to cost.
Beckwith explained that an audit had recommended making the changes to the 500 series lots to help cover costs.
“The audit was showing there was a lot of free parking being given away… So, it was really looking at equity as far as utilizing a parking space and paying towards the cost of parking, and really, the cost of building and maintaining parking lots,” Beckwith said.
Beckwith thinks that the financial outcomes from these adjustments will likely be revenue neutral, but he said that this is difficult to predict because of the discounted hourly rates to the border lots.
On top of reduced pricing in general, the hourly rates decrease after 4 p.m. Monday-Thursday to $0.75 and will remain free during the weekend and after 4 p.m. on Friday just like the other lots.
According to Beckwith, the decision to decrease the prices was made because the border lots have less access to campus resources, so it made sense to reduce the border lots’ hourly rates.
Students will always have access to the 500 lots for free because they pay the Safety and Transportation Fee every semester, but Beckwith noted that employees may have to pay hourly rates at the 500 lots in the future.
Students or employees who do not have a 5S permit and visitors who do not pay the hourly rates for the border lots will receive a citation for $10.
Students with questions or concerns can email Parking and Transportation Services at [email protected] or call 719-255-3528.
The 500 Lot is located on Stanton Rd. near the Ent Center of Performing Arts. This lot is free for all enrolled UCCS students. Photo by Megan Moen.