ywca Minneapolis

YWCA Midtown Facility Notices

Upstairs Track Closed Tuesday, Sept. 25, 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm

YWCA Midtown's upstairs running/walking track will be closed Tuesday, September 25 from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Midtown Parking Gate FAQs

There will be parking changes coming to three of our YWCA Minneapolis locations (Downtown, Midtown and Uptown) in September 2018. Please see the Member Services Desk at any location for more information about the parking changes, or to obtain a Stored Value Card, Auto-Load Parking Card or complimentary parking card for scholarship members.

Q: Why do I have to pay extra for parking now?

A: Due to the growing population and number of businesses surrounding YWCA Midtown, a new pay parking gate system will be installed to help relieve the congestion and current misuse of our parking lot.

When YWCA Midtown was first opened 18 years ago, the light rail station and many of the businesses surrounding the building did not exist. The neighborhood has changed significantly over the years, which has heavily impacted traffic and parking use around YWCA Midtown. With upcoming additions of new developments, the density of the area is expected to grow rapidly. We are being responsive to the changes of the neighborhood, and are implementing this parking system to cut down on misuse of the parking lot and ensure parking is available for YWCA Midtown members.

Q: What are the changes that have happened in the area around YWCA Midtown?

  • The Hennepin County Building is now located across the street from us which draws a significant amount of new traffic to the area.
  • The Hiawatha light rail is the busiest transit station in Minneapolis with over 30,000 riders on an average weekday. The park-and-ride for the light rail at Lake Street and Hiawatha was closed in early 2015, displacing many commuters who park to ride the Blue Line.
  • There are two additional development phases going up on 22nd Ave. which will add an estimated 250+ housing units to our surrounding neighborhood
  • The New Adult Education Center will be finished on 21st Ave. soon after our gate is installed.

Q: What other options has YWCA Minneapolis attempted before choosing a pay parking system?

A: We have made several attempts to address parking issues at YWCA Midtown over the years, without adding extra costs to members, such as implementing a hanging parking tag system for members and having staff monitor the lot. Neither of these have remedied the situation, and have led to safety concerns for our staff when they have confronted unauthorized parkers. Implementing an automatic pay parking system will reduce the staff time spent monitoring the lot and is intended to prevent misuse before it happens.  

Q: How is the parking gate system going to work?

A: To make the new parking gate process as easy and convenient as possible, we are implementing these features for our members and program participants:

  • Members can opt to purchase a $15/month parking pass which will include parking for the entire month. With this Auto-Load Parking Card (monthly parking pass), members will have $15 + tax automatically debited each month, and will be allowed to park for any length of time and frequency during the month, as long as members are utilizing our facilities while they park.
  • There will be a 20-minute grace period for members and program participants entering the lot who are picking up or dropping off others.
  • Credit cards will be accepted at exit lanes at all three YWCA Minneapolis locations.
  • A cash/coin/credit “pay-on-foot” station will be available at all locations.
  • Members will have the option to purchase Stored Value Cards to use at all three locations. Stored Value Cards can be loaded with funds at “pay-on-foot” stations and will give users an additional 10 percent credit on the total value purchased.

Please note the following fees and time durations associated with parking in YWCA Minneapolis parking lots:

  • 0 - 20 minutes = $0
  • 20 minutes - 1.25 hours = $1
  • 1.25 - 2.5 hours = $2
  • 2.5 - 3 hours = $4
  • 3 - 4 hours = $7
  • 4 - 5 hours = $10
  • 5 - 6 hours = $13
  • 6+ hours = $20

To continue our mission to promote health and wellness for all, we will be issuing complimentary parking access cards for individuals and families who qualify for YWCA Minneapolis membership scholarships.

Q: Why can’t you just roll parking fees into the monthly membership fees?

A: We want to ensure that members who use public transit, bike or walk to YWCA Midtown do not pay extra fees for parking they do not utilize.

Q: Why can’t parking be free for members for the first 2 hours and just charge nonmembers?

A: As a nonprofit, we are charging members fees to help cover the cost of the installation and maintenance of the new parking system, which will make parking easier and more convenient for members. YWCA Minneapolis offers competitive monthly membership fees that are still lower than other full service fitness centers in the area, even with added parking fees.

Q: Why was there no opportunity for community input?

A: We value member feedback and have been gathering members’ experiences and comments informally over the past several years. Based on these comments and an internal review, the management team concluded this is the best solution for this operational decision. 

Q: I did the math and it looks like this is going to add $40/month or more to my monthly fees. Is there another option?

A: Members can opt to purchase a $15/month parking pass which will include parking for the entire month. With this Auto-Load Parking Card (monthly parking pass), members will have $15 + tax automatically debited each month, and will be allowed to park for any length of time and frequency during the month, as long as members are utilizing our facilities while they park.

Q: Will YWCA Midtown be installing more bike racks?

A: Yes, we are working with the City of Minneapolis to increase the number of bicycle parking racks.

Q: When do I have to start paying for parking?

A: The gate will be active in late September. An official date is still pending, but will be shared with members and program participants once available.

Q: Will the parking lot be open to the public?

A: No. The parking lot will remain a private lot, reserved for YWCA Midtown members and program participants.

Q: Will I still need a parking permit to park at YWCA Midtown?

A: No. The only people who will need a hanging parking tag will be participants of our Early Childhood Education program. Early Childhood Education parents will need tags in order to park in designated spots during specific days and times.

Q: When can I purchase an Auto-Load Parking Card (monthly parking pass)?

A: We will make these available for purchase prior to our activation date. We will notify members once available.

Q: Why do people who are on a scholarship receive free parking?

A: As part of the YWCA Minneapolis’ mission to promote health and wellness to all people regardless of economic levels, we have chosen to continue our initiative by providing free parking passes for those individuals who have qualified for our membership scholarship program.  

Q: I have economic limitations, why can’t I get free parking?

A: If you believe that you may qualify for our scholarship program, you may seek out information with a Membership Advisor.

Q: How will the “pay-on-foot” stations work?

A: The “pay-on-foot” stations will allow you to either pay for a daily visit or load a Stored Value Card that will give you a 10% discount on the total value loaded. The system will be located inside each YWCA building and staff will be available to assist you if needed. 

Q: Do I have to use a credit card to pay?

A: No, cash can be used at the “pay-on-foot” stations. Credit cards can be used at stations and exit gates.

Q: What happens to existing Stored Value Cards, like members have been using at YWCA Uptown?

A: Existing Stored Value Cards will not work with the new system. Once the new gate is installed, we can transfer funds from your current Stored Value Card to cards that work with the new system. We will notify members with more information when this service is available, as well as help advise members on all the new parking payment options.