Parking Services urges online permit purchases for fall

Photo of hands typing on a computerNIU Campus Parking Services is encouraging all students, faculty and staff who need parking permits for the fall to shop online – and avoid standing in long lines.

Darren Mitchell, director of Campus Parking Services, said he and his colleagues are hoping to avoid a repeat of the scene inside and outside their office last August.

“We had lines out the door, going all around the building and down the block, and this went on for several days.” Mitchell said.

Thanks to new software purchased last March – AIMS (Automated Issuance Management System) – faculty and staff will be able to purchase permits online for the first time once AIMS goes live in June. The familiar permit renewal forms sent through campus mail are being discontinued to save money and trees.

Faculty and staff will have to purchase parking permits starting Wednesday, June 1, at the Campus Parking Services office until AIMS goes live online. Once Campus Parking confirms the exact date when AIMS will go live online, an email will be sent to all faculty and staff.

Faculty, staff and students will be able to login to their AIMS accounts and view all of the parking related information on those accounts. They also can purchase permits, pay tickets and update contact and vehicle information. Visitors who want to pay parking tickets will be able to look them up in AIMS using a license plate number or ticket number.

Online permit sales for students begin June 13.

“That’s the first Summer Freshman Orientation date,” Mitchell said. “Students will be here with their parents, and parking staff will be available to discuss parking regulations and how to purchase parking permits. If a student makes an online purchase before school starts the permit can be mailed to their home address, or they can choose to pick it up at the Campus Parking Services office.”

mailtruckMailing of permits will begin July 5, he said, adding that he expects most students will choose the online option. Payments are taken via credit card and, for the first time, students will be able to charge the permit price to their bursar’s account.

“This generation is all about technology. Today’s college students prefer the convenience of shopping online. They want quick access to information and payment options like this,” he said. “We’re trying to make the purchase process as efficient and convenient as possible, for all of our customers. They can log on to a computer, or use their mobile phone, and save time by not having to make a trip to Campus Parking Services.”

For those who need a less expensive parking option, Campus Parking will offer a free remote parking option. Free green permits will be available in June for Lot C-3, near the Convocation Center.

“This is a free permit for anyone who wants it – students, faculty, staff and visitors. The goal is to help alleviate some of the parking congestion in central campus. It’s also an additional economic option for students and staff,” Mitchell said. “Although Lot C-3 is on the western edge of campus, it is on six bus routes. The Huskie Bus picks you up right there.”

For more information, visit http://www.niu.edu/parking/, call (815) 753-1045, email parking@niu.edu.

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