U-Pass changes may cause long lines

UIC-Halsted Blue Line station signThe switch to the new CTA Ventra U-Pass could mean long lines for students picking up the passes this semester, especially on Aug. 21, the first day of distribution, and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Aug. 26, the first day of class, the ID Center said.

The passes are distributed at the ID Center in the Student Services Buildings. Hours are:

• Aug. 21 through 23: 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
• Aug. 26: 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Aug. 27 through 30: 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
• Sept. 3 through 6, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The Ventra fare payment system will allow students to add money to the card for PACE fares year-round, and for CTA fares when school is not in session or students are not taking a full-time course load. Ventra cards will be valid for five years and will not be replaced each semester.

The ID Center will have preprinted passes ready for pick up by students who were registered for a full-time course load and had an i-card photo on file by Aug. 4. Because the Ventra U-PASS cannot be printed onsite during the campus distribution, passes for other students must be ordered from the CTA for delivery to the ID Center. According to the CTA, delivery will take three business days.

The CTA U-Pass is available to all full-time UIC students, who pay a $140 per semester nonrefundable fee. The pass provides unlimited rides on CTA buses and trains when school is in session, beginning five days before classes start and ending five days after the last day of finals week.

To pick up a U-Pass, students must show valid UIC i-card. Each student can get his or her pass only.

A $50 fee is charged to replace lost U-Passes. Replacement cards are now ordered through the ID center instead of in-person at CTA headquarters.

The U-Pass program includes paratransit services for students who can’t use public transportation due to disability. For more information, contact the Disability Resource Center, 312-413-2183.

For more information on the Ventra U-Pass, e-mail the ID Center at idcenter@uic.edu.

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