UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN River Falls

Frequently Asked Questions - Pay By Space

What is a parking pay station?
Parking pay stations are automated parking meters that manage multiple parking spaces in pay by space parking lots.

Why use automated pay stations?
This technology offers many advantages to both the customer and University Parking including:

  • Multiple payment options – The units accept credit or debit cards, and U.S. cash and coins. 
  • Printed receipts – Pay and take your receipt with you. The time your parking expires is printed on your receipt.
  • Reduced maintenance – Pay stations need service twice a month compared with meters which require service up to twice each week.
  • Less down time – It is illegal to park at an inoperative/malfunctioning meter but if the pay station closest to you is inoperative, you can pay for your parking at ANY pay station and be on your way.
  • Rate flexibility – Multiple rates can be programmed into the units to allow for rate changes, i.e.. Conference rates, after hour rates, etc.
  • Transaction tracking – Lost receipt? Provide your space number and date and we can retrieve your transaction details from the database and print a duplicate receipt.
  • Remote programming – All rates can be programmed from a central computer instead of manually adjusting each individual meter.
  • Less sidewalk clutter – Just a few pay stations can manage all of the pay by space parking spaces on campus.
  • Not currently in use but available for expansion in the future to: Pay-by-cell option – To which subscribers to this service could pay for parking or add time to their parking using a cell phone. The service could even call to remind when your parking time is about to expire.

How will I find a pay station?
The pay stations are located under the shelters in the lots with a sign to indicate the location “Pay Here” sign (above each unit). Remember, you can pay for, or extend, your parking at any pay station.

How do I use the pay station?
Each unit has step-by-step instructions to guide you through your transaction. Just press any button to "wake" the unit from power save. Then enter your space number and follow the prompts on the screen. You'll see the panel light up when the unit is ready to accept payment. Insert your payment and collect your receipt from the slot below. Take your receipt with you to remind you exactly what time your parking expires. Display of your receipt in your car is not required.

How do I add time to my parking?
If your time has not expired, you can add additional time by entering your space number and selecting option 2, "Add Time" from the pay station menu. Press enter, then key in your add time code from your receipt. Follow the prompts and a new receipt will print showing your adjusted expiration time. If your original time has expired, start a new parking transaction.

What types of payment are accepted?
In addition to U.S. coin and cash the pay stations accept debit and credit cards. If paying with coin or cash, use exact change. In order to conserve processing energy, the pay stations do not give change. Overpayment will not be refunded.

Why was the pay by space chosen to replace meters?
The user will find the payment method to their convenience. The parking office will reduce costs associated with installation, maintenance, and efficient enforcement.

Can I get a refund?
No, the pay stations do not give change.  If paying with coin or cash, use exact change. Overpayment will not be refunded.

What hours do I have to pay?
All Pay By Space parking is enforced Monday thru Friday, 7:30AM-7:00PM, with the exclusion of legal holidays.

How do officers monitor the parking without a receipt on my vehicle?
When you enter your space number and pay to park, the data from your transaction is immediately transmitted to a database stored on the Internet. Enforcement officers download this file, either at the pay station or via their handhelds, to view a list of the spaces paid or expired in real time.

 If I pay for all day can I come and go?
The pay stations do not support in and out privileges. If you have paid for the day and leave your space, there is no guarantee that your space will be available when you return. Over payments will not be refunded.

Is my physically challenged permit valid in the pay by space parking?
Yes, holders of a UWRF issued or state physically challenged permit or state issued physically challenged plates can park in any of the pay by space parking without payment.

What do I do if the pay station is inoperative?
Current pay stations are rarely inoperative. If the unit you are using seems to be malfunctioning, any pay station in the area can accept your payment. Enter your stall number and follow the prompts. If you continue to have difficulties, contact University Parking @ 715-425-3333 and staff will be happy to assist you.

 What if I paid to park but am mistakenly cited?
The error we see most frequently is that drivers enter the wrong space number when they park. But your receipt provides proof of payment. Take your receipt and citation to University Parking immediately. If we can confirm the two match, the citation can be voided. If you cannot find your receipt, or your payment cannot be confirmed, and you wish to dispute the citation an appeal can be filed online (14 day deadline applies).

 What will happen to the meters?
26 meters have been relocated and installed in R lot, located south of Cold Storage (Maintenance). The excess meters will be sold to other parking agencies for use

Can I park my motorcycle, moped, or motor scooter in pay by space parking?
Yes, but it must be in the designated Motorcycle Pay by space parking spaces. You must either pay at the pay station or display the appropriate permit.

Are there plans to install pay stations in other areas?
Yes, since pay by space parking is a convenient way to ensure turn over in the course of a day to serve the needs of multiple customers. As the benefits of the system become more apparent, we expect other areas will have a to offer customers the same level of convenience. Future installations will be planned as the budget allows.

Who is paying for the construction of pay by space parking?
University Parking is 100% self-funded. No tax dollars.