UNLV's fall semester officially begins Aug. 23, and many first- and second-year students will be arriving on campus for the first time. While a COVID-driven shift of some classes to remote instruction will mean slightly fewer people jockeying for parking spots, we checked in with UNLV's Parking & Transportation Services team for advice on navigating ongoing parking improvement projects and making the process as stress free as possible for both returning and new campus community members.
Here are seven tried and true tips to help students and visitors navigate increased traffic on campus this fall:
1. Don’t forget your parking permit.
First things first: All vehicles on campus are required to have a permit to park in either student or staff marked spaces. Don’t have a permit? Pay for hourly or daily metered parking through the PayByPhone app or online. Look for the PaybyPhone signage in most student parking lots or on qualifying meters. Learn more and sign up at paybyphone.com
Permit fees support the maintenance and management of more than 14,000 campus spaces and ensure that campus parking spaces are reserved for those attending classes, working, and conducting business at the university.
2. Know before you go.
Check out the interactive Google campus map with building and parking lot details to keep up with changes on campus and find out the best place to park.
The Thomas & Mack Center lots, the Tropicana garage, the Cottage Grove garage, and the University Gateway garage have the most available parking spots during peak periods. The best bet during busy times is to head straight to these areas. A larger motorcycle parking area is also available northeast of Lied Library.
Parking and Transportation Services posts the latest parking alerts at unlv.edu/parking. Visit the site to learn of lot closures or special events taking place on campus, so you can plan accordingly.
3. Be aware of parking additions under construction.
Two new surface lots will open on Maryland Parkway by the end of 2021, across the street from main campus.
The area across from the Student Union, with access to Del Mar Street, will add 100 new faculty, staff, and student parking spaces. A few yards north, the second area — outside the Graduate Arts Studios and Harmon Auxiliary (formerly Police Services) buildings — will be closed while construction crews combine them into one lot.
Additionally, the Red Lot — southeast of the Thomas & Mack Center — is now closed for the expansion of the Tropicana garage, adding approximately 758 new spaces and improving traffic flow. The existing Tropicana garage will remain open during the project.
4. Arrive early.
Plan to arrive well before class time, particularly during the first few weeks of school when campus parking lots will be most crowded. Get here early, grab a snack, and squeeze in a quick study session.
5. Be patient.
There are enough parking spaces to accommodate the needs of everyone on campus. Parking is most plentiful on the perimeter of campus, so wear comfortable shoes and carry an umbrella for sun protection. Patience and cooperation are appreciated as the campus begins the new semester.
Electronic message boards will be posted at major entry points to campus during the first week of school.
6. Carpool or ride the bus.
Carpooling frees up parking spaces and it’s good for the environment – but it can also save you money. The Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) encourages carpooling with its Club Ride program, or you can avoid the hassle of parking altogether by riding the bus. The RTC UNLV Transit Center directly links to the RTC’s main transit hub, the Bonneville Transit Center downtown, for connections across the valley. The RTC also offers discounted transit passes through its U-pass program for UNLV students, faculty, and staff for use on all RTC routes.
7. Charge it.
Charging stations for electric vehicles are available on campus through a partnership with NV Energy. Look for stations south of the Stan Fulton Building, at the Cottage Grove, University Gateway, and Tropicana parking garages, west of Greenspun Hall, northeast of the Student Union, east of the Campus Services Building, north of Bigelow Health Sciences, and on the Shadow Lane campus.
Looking for transportation alternatives? UNLV Parking & Transportation Services regularly creates and supports partnerships with local agencies to make it easy for those interested in getting to campus through carpooling, biking, and mass transit.
For more info, visit the UNLV parking website or call 702-895-1300.