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2013 Minnesota State Fair - Impact on University Traffic and Parking

The Minnesota State Fair begins Thursday, August 22 and runs through Monday, September 2. During this time, traffic will increase and parking may be tight. Consider alternate commuting options (carpool, bus, bike or walk).

If you need to drive to campus, please take a few moments to familiarize yourself with the suggested parking alternatives in your area. BE SURE TO CARRY YOUR U CARD. You will need it to receive the lower University rate offered Monday through Friday until 9 a.m. at public parking facilities on the St. Paul campus: Lots S101 and S104 (on weekends and Labor Day, all parkers must pay the event rate).

Parking and Transportation Services and the University of Minnesota Police Department thank you for your patience and cooperation during the 2013 Minnesota State Fair. Our goal is to allow faculty, students, staff and visitors open access to campus while still providing a safe environment for the University community.

If you have questions or concerns regarding parking, please contact Parking and Transportation Services.
Phone: 612-626-PARK

For the latest information on construction updates, please visit

If you have questions or concerns about University access traffic control for the State Fair, please e-mail Lt. David Wilske, University of Minnesota Police Department, at

If you have any problems or emergencies during the State Fair dates, please contact the Minnesota State Fair Chief of Police Art Blakey at 612-328-1106 or

Thank you,
Willliam Stahlmann, Interim Director
Parking and Transportation Services

St. Paul Campus

State Fair Gates
The Minnesota State Fair will operate the Commonwealth/Dan Patch gate for access to the Fairgrounds as in previous years. State Fair pedestrian access and a bicycle "corral" will also be available at the Commonwealth/Dan Patch Avenue gate. The State Fair requires bike lane restrictions along Como Avenue. Bikes are not allowed on the transitway between Como and Commonwealth Avenue during the State Fair.

For access and general information about the Minnesota State Fair, please visit

Contract Parking

Public Parking
Several parking alternatives have been arranged for faculty, staff and students.

Lot S101 (Commonwealth and Cleveland Avenues)
In effect weekdays, Thursday, Aug. 22-Friday, Aug. 30:
- $4.00 daily parking with a University ID before 9 a.m.
- $8.00 event parking for everyone after 9 a.m.
- Weekends/Labor Day rate is $8.00

- Contract space will remain available at all times

Lot S104 (Buford & Randall Avenues)
In effect weekdays, Thursday, Aug. 22 - Friday, Aug. 30:
- $6.00 daily parking with University ID before 9 a.m.
- $8.00 event parking for everyone after 9 a.m.
- Weekends and Labor Day rate is $8.00 all day
- CECC attendees will receive the University rate by identifying themselves as a course attendee to the parking attendant, Monday-Friday, before 9 a.m., except Labor Day.
NOTE: The only access into the fairgrounds is through the Commonwealth gate (#15)

Gortner Avenue Ramp (Gortner and Fitch Avenues)
In effect weekdays, weekends, & Labor Day, Thursday, Aug. 22-Monday, Sept. 2:
- $8.00 event parking all day
- Contract space will remain available
at all times

Lot SC153 (Commonwealth Avenue)
After 4:30 pm weekdays, August 22-September 2 and all day on weekends and Labor Day
- $8.00 event parking for the general public
- Contract space will remain available
at all times

Minneapolis Campus

Lot C66 Contract Parking
Hangtag reciprocal parking in Lot C66 at Como and 29th Avenues will NOT be available during the State Fair. Contract patrons will be re-located.

Going to the Fair? Public Parking - (see map) -- NOT ON THURS, AUG 29
Beginning Thursday, August 22 at 6 a.m. until 1 a.m. on Tuesday, September 2, Maroon Lot, Lot 37, Ski-U-Mah Lot, Minnesota Lot and part of Victory Lot will be reserved for State Fair patrons only. Evening and weekend state fair parking will also be available in the 4th Street Ramp, Gateway Lot, Gold Lot and Lot C58.

NEW THIS YEAR, on Thursday, August 29, the U of M Gophers will be playing in the TCF Bank Stadium. All University parking facilities will be in event mode for most of the day. This football game means that there will NOT be any free State Fair shuttle from East Bank to the St. Paul fairgrounds or parking for State Fair attendees on the East Bank campus on this day. Other metro Park and Ride locations will be available for fair-goers.

Going to the U? Public Parking

Here are some daytime parking alternatives for the U community (but not August 29 -- see paragraph above):

Victory Lot
$2.50 daily carpool parking before 9 a.m.
(State Fair uses the lot all day)

Oak Street Ramp (Ontario and Delaware Streets)
$6.00 off-peak parking before 7 a.m. or after 2 p.m.
$3.00 per hour between 7 a.m. and 2 p.m. ($12 maximum)

4th Street Ramp (4th Street and 18th Avenue)
$6.00 off-peak parking before 7 a.m.
$3.00 per hour between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. ($12 maximum)
Note: public space for State Fair use after 4 p.m., weekends, & Labor Day

East River Road Garage (385 East River Road)
$6.00 off-peak parking before 7 a.m. and after 5 p.m.
$3.00 per hour before 5 p.m. ($12 maximum)

Shuttle Buses

State Fair (see map)
From August 22 through September 2 (but NOT on Thursday, August 29), many 45-foot motorcoaches, provided by Lorenz and other companies, will shuttle riders from various parking locations on the East Bank to the State Fair. The buses will run continuously from 8 a.m. to midnight. Find complete information on State Fair buses online.

Campus Shuttles
The Campus Connector shuttle will continue to transport riders from East and West Bank to the St. Paul, leaving the Transitway at Energy Park Drive and following Cleveland Avenue to the St. Paul campus (see map of route and stops). The schedule is as follows:

Monday, August 26
7 a.m. - 9:30 p.m., every 15 minutes

Tuesday, August 27
7 a.m. - 9:30 p.m., every 15 minutes

Wednesday, August 28
7 a.m. - midnight, every 15 minutes

Thursday, August 29:
7 a.m. - 6 p.m., every 15 minutes

Friday, August 30:
7 - 8 a.m., every 15 minutes
8 a.m. - 6 p.m., every 5 minutes
6 - 10 p.m., every 15 minutes
10 p.m. - 2 a.m. Gopher After Dark service every 15 minutes

Saturday, August 31:
8 a.m. - 10 p.m., every 15 minutes
10 p.m. - midnight, every 20 minutes

Sunday, September 1:
9:30 a.m. - noon, every 20 minutes
noon - 6 p.m., every 15 minutes
6 p.m. - midnight, every 20 minutes

Labor Day Monday, September 2:
9:30 a.m. - midnight, every 20 minutes

East Bank Circulators will run Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. - 5 p.m. every 15 minutes. The last bus leaves Jones Hall at 5 p.m.

"MILK RUN" Information

The MN State Fair will hold the annual "Milk Run," sponsored by the Gopher Dairy Club, on Sunday, August 25, at 7:45 a.m. Short traffic delays may occur as the race winds through the St. Paul campus. If you have any questions, please check the State Fair Website.