Parking and Transportation Services sets students straight about Twitter rumors

| June 26, 2012

Construction staff are hard at work at the “South Village” parking lot (once known as the high rise parking lot)// Photo by Barry Falls Jr

The Twittersphere has been buzzing with complaints about the prices of UNC Charlotte parking permits this year, which now cost $415 for a full year beginning the fall semester.

This price has fueled a mild uproar from students, taking to social networking sites like Twitter to voice their opinions on the matter.

“[They had] better be valet parking my car,” tweeted several students. The hashtags #hellno and #greedy were often partnered with the tweets.

There is nothing particularly new about UNC Charlotte students complaining about parking services from the permit prices to the citation fees to the sometimes lengthy distance from housing.

But one rumor circulating on Twitter has prompted Parking and Transportation Services (PaTS) to set some students straight.

The circulating Tweet stated that UNC Charlotte makes $11,200,000 in one year from student parking passes, a gross fabrication.

According to a recent post from the PaTS website, the PaTS staff was a bit distressed that many students began retweeting this rumor without bothering to check if it were valid. The misunderstanding motivated PaTS to release the 2012 fiscal numbers to address the rumors:

  • Permit sales income (students, faculty and staff) = $6.5 million
  • Debt payments for decks already built = $3 million
  • Money paid toward building of the new South Village deck = $4 million

This information was provided by the Business Officer for UNC Charlotte Business Services, who was understandably befuddled by the rumors.

According to the post, almost all the money from parking permit sales and Visitor Parking charges goes into designing and constructing new decks, paying back construction bonds on existing decks and maintaining and up-keeping all lots and decks on campus, which includes replacing lights, repairing surfaces, repainting stripes and more.

The numbers above indicate that PaTS spent more money this fiscal year than they earned by approximately half a million dollars.

PaTS also took the opportunity to address another concern that students were having about parking citations. The money taken from citation fines are not used by the University. Instead, the money is forwarded to the State of North Carolina, which is then allocated to local public grade schools.

For students who are on Twitter and who may have any questions regarding parking, PaTS encourages students to Tweet them @unccparking.

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Category:Campus, News

Barry Falls Jr Barry Falls Jr is the former managing editor of Niner Times. His writing and photography has been featured in Niner Times, Yahoo! News, Radio Free Charlotte and Shutter 16 Magazine.

Author's Website

Comments (10)

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  1. LouAnn Lamb says:

    Thanks for an article that may help clear up a typical misperception. II hope students will follow the link you provided to the news post on our website that has further information.
    LouAnn Lamb
    Marketing Director for Business Services
    UNC Charlotte

  2. Todd says:

    If it does not already do so, PaTS should make that information readily available on its website. In the absence of information, rumors are common. UNCC students will soon pay more in parking than I paid to attend the university as a fulltime student (tuition only) in the late 80s and early 90s.

  3. tv22 says:

    They should charge daily. They could charge three times as much as the $2-$3 a day they are paying with the pass. Need to teach these kids math!

  4. Carianne says:

    While it’s nice to get the facts out, the cost of parking is pretty steep. It wouldn’t be such a hard pill to swallow if, between the cost and constant construction of more parking, parking spaces were plentiful. Instead, it can take an exorbitant about of time trying to find an empty space. Perhaps UNCC’s growth model needs to be re-evaluated so as to be able to provide adequate amenities for current students rather than continuing to admit so many people without enough space for them.

  5. Mary Newsom says:

    I’m a UNCC staff member. The cost of parking is high, but unlike the rest of America what’s different here is that you know you are paying. You pay (embedded in the prices) for the “free” parking at stores, malls, everywhere else. But it isn’t a visible cost.

    I just wish the angst we all feel about the cost of building parking decks would get expressed in pushing for better public transportation options, so that more people could opt out of paying for parking decks, so we wouldn’t have to build (and fund) so many.

    What about an hourly express shuttle to uptown, maybe stopping in NoDa, starting next year? It will be years before the light rail gets to campus.

  6. Ray says:

    Parking at UNCC has been a never-ending bad joke for years. The needs of current students seem to take a back seat to the idiocy out of the administration that insists on expanding student attendence to unmanageable numbers… no matter what toll it takes on professors and quality of education. But hey! We have a football team, right? That’s all that matters.

  7. Dale says:

    Apparently these people believe you have to take your car with you wherever you go. Proof that even young people are stuck or narrow-minded in their ways (already) or simply lazy.

    Bus. Bicycle. Walk. Carpool. Duh!

  8. John says:

    Two observations.

    #1 if you think parking is expensive at UNCC, just wait till you graduate and get a job in downtown Charlotte!

    #2 just because somebody sends you something that makes you angry, that’s no excuse for blindly spamming everyone you know without stopping to ask if it’s true! These are probably the same idiots that keep all the internet hoax emails bouncing around! The worst part is they also vote based upon rumor and innuendo!

    Either way, you students are paying good money to fill your heads, how about using them? If it sounds outrageous, check it out first, it’s probably wrong!

  9. Susie says:

    I pay less for a cancer policy than I do for parking.

    • dale says:

      @ Susie:

      I know you’ll get use out of your parking pass. I rather hope you never have to make use of your cancer policy.

      Remember, there are colleges that don’t allow or don’t have adequate parking. You also don’t have to choose to drive and park on campus.

      Life is filled with choices. This is just one of them. Perceived versus actual value? I’d go for the parking pass over cancer insurance.

Barry Falls Jr Barry Falls Jr is the former managing editor of Niner Times. His writing and photography has been featured in Niner Times, Yahoo! News, Radio Free Charlotte and Shutter 16 Magazine.

Author's Website