Parking on campus

Parking policy and regulations

The operation of a motor vehicle on campus is a privilege extended to students. Regulations are necessary for the safety, security and accessibility of the campus community. Failure to follow parking regulations may result in parking fines, towing of vehicles, loss of campus parking privileges, or, in cases of serious difficulty or repeated violations, a student may be suspended from the university.

The acceptance of the privilege of parking a motor vehicle on campus shall constitute the acceptance of the responsibility to see that no vehicle owned or registered in the student's name is operated or parked in violation of the regulations. All vehicles parked on campus shall be parked at the risk of the owner. Bluffton University assumes no responsibility for the safety or security of personal motor vehicles or their contents while on campus, nor for the driving practices of individuals.

Motor vehicle registration 

All automobiles, trucks, motorbikes, motorcycles and motor scooters owned or operated by students of Bluffton University and brought to campus must display an official university motor vehicle parking permit. Vehicles must be registered with buildings and grounds within the first three days of the start of the school year, or within three days after bringing the vehicle to campus.

Vehicles may be registered at Log in and under the ‘Student’ or ‘Student Life’ tab, select ‘Vehicle Information’ from the list on the left, then:

  • If REGISTERING a vehicle for the first time, complete the Student Vehicle Registration form
  • If RENEWING a previously registered vehicle, go to the Student Vehicle Renewal form
  • If REPLACING a vehicle or making a change to your current vehicle information, email for further instructions                                                                                                                       

Students registering a vehicle will receive one nonrefundable parking permit for $25 per semester. A second nonrefundable permit can be purchased for a flat $10 fee. There is a limit of two parking permits per student. Permits must be placed in the lower left corner of the rear window. Failure to display permits in the proper location may result in parking fines. Only one vehicle is allowed per student on campus at one time. Students must park only in their designated lots at all times. Residential students may park in any lot designated for residential student parking and commuter students may park in any lot designated for commuter student parking. Parking in the incorrect lot will result in parking fines.

A change of vehicles any time during the year must be reported immediately to buildings and grounds at 419-358-3236 or by email to

A temporary parking pass can be obtained at buildings and grounds for short-term parking (up to 2 weeks). Temporary accessible permits are also available by contacting the disabilities coordinator at 419-358-3215 or by email to and must be accompanied by a doctor’s verification.

Visitors are required to display a guest permit while parked on campus overnight between the hours of 2 and 5 a.m. Guest permits for visitor vehicles are available at the information desk in Marbeck Center during open hours and through campus security from 8 p.m. to 7 a.m. by calling 419-303-3121. Visitors may park in any residential or employee/commuter lot except where designated as accessible or reserved, however note there is no overnight parking in the three lots closest to the Sommer Center. Students may not obtain visitor permits for their own vehicles.

Student parking map

printable parking map   

Parking lots on campus

A list of lots and vehicles permitted to park in each lot are listed below and signage is posted at each location.

Ropp Hall Lot Accessible, Employee, Residential student
Bren-Dell Hall Lot Hall director, Residential student, Special permit, Visitor
The Village of Bluffton has restricted parking on College Ave. between Lawn St. and Spring St. No overnight parking is allowed in this area.
Houshower House Lot Employee
Sauder Visual Arts Center Lot Accessible, Employee, Residential student, Visitor
Riley Court Lot Accessible, Employee, Visitor
Burcky Gym Lot Accessible, Employee, Visitor, No overnight parking
Sommer Center Lot Accessible, Commuter student, Employee, Visitor, No overnight parking
Elm Street Lot Commuter student, Employee, Visitor, No overnight parking
Ramseyer, Hirschy, and Neufeld Hall Lots Accessible, Hall director, Residential student
Bentley Road, Lot #1 Accessible, Commuter student, Employee, Special permit, Visitor
Bentley Road, Lot #2, #3 & #4 Accessible, Residential student, Visitor
College Hall Lot Accessible, Employee, Visitor, 30 minute parking
Berky Hall Lot Accessible, 15-minute parking
Musselman Library Lot Accessible, Library personnel
Buildings & Grounds Lot Buildings and Grounds personnel only
 Parking and operating violations
  • Driving on the grass, sidewalks or other areas not designated for vehicle traffic is prohibited.
  • Parking in restricted or no parking areas. Signs mark all such areas.
  • Failure to display a valid State of Ohio or Bluffton University accessible permit when parked in accessible spaces.
  • Parking in driveways, walks, loading areas, grassed areas, entrances to buildings or at cross walks.
  • Failure to properly display a permit within 24 hours of its receipt.
  • Failure to obey lot assignments and designated space rules as listed above.
  • Failure on campus to observe the traffic and parking regulations of the Village of Bluffton while on campus.
  • Exceeding the posted speed limit on campus.
  • Reckless operation of vehicles.
  • Parking along curbs painted yellow is not allowed, except to unload and load student belongings. Hazard flasher lights must be used when loading or unloading (no exceptions). Immediately upon unloading or loading, the vehicle must be moved. A 10-minute limit will be enforced. Vehicles not moved will receive tickets.
  • Improper parking in accessible zones, reserved parking spaces, roads marked “no parking” is not allowed.
  • The Bluffton Police Department monitors parking off campus. Violations and fines for violations are under the authority of the Village of Bluffton and the Bluffton Police Department. For courtesy and good will of the university’s neighbors, residential students should not park on streets near university property. The Village of Bluffton has enacted an ordinance restricting night-time parking unless the vehicle holds a homeowner’s parking permit on all the following areas adjacent to campus:
    • From and including Grove Street to and including Elm Street
    • From Bentley Road to and including Main Street
    • College Avenue between Spring Street and Jackson Street
  • Unregistered vehicles may have license plates investigated and fines issued to the vehicle owners.
Fines and loss of privilege outcomes

All parking violations will be added to the student’s account within two business days of the offense and can be paid at the cashier’s window located in the lower level of College Hall. 

Fines for parking violations are as follows:

  • Parking in incorrect lot: $25 per daily violation
  • Parking in fire lanes, no flashers or exceeding 10 minute limit: $25 per daily violation
  • Unregistered vehicle: $25 per daily violation
  • Failure to display permit: $5 per daily violation
  • Stolen, altered or unauthorized use of parking sticker: $25 per daily violation
  • Parking in accessible area: $50 per daily violation
  • No valid parking permit: $25 per daily violation
  • Taking two or more parking spaces: $10 per daily violation
  • Blocking drive/access: $10 per daily violation
  • Parking in non-designated parking area: $10 per daily violation
  • Parking in reserved space: $25 per daily violation
  • Reckless/hazardous operation of vehicle: $25 per violation
  • Any cost with identifying unregistered vehicles will be passed on to the student or owner
  • All other parking violations: $5 per daily violation 

Other possible outcomes for parking and operating violations include:

  • Students parking in a fire lane, accessible spot or other reserved parking space on campus without authorization may be ticketed by the Bluffton Police Department. Expect much higher fines than those listed above.
  • Repeated violations may result in a vehicle being towed at the owner’s expense. Towed vehicles can be retrieved from Ed’s 24-hour Towing, 146 Jefferson Street, Bluffton, 419-326-8154.
  • Any student in possession of a permit that has been stolen, altered or used without authorization will be automatically referred to the

    vice president of student affairs and athletics

    to begin the campus conduct process. 
Parking violation appeal procedure

Any person who feels they have been incorrectly cited for a parking violation can appeal their ticket by emailing with the subject heading Parking Ticket Appeal Request. Requests for citation appeals must be received within five business days of the citation issue date. A member of the parking enforcement staff will set up a time to meet with the student within two weeks of the written appeal request.

Absent extraordinary circumstances, an appeal submitted after five business days of the citation issue date will not be reviewed and fines must be paid as shown on the parking ticket.

The student should bring their parking ticket to the appeal appointment, along with any supporting documentation they wish to provide.

If the student is unable to attend their scheduled meeting, they may email the parking enforcement to reschedule. All requests to reschedule must be sent prior to the set meeting date and time. Only one reschedule request may be made per violation.

The fine for a parking violation is automatically added to the student’s account within two business days of the offense. If a student's parking ticket is waived following appeal, the parking fine will be removed from the student’s account.