The costs of on-campus parking

Photo by Alexa Christie | Tioga Lot is one of the six parking lots available for on-campus parking.

Though there are 12 lots for students to park, fees are costing students more than they let on.

When it comes to UW Tacoma, parking is a challenge many students face. Whether it be free or paid, parking can sometimes indicate whether a student attends their lectures.

Currently on campus there are six parking lots as well as six community parking lots available to students. Of the six parking lots on campus, parking permits are required in order to avoid citations ranging from $95 to $235 quarterly. 

As reported by UWT’s Transportation Services, students who have parking permits from Whitney Lot WT32 on 19th and Fawcett pay a quarterly fee of $95. Students who attend UWT full-time are looking at an annual fee of $285, while attending UWT for four years they have most likely spent $1,140 alone on parking permits.

As the parking lots become closer to campus, the rates of parking permits rise. Pinkerton Lots  on 17th and Broadway, right across from Dougan, permits range from $81 for quarterly evening parking valid from 3:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. averaging to $243 per academic year. Students purchasing all-day parking permits valid from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. are looking at a quarterly fee of $235 – that is $705 per academic year, for students completing their full 4 years that is $2,820 spent on parking alone. 

While on-campus parking is more accessible, students have other options to avoid paying costly fees. The Tacoma Link offers students transportation from the Tacoma Dome station all the way to Theater District (currently Commerce Street) at no cost, while also making a direct stop at Union Station – in front of UWT. 

The Tacoma Dome station allows free parking to all but functions on a first-come first-serve basis, negatively impacting students on parking congestion. 

The Tacoma Link runs every 12 minutes starting at 6:30 a.m. and ending at 8:15 p.m. on weekdays, before and after the specified times above it runs every 24 minutes from 5:00 a.m. to 6:30 a.m and from 8:15 p.m to 10:15 p.m. 

“Though waiting for the Link during the winter wasn’t easy, it helped me save money for three years straight,” said former student Rocio Aurea, who attended UWT for 3 years. 

Aurea implores students to take the link and save money as she did, later stating waiting 12 minutes is worth it when it saves you from on-campus parking fees when you’re a college student struggling financially. 

For more information on on-campus transportation and parking services visit the link: https://www.tacoma.uw.edu/fa/facilities/transportation/parking-lots-garages For more information regarding the Tacoma Link and running schedules visit the link: soundtransit.org/t

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