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Friday, December 6, 2019

Campus

Garage Five permit holders can get money back after elevator delay


The new Garage Five elevators will not be ready when fall classes start. Parking & Transportation Services will give permit holders a partial refund due to the delay. | Trevor Nolley/The Cougar

The new Garage Five elevators will not be ready when fall classes start. Parking & Transportation Services will give permit holders a partial refund due to the delay. | Trevor Nolley/The Cougar

Parking & Transportation Services announced on Thursday that Garage Five’s elevators will not be ready for its opening in August, and students will be given a partial permit refund for the delay.

When Garage Five opens, students will have to take the stairs. PTS is contacting students and giving alternatives to staying in the garage.

PTS is giving students three options: stay in the garage and receive a discount, receive the discount and move to a different lot or garage in the meantime until the elevators are built, or forgo the discount and change their permit all together.

“We’re hoping some will stay,” said new Executive Director of Parking and Transportation Services Neil Hart. “There’s five floors in the garage, by the amount of people we have in there now you shouldn’t have to park past the third floor.

The options are different for residents, commuters and faculty, with residents getting the steepest discount. Faculty and staff will get $190 off, commuters will receive $140 back and residents will get back $205.

“Unfortunately zones B and C are full to the max,” Hart said. “We can’t add anymore to B and C, but zones A and D are still available along with the prorated rate.”

Hart said students who want to stay in a garage can switch to the East or Stadium garages while the elevators are being built.

PTS will send an email to students with a Garage Five permit, asking for their preference. Students will not automatically get money back or be allowed in different spaces on campus unless they reply back.

“We’ll continue to send targeted emails and hopefully get an answer from folks,” Hart said. “If we get to August and we haven’t heard from them they’ll have to start in that garage, then they’ll figure it out pretty quick, and we’ll work with them from that point.”

The garage has about 2,500 spaces, and around 1,000 people have permits for it. The elevators being nonoperational does not mean students can no longer sign up for the garage. Students who sign up for Garage Five permits will now just have a flag on their account alerting them of the issue and their options.

PTS identified the issue a few weeks ago and have been weighing their options since then, Hart said.

The garage began construction summer 2018 and was slated to be completed July 2019, according to PTS. The garage will have a build-your-own pizza place and a Dunkin Donuts which will open in January.

The mid-September opening date is not set in stone. The refund PTS is offering is prorated through October 31. This means that PTS hopes to have the elevators done by September, but there is still possibility of further delay.

“If you choose to stay in (Garage Five) you’re really thinking October 31,” Hart said. “If it comes September 13, everybody’s happy.”

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