Frequently Asked Questions


Why is there a charge for parking?

Since we are a state-supported university, Metropolitan State University’s operations, including its parking services, are governed by state law and by the policies and procedures of the Minnesota State Board of Trustees. These guidelines require that all users of parking facilities and services at Minnesota State colleges and universities pay reasonable rates for using these services. These parking rates must cover the various direct and indirect costs associated with the parking services provided.

What parking services does Metropolitan State provide and how?

The university provides or arranges for employee and student parking services at our instructional sites:

  • Ramp and surface parking at the Saint Paul/Dayton’s Bluff campus;
  • Surface parking at LECJEC (Hennepin Technical College campus);
  • Surface parking at Midway and Energy Park Place;
  • Ramp parking at Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC); and
  • Campus parking facilities at other partner community colleges.

Paying the university’s contract parking fee entitles employees to park in university parking at all of these sites. The parking services provided at these sites generate significant costs for the university, whether for construction and operations (Dayton’s Bluff) or as a component of lease agreements (other sites). Only parking fees may be used to defray these costs; they cannot be covered by other funds in the operating budget. If the parking fee revenue does not cover the costs of parking, we will need to raise the parking fee for students and employee parking rates.

Is the parking fee mandatory for employees?

Paying for parking is not a condition of employment. Paying for parking is a condition for using state-provided parking facilities and services. Employees who do not pay for parking services need to choose among other solutions: parking on city streets, using transit services, car-pooling with someone who has paid for parking, etc. (Parking a motorcycle on campus requires payment of a parking fee.)

Does everyone pay the same amount?

Our parking fees were established in accordance with state law and Board policy. The Board requires that employees pay no less for parking than students pay (MN State Procedure 5.11.1, Part 4, subpart B, “Parking fees”). Therefore, full-time employee rates ($18 per pay period or $156 per semester) are based on the rates paid by full-time students. The per-credit rates paid by community faculty ($12) are the same as the student per-credit rate ($12).

Will any subsidies be provided for employee parking?

No. Employee parking will not be subsidized at any of our locations by the State of Minnesota, by other university employees or by the university’s students.

Is there a reduced rate for car-pools?

No. A car-pooling rate confers a benefit only in “opt-out” payment systems.

What does “contract parking” refer to?

Registered students, full-time employees and resident faculty (whether using payroll deduction or per-semester payments), and community faculty are considered to be purchasing parking services on a contract basis. Employees’ and students’ university ID cards gain them access to the Saint Paul/Dayton’s Bluff campus ramp and the MCTC campus ramp. In addition, “contract parking” status allows users to exit and re-enter our parking facilities as many times as needed each day the facilities are open.

Where can I obtain a Metropolitan State ID card?

Student and employee ID cards can be obtained at either of two locations on the Saint Paul/Dayton's Bluff campus: the 2nd floor service desk, Library and Information Services, or the Undergraduate Admissions Office, 1st floor, Founders Hall.

What does it cost to park as a full-time employee (resident faculty or staff)?

$18 per bi-weekly pay period (pre-tax deduction), or $156 per semester. Each employee initiates this payment by completing the appropriate parking registration form, available online and from Financial Management. (An appointment of 75%-time or more is considered full-time.)

What is the parking rate for a member of the community faculty?

Community faculty members pay $12 per credit for the number of credits they are teaching, if they wish to use university-provided parking facilities and services.

What is the per-day parking rate for visitors?

Visitors pay a $5 daily rate. This rate does not include exit and re-entry privileges on the same day.

If an employee does not register a car (e.g., if she uses transit or parks on city streets), will she be charged for parking?

The process for paying parking fees is initiated only when an employee completes the appropriate parking registration form (for employee payroll deduction, for employee per-semester use, or for community faculty).

If I visit the Saint Paul/Dayton’s Bluff campus or the MCTC campus only occasionally, can I pay the daily/visitor fee?

Yes. Employees who choose not to participate in contract parking can use the ramps at the Saint Paul/Dayton’s Bluff campus or at the MCTC campus by paying the appropriate daily/visitor rate ($5 at Dayton’s Bluff). Daily rates are not available for surface parking.

Can an employee buy a parking contract for part of a semester?


In the parking ramps at the Saint Paul/Dayton’s Bluff campus and at the MCTC campus, will I be charged an additional fee if I enter, pay and leave the ramp, and then enter again on the same day?

Contract parking users have unlimited exit and re-entry privileges at university parking facilities on all days those facilities are open, by using their university ID cards. Those paying the visitor rate on a per-day basis do not have re-entry privileges; they must pay the $5 fee each time they leave the Saint Paul/Dayton’s Bluff ramp or enter the MCTC ramp.

Where can I park in the Saint Paul/Dayton’s Bluff campus parking ramp?

Students and employees can park in any unrestricted and undesignated parking space in the ramp. A state-issued handicap permit is required for use of any space marked for handicap parking only. Parking is not allowed in fire lanes, sidewalks, crosswalks, striped areas or in any location blocking a building entrance or exit. Citations will be issued for parking violations. (More information about surface parking on this campus is available on the University website.)

If I select the payroll deduction option, is the parking fee taken out on a pre-tax basis?

Yes, employee-requested parking fee deductions are withdrawn on a pre-tax basis, without any additional enrollment process.

Will a community faculty member who teaches only online be charged a parking fee?

The process for paying parking fees is initiated only when an employee completes the parking registration form.

Will a university employee who also serves as a community faculty member be charged twice for parking?

No. A member of the community faculty who is already purchasing and using parking services through university employment will not be charged again for visiting campus to teach.

Will a full-time employee who is taking a class be charged twice for parking?


Students and community faculty members pay $12 per credit per semester for parking. What time period does each one-semester fee cover?

Parking access begins 14 days before the first day of class and continues after the end of the semester until parking access begins for the following semester. Therefore, an employee or student who registers for parking each semester can access university parking facilities every day that those facilities are open.

If a student cancels all his courses during the drop/add period, will parking fees be refunded along with tuition?

Yes, in accord with Board Procedure 5.12.4. The student will lose access to parking services after the refund is completed.

If I pull a ticket for daily/visitor parking in the Saint Paul/Dayton’s Bluff ramp and I lose my ticket, what will it cost me to exit?


I would like to invite several guests to the Saint Paul/Dayton’s Bluff campus, and I want the administration to waive their parking fees. How can I arrange this?

The parking ramp’s construction, operation and maintenance are financed by state revenue bonds. Those bonds are paid through user fees. If the cost of a party’s use of the ramp is waived outright, a greater share of the burden of defraying the bonds is shifted to our students. If such waivers are provided regularly, at some point the students’ fees will need to be raised in order to satisfy the bond payments. (And since employees cannot pay less for parking than students, employees’ fees would then also need to be raised.) However, if the parking need is connected to a departmental priority, a department could use some of its budget to pay for guests’ parking. (Parking rates are least likely to rise if all parking uses are paid for.)