October 28, 2013 University Celebrates Successes of Parking Lease, Looks to the Future
As part of our innovative strategy to generate funding to support the university’s core mission, Ohio State transitioned the management of our parking operations to CampusParc last September. The university received an up-front payment of $483 million which went directly into our endowment fund. That money already is making a huge impact on the way the university is doing business. The endowment earned more than $50 million, and $17.4 million was distributed to directly fund student scholarships, increase staff development grants by 10-fold, advance our plan to hire tenured and tenure-track faculty and to support the Campus Area Bus Service.
Over the 50 years of the lease, it has been estimated that the $483 million will provide $3.1 billion in investment earnings for those initiatives, as well as increase the long-term investment pool by $4.9 billion.
We recognize change can be challenging – especially on a campus of our size, and level of activity. The work between the university and CampusParc must continue to address our parking needs. Our parking operations are benefiting from having the expertise of a partner like CampusParc, who shares our goal of making our parking operations run as smoothly and efficiently as possible. You can read a more in-depth overview of the first year of the parking lease in onCampus, and CampusParc produced a Year in Review document with details of their operations, which will be inserted in an upcoming onCampus, but here are some highlights and a few key points about what is different and what is not.
What has changed: CampusParc is now our parking partner and manages the parking lease and operations of our parking system through the expertise of LAZ parking, which also uses the CampusParc name.
CampusParc is responsible for the operation of our parking system including parking access to campus, parking assistance, directions, customer service, parking facility maintenance – including major renovations, management of the permit system, motorist assistance, special events parking management and parking enforcement.
The university manages the oversight of the parking lease through its Transportation & Traffic Management office. The university also formed a Parking Advisory Committee. The PAC is chaired by the Office of the Senior Vice President of Administration and Planning and has representation from faculty, staff and students. This group serves in an advisory capacity to university administration to provide input to be shared with CampusParc related to parking operations, such as fee changes or space designation.
What has not changed: While CampusParc has brought new technology such as Pay on Foot Machines and License Plate Reader technology to campus that may have changed how faculty, staff, students and visitors use and access our parking system, the structure for this system and our permit classifications have not changed. While we did not always do so in the past, the university does require CampusParc to apply these rules uniformly so that we can hold them accountable for their operations.
There has also been no change to the number of available parking spaces on campus outside of closing garages or spaces for maintenance and renovations, as well as for Ohio State led construction projects. While maintenance and repairs are now planned and funded by CampusParc, they would have needed to occur regardless of who was operating our parking system. Parking that has been removed or changed in north campus, the Wexner Medical Center area or other specific locations on campus is related to Ohio State construction and plans for future growth.
Looking to the future: The university will continue to hold CampusParc accountable for operating a parking system that follows the policies and procedures established by the parking lease. We also expect continued improvement of operations by CampusParc related to efficiency, equipment and customer service.
The university will work with all partners – including CampusParc – to continue to set the strategic direction for our physical environment on campus, including parking.
We developed this direction and are implementing it by following the vision laid out in our One Ohio State Framework plan. The Framework envisions a pedestrian core to campus and suggests that “to achieve this we must park once in parking reservoirs around the campus edges; enable convenient, reliable transit and promote alternative transportation options.”
This likely means there will be little new parking developed proximate to central campus. The university is keenly aware that current construction, and changing parking needs are impacting parking availability – particularly in the south campus/Wexner Medical Center area, where the need to prioritize proximate patient and visitor parking is paramount. Efforts have been made to ease the availability of parking in the area for the short-term, but with continued growth and development, the long-term direction will continue to move toward remote parking for staff if spaces are needed for patients and visitors.
To further define and help us shape the long-term vision, the university is in the final stages of engaging a consultant team to develop a comprehensive transportation and parking plan for campus. One of the goals is to develop a plan to improve the experience in the south campus/Wexner Medical Center.
While CampusParc is a partner in these efforts and the university is pleased to have their expertise to assist, planning for the future growth of the university, including parking availability, is primarily the responsibility of the university, and the university will continue to work to address these needs.
One thing that is clear now and for the future is that while parking challenges would exist with or without the parking lease, without the successful leasing of our parking operations, we would not have invested $17.4 million into teaching, learning, research and transportation this past year, and we would lose billions of dollars of future funding and support for what matters most – our academic mission.
You may have seen this update in OSU Today, but I wanted to share that the university recently announced that it will use funds from the lease of our parking operations to increase the money available for Staff Career Development Grants. READ MORE.
This site provides the University community with information about the parking lease which allowed the university to receive an up-front payment of $483 million from QIC Global Infrastructure to invest in support of our core mission of teaching, learning and research. In September 2012, we transitioned the management of our parking operations to our partner in parking, CampusParc. CampusParc is the local entity QIC set up to manage the parking lease.
The university has formed a Parking Advisory Committee (PAC). Prior to moving forward with the parking lease, we assured you that the university would gather feedback about parking operations. One of the ways we will do this is through the PAC, which is different than the group the university gathered to provide insight while we were determining if we should move forward with the lease. All parking operations questions and needs should be directed to CampusParc, but the PAC can be contacted via email with ideas, comments and suggestions regarding the overall management of the parking system. More information about the PAC is available on this site as well.