As Ohio State University favors $483M bid to outsource parking U-M not considering privatizing service
Ohio State University is considering privatizing parking services in an attempt to generate revenue.
OSU recently received a $483 million lump-sum bid from a company to operate its parking facilities, including some 36,000 spaces, for 50 years.
OSU is the first large public university to accept bids on the privatization of its entire parking enterprise for a significant length of time.
University of Michigan Director of Transportation Stephen Dolen told AnnArbor.com that U-M has not seriously considered privatizing its parking services.
"People are just kind of interested in seeing what's going on with OSU," he said. "There's probably all kinds of things people are considering in this day and age of state appropriations."
OSU Provost Joseph A. Alutto says that outsourcing parking is a way to recoup revenue lost as Ohio reduces funding for its public universities. It's also part of an ongoing trend to outsource or streamline services in order to generate immediate cash. The school predicts that if fully endowed, the $483 million investment could increase to $4.9 billion at the end of 50 years.
Parking permit rate increases would be capped year-to-year. During the first 10 years, rates would not be permitted to increase by more than 5.5 percent yearly and during the final 40 years yearly rate increases would be capped at 4 percent or the industry standard.
According to a survey of more than 1,000 OSU professors, 92 percent of faculty members who took a position on the issue opposed privatization, an OSU Lantern article reported. One professor created a video questioning OSU's endowment prediction.