Involvement Resources

Commuter Resources


Walking Guide

Walking around campus is a great way to get from class to class. Take a look at the UMN Walking Guide for estimated walk times and safety tips!

Gopher Way

During the winter months, stay warm by utilizing the Gopher Way. The Gopher Way is a system of tunnels and skyways that connect many of the buildings on campus. See here for a map of the Gopher Way System.

624-WALK program

Walking alone? The UMN offers trained security monitors, available 24/7, to walk (or bike) with you! Just call 612-624-WALK (4-9255 from any campus phone) or use the Safewalk request page. Visit the Public Safety webpage to see the walk boundaries.


Student Contract Parking

Student Contract Parking Link

Full-time student parking contracts are available each semester through an online lottery. Students may enter the lottery each semester, but entering does not guarantee a parking contract. Contracts are good for one semester only. You must re-enter the lottery for each semester. Locations vary but always include spaces on each campus.

Contract Features

  • Access to your assigned facility 24/7. (At most locations. Contract holders without 24/7 access in their assigned facility are provided with evening and weekend access at a nearby location.)
  • Unlimited entry and exit.
  • Easy convenient payment through the student accounts receivable (SAR) system.

Applying for a Contract

Go to the UMN Parking and Transportation site to fill out an application for contract parking. Here are some important dates to be aware of:

  • Spring Semester 2019: October 9-November 19 (midnight)
  • Summer 2019: no lottery; passes go on sale on Monday, May 5th

Didn’t Get a Contract?

Have no fear! During fall and spring semester, contract space is always available in the State Fairgrounds lot for commuter students (this can be conveniently purchased through the lottery or by coming into the PTS office). If you are a student living in an apartment complex across the street from campus or living in an apartment 30 miles away, you are a commuter student. Note: the State Fairgrounds lot is NOT available during the summer.

Daily Parking

If you do not want to get a contract, but still need to drive to school, there are many daily parking options available:

For more information, refer to the UMN Parking and Transportation site.


Want to save money and carpool! Check out Gopher Rideshare to find a carpool!


For real-time information on current traffic, refer to this traffic map from the MN DoT.

ParkMe App

ParkMe displays real time parking data, including rates, hours of operation, payment types, real time occupancy information, locations of lot and garage entrances and more.

Users can access ParkMe via GPS, car navigation systems, online widgets, and as well as through iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad and Android apps.

Parking in residential areas

If parking in residential areas and commuting a short ways to campus is interesting to you, remember the rules of parking on an unsigned street:

  • Too close to a stop sign or Traffic Signal - vehicles are not allowed to park within 30 feet of the approach side of a stop sign or traffic signal unless otherwise indicated by a parking meter or traffic sign.
  • Blocked driveway - vehicles are not allowed to park within 5 feet of a private road, driveway, or alley.
  • Blocked fire hydrant - vehicles are not allowed to stop, stand or park within 10 feet of a fire hydrant, except when necessary to avoid conflict with other traffic, or in compliance with the directions of a police officer or traffic control agent.
  • Railroad Crossing – vehicles are not allowed to park within 50 feet of the nearest rail of a railroad crossing.

On a sidewalk - vehicles are not allowed to stop on sidewalks, sidewalk crossings or boulevards.


  • Parking & Transportation Services (300 Transportation & Safety Building)
  • HourCar (car sharing/rental available on campus and in nhoods)
  • ZipCar (car sharing/rental available in neighborhoods, and near campus)
  • Car2go (note: U of M meters are not eligible for drop off and must be paid, they are marked in yellow on campus maps)



If you want to bring your bike to campus while also needing to take public transportation, you can! All modes of transportation through Metro Transit have ways to bring your bike along for the ride.

Remember to be safe while biking! Wear a helmet, use headlights, walk your bike on sidewalks, and use bike lanes on the road.

U of M Bike Center

If you bike straight to campus, there are many bike racks around campus, by almost every building. There is also a wonderful program at the U of M Bike Center. For a yearly $40 membership you can have 24/7 access to secure bike parking and showers/changing facilities. Check out the Parking and Transportation site for more information.

U of M ZAP Program

Students that participate in the ZAP Program can receive gift cards just for riding their bikes. Find more information here

Nice Ride

If you need to use a bike for only a short amount of time and you don’t want to bring one to campus, Nice Ride MN has multiple locations where you can rent a bike.

Public Transportation

Universal Transit Pass

The University has paired up with Metro Transit to offer students a huge discount on public transportation! When you pay your transportation and safety fee (part of your student services fees when you are registered for classes), part of your transportation fee covers the cost of your Universal Transit Pass. Once you activate your U card, you have access to unlimited rides on all regular route buses and the light rail, 24/7 during the semester.

  • Northstar #888 may have an supplemental fare on top of your Universal Transit Pass.

For more information, go to the Parking & Transportation Website

Metro Transit Trip Planner

To find the fastest trip from where you are commuting to campus, use the Metro Transit Trip Planner on the Metro Transit website.

Transit App

Download the Transit app to help you navigate your public transportation options around the Twin Cities.

Guaranteed Ride Home Program

Getting the Transit Pass also qualifies you for the Guaranteed Ride Home Program, which is a program that allows you to get a reimbursed ride home if you have an emergency or have to stay on campus late. For more information on how to sign up, visit the Metro Transit website.

Gopher Chauffeur

Gopher Chauffeur is a free ride system through Boynton Health that will give you a ride home if you live on or near campus or Uptown Minneapolis. Gopher Chauffeur operates on Sunday to Wednesdays from 8:30 pm to 12:30 am and on Thursdays to Saturdays from 10:00 pm to 2:30 am. To schedule a pick-up, download the ‘Transloc’ app on your iOS or Android device and select ‘Gopher Chauffeur'. Enter your location and destination and set up your account. Then book your ride.

While intended to provide students an alternative to driving under the influence, this has become a great safety option for any need a student may have for getting to and from nearby locations.

FYI, Gopher Chauffeur does not run over breaks.


Watch this video on how to use Metro Transit bus:

  • Fares for Metro Transit regular route busses can range from $2.00 to $2.50, depending if it is rush hour or not, but your Universal Transit Pass covers the cost.
  • Fares for Metro Transit express busses can range from $2.50 to $3.25, but your Universal Transit Pass covers the cost.
  • There are other bus services that are not Metro Transit that go directly to campus that you can use depending on where you are commuting from. These services include: Maple Grove Transit, Minnesota Valley Transit Authority, Plymouth Metrolink, and SouthWest Transit. They also accept the Universal Transit Pass.

For more information, visit the UMN Parking and Transportation website.

Light Rail

There are two different main light rail lines, the blue line and the green line.

  • The blue line goes from Target Field to Mall of America
  • The green line goes from Target Field to Union Depot

The light rail stops to campus are along the green line.

  • The stops for the University are called “West Bank,” “East Bank,” and “Stadium Village.”

Northstar Commuter Rail Line

The Northstar Train brings commuters from the northern suburbs to downtown. The train goes from Big Lake to Target Field, and stops along the way are Elk River, Ramsey, Anoka, Coon Rapids, and Fridley. Check route #888 on the Metro Transit website for schedules. This route will incur a small supplemental fare on top of the Universal Transit Pass.



Build Community

Join Gopher Hall! Gopher Hall is a virtual community that is exclusive to students living off-campus. By joining Gopher Hall, you will be able to connect with other off-campus students and have access to resources and program opportunities throughout the year. Want to join? Follow us on Instagram under UMNCommuterCentral and join Gopher Hall on
Facebook: UMN Gopher Hall

Get Involved

Although it can be tough to find time outside of school, work, and family, getting involved on-campus is a great way to meet new people and enhance your experience at the University of Minnesota.

We have an active, dynamic group on Discord and host virtual programs there as well! Come join us!

Meet Other Commuters

Check out the Commuter Connection and enjoy programs and services like a microwave, refrigerator, lounge space, networking opportunities, desktop computers, and more. It is open to all off-campus students!

Location: Memorial Union, Room 204
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 612-624-5491
Facebook: University of Minnesota Commuter Connection

Community Resources





Restorative Justice Community Action: enables you to defer a livability citation if you participate in a community circle process to repair the harm to the community. Citations include underage consumption, noisy party, disruptive behavior, detox, public urination, etc.

Sheridan Story: works with local community orgs to reduce food insecurity on weekends for children in local schools who qualify for the free/reduced lunch program. Volunteers from many area churches help fundraise and pack food bags that are distributed confidentially into backpacks on Friday’s at Marcy Open School and Pratt School locally (in addition to almost 100 schools across the Twin Cities metro).

Southeast Minneapolis

Southeast Seniors: helps seniors stay in their homes in the SE Mpls area and needs volunteers for yard care, help at home, rides and visits with local senior citizens.

Arvonne Fraser Library: your local public library at the corner of 4th St SE and 13th Ave SE offers great programming as well as study spaces and maker spaces for you or your small group to work on presentations, practice and more. Open Monday/Wednesdays/Fridays/Saturdays from 9am - 5pm and Tuesdays/Thursdays from 12pm-8pm. 

Minneapolis Police Department: Meet your Crime Prevention Specialist and get involved in the 2nd Precinct Advisory Council to learn more about crime trends near your home.

University District Alliance: The University District Partnership Alliance is made up of interested and committed people from the University of Minnesota Minneapolis campus area neighborhoods, business associations, University student government, the City of Minneapolis, and the University of Minnesota. It also includes a growing number of friends and partners who are committed to achieving the vision of the Alliance.

Neighborhood Associations

Marcy-Holmes Neighborhood Association: get involved in the oldest neighborhood in Mpls and help plan community events, respond to neighborhood concerns, provide input for n’hood planning like the redesign of the 5th St Pedestrian Bridge or the addition of bike lanes to 8th St SE, etc.

Southeast Como Improvement Association: this neighborhood has a huge focus on sustainability and environmental initiatives with some amazing community gardens and the FairShare Farm among other neighborhood projects.

Prospect Park Association: participate in a vibrant n’hood org that is working to improve the plans for growth around the 29th St Lightrail Station and the Tower Park area among other projects.

Cedar Riverside Community Council: this is the new neighborhood organization which is bringing together residents, businesses and students to work for the success of the Cedar Riverside area. Get involved in safety initiatives, covid-19 community response team volunteer opportunities and more.

Local Churches

Those we partner with currently:

  • Southeast Christian Church: a local church reaching out to students by providing study space, free wi-fi and coffee a few nights a week as well as opportunities to get involved and volunteer.
  • University Lutheran Church of Hope: a local church with an active justice and advocacy group that does quite a bit of programming geared toward student interests.
  • University Baptist Church: offers an amazing music ministry as well as justice and peace work. Check out the Roots Cellar Music Series.
  • St. Lawrence Catholic Church and Newman Center: take advantage of active programming for students weekly with opportunities for a retreat, spring break mission trip and more!
  • Seeds Covenant Church: active community which meet at Marcy Open School and help facilitate the Sheridan Story collaboration there at the school.

Other local churches:

Business Associations

Garbage & ReUse

Garbage & Recycling

Information about waste removal for specific properties can be found on your city's website. On the City of Minneapolis website you can learn how to prepare yard waste, learn about single-sort recycling, and find the different pickup schedules. For St. Paul and surrounding areas visit Eureka Recycling and Ramsey County for trash collection information.

Be sure to bring your cart back in same day. Don’t leave carts out and try to bag your items so they don’t blow around the neighborhood if your cart is knocked over.

Don’t use your recycling carts for trash. You can request additional trash containers if one is not sufficient for your unit.

Minneapolis Pick Up:

Garbage is picked up each week in Minneapolis.
Check your garbage pickup date for your address.

Recycling is picked up every other week in Minneapolis.
Check your recycling pickup date for your address.

St. Paul Pick Up:

Garbage and Recycling are picked up weekly in St. Paul. Haulers vary.

Pack & Go Program

Since it's inception, the Pack and Give Back program has diverted over 300k pounds of household items from landfills, and back to students and the neighborhood.

Help us by donating your reusable items when you are moving out each year. Help yourself by shopping the FREE STORE each fall and saving money on great supplies for your new apt or house.

The ReUse Program Warehouse is open for donation drop-offs from June 1st to August 24th, 9am-3pm Monday-Friday. Items collected on campus by the ReUse Program, or brought to the ReUse warehouse by students and neighborhood residents, will be part of the program's "Free Store". Based out of the ReUse warehouse (883 29th Avenue SE), all items in the Free Store will be offered free of charge to students from August 26th to September 7th.

Residents of neighborhoods Marcy-Holmes, Southeast Como, Cedar-Riverside, and Prospect Park may also shop the Free Store during the last week of the sale if they have made a donation.

DO NOT drop materials outside the ReUse warehouse overnight. This is considered illegal dumping and will be prosecuted. Materials for donation can only be accepted during normal business hours. Violators will be prosecuted.

Pack & Give Back is funded in part through a partnership with Hennepin County Environmental Services, in collaboration with City of Minneapolis Waste Management, the ReUse program, Off-Campus Living, Housing & Residential Life, and Community Relations at the University of Minnesota.

Shop the Free Store

  • Stop by the Pop Up Free Store at the Whole Music Club in Memorial Union on Tuesday, Aug. 30th from 11:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. during Welcome Week
  • Visit the ReUse program for the Free Aisle during Welcome Week and the first week of class.

Shop the ReUse Center (during the regular year outside of the Free Store)

Thursdays: 8:30am-5:00pm
Saturdays: 10am-4pm

General Public

To prevent reusable items from entering the landfill.

883 29th Ave SE
Minneapolis, MN 55414



Grocery Stores

Specialty Groceries

Grocery Delivery Options

  • Instacart (offers grocery delivery and pick up options) ($3.99 fee for orders more than $35)
  • Pikup (offers grocery and retail delivery options) ($1.45 fee typically)
  • Shipt (offers grocery and household essential options) ($10 fee per order or monthly membership of $10.99 available)

Farmers Markets

UMN Farmers Market

  • Gateway Plaza, outside of the Alumni Center.
  • Every Wednesday, from 11am to 2pm.

Minneapolis Lyndale Market

  • 312 East Lyndale Avenue N.
  • Daily and year round from 6am to 1pm, with limited winter hours.

Nicollet Mall Market

  • Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis.
  • Thursdays from 6am to 6pm.

Roseville Farmers Market

  • 2131 Fairview Ave N, Roseville, MN.
  • Tuesdays (May 5 - October 27) from 8am-12pm.

St. Thomas More Farmers Market

  • 1093 Summit Ave, St Paul, MN.
  • Fridays (May 15 - October 30) from 1:15-5pm.

7th Place Mall Farmers Market

  • 27 W 7th Pl, St Paul, MN.
  • Tuesdays (June 9 - October 6) and Thursdays (June 11 - October 8) from 10am-1:30pm.

St. Paul Downtown Farmers Market

  • 290 5th St E, St Paul, MN.
  • Saturdays (April 25-October 31) from 7am-1pm. Sundays (April 26 - October 25) from 8am-1pm. Saturdays (November 7-21) from 8am-1pm. Sundays (November 1-22) from 8am-1pm.

Convenience Stores

  • Target Express (at 14th Ave SE and 5th St SE)
  • 8th Street Market (at 7th Ave SE and 8th St SE)
  • Mr. Santana (601 University Ave SE)
  • Joe’s Market & Deli (at 19th Ave SE and Como Ave SE)
  • Bobby’s Corner Market (at 16th Ave SE and Como Ave SE)
  • Holiday Gas Station (at 27th Ave SE and University Ave SE)
  • Walgreens (corner of Walnut St SE and Washington Ave SE)
  • West Bank Grocery (417 Cedar Ave S)
Parks & Gardens


East and West Bank Campuses

St. Paul Campus

Community Gardens




Near SE Como

Near Prospect Park

North Loop (near downtown Minneapolis)

St. Paul

West side of St. Paul

Other Storage Options

  • - rent storage or parking spaces from neighbors through the site at prices that are often 50% cheaper than self storage units.
  • Guide to storage for college students (search engine for storage deals at