Skip to main content
Publish date:

Where's the cheapest parking in downtown Minneapolis?

Parking can be a real pain downtown, particularly when you get stung.

Anyone else find themselves wanting to go to a restaurant downtown but drop these plans when parking enters the equation?

I know it puts me off, which is why for the first Bring Me The News Tip Jar column I've taken a look at what your best bet is for cheap and convenient places to leave your car when wining and dining in central Minneapolis.

On-street parking

This will likely be the cheapest way to park downtown – the issue is finding a space.

The best thing about on-street parking is that most spots are free over the weekend – but even during weekdays range from $0.25 to $2.50-per-hour, which is far cheaper than paying in a ramp.

You can find the prices of on-street parking in downtown here.

City-owned lots

The City of Minneapolis owns a handful of surface parking lots that are considerably cheaper than municipal and private-owned ramps.

The cheapest of these within reasonable walking distance of downtown is the 3rd Avenue North Lot, by the Northstar station near Target Field. It charges daily prices ranging from $3-7.

The Glenwood Lot by the Farmer's Market is a bit of a haul from downtown, but charges only $1 for the first hour and $3-$10 for event parking (good for Twins games).

If you're in the Loring Park area, the Basilica Lot charges $5 a day.

Private ramps/lots

If you go into downtown without a plan and pick the first parking ramp you see, you could get stung by some pretty steep private ramp prices.

You can search the prices of downtown parking lots using sites like Parkopedia, and using this I've found some private lots that aren't priced too badly.

  • 500 S. 3rd St. Lot – $4 for 0-2 hours, $6 for 2-3 hours, $8.75 for 3-12 hours. After 4 p.m. $2/hour. Weekends $2 all day.
  • Hennepin County Government Center Garage – $4 for 1 hour, $5 for 1-2 hours, $7 for 2-3 hours, $9 for 3-4 hours. Closed on weekends.
  • Minneapolis Central Library – $4 for 1 hour, $5 for 1-2 hours, $6 for 2-3 hours, $9 for 3-4 hours.
  • NRG Energy Center, 324 9th Street S – $3 for 1 hour, $6 for 1-2 hours, $7.50 for 2-3 hours. $5 all day Saturday and Sunday.
  • 729 Portland Ave. S. garage – $5.50 daytime Mon-Fri (8 a.m.-3 p.m.), $2.50 evening parking, $2.50 on weekends up to 24 hours.

City-owned ramps

The city also owns 15 ramps downtown that vary in price, with those most centrally located likely to cost you more.

Ramps A, B and C aren't too pricey at $4 an hour, $12 for the day on weekdays –though that'll change to event pricing on Timberwolves/Lynx/Twins game days.

The best ramp closest the center of downtown is the Hawthorne Parking ramp (31 N. 9th St.), which charges $4 an hour and $9 for the day.

The following city-owned ramps charge $3-an-hour and either $5 or $7 for all-day parking. The only issue is they're in the Warehouse District and by the Walker Art Center.

  • Riverfront Parking Ramp, 212 9th Ave South.
  • Mill Quarter Municipal Ramp, 711 South 2nd Street.
  • Vineland Place, 727 Vineland Place.

By a light rail station

Here me out here – but the light rail takes you direct into downtown and in most cases won't cost you a penny to park at.

Plonk your car in one of the streets near to the 38th Street station in south Minneapolis, for example, and save money by getting on the light rail and paying only $2 each way.

The Tip Jar is BMTN editor Adam Uren's advice column on how to spend, save, and live with confidence. Read past columns here.

Next Up

unsplash football helmet ground

Judge upholds star QBs suspension for state championship game

Sam Backer, of Chatfield Senior High, won't be allowed to play in Friday's title game.

Screen Shot 2021-11-25 at 7.53.37 AM

Another 5,000 lbs. of goldfish removed from Carver County lakes

It all likely stemmed from people dumping their pets into local waters a few years ago.

Rosaleia Shelton

Appeal to find 19-year-old missing from Bloomington

The teen left her home on Monday afternoon.

hospital, emergency room

Deaths of twin fetuses after woman was shot ruled a double homicide

The woman was shot in the abdomen in mid-September.

Payton Willis / Gopher Basketball

Gophers improve to 5-0 with win over Jacksonville

The Gophers are establishing momentum early in the season.

Anthony Edwards

Ant's massive slam leads Timberwolves to fifth straight win

The dunk didn't count, but provided the highlight of the night.

Cam Talbot / Minnesota Wild

WIld arrive late, Cam Talbot stays on point to beat Devils

Despite a 30-minute delay, the Wild picked up a 3-2 victory.

Screen Shot 2021-11-24 at 4.10.54 PM

Appeal to find 35-year-old missing from Oak Grove home

Police say he's not believed to be in danger.

vote, election

7 MN Republicans urge states to audit 2020 election results

There has been no evidence of significant fraud in any single U.S. state.


downtown Minneapolis, parking

Say goodbye to free weekend parking in downtown Minneapolis

The meter changes introduced last week by the City of Minneapolis affects weekend parking.

The Tip Jar: How much money can you save giving up your car commute?

We had a race – car vs. bike vs. bus – to see whether it's worth your time giving up your car.

Where to score the best deals once Christmas is over

Prices in certain categories are slashed once the holiday is over.

6 ways to save money on your Christmas decorating

It's the time of year when everyone is decking their halls.

The Tip Jar: Ways to make extra cash with very little effort

Marketers will pay you to take surveys, watch TV, or go to a bar.

I sold my Bitcoin, and it had nothing to do with money

I freaked out when I read about how much energy it uses.

The Tip Jar: Costco vs. Sam's Club, which is cheaper?

We also compared the 2 wholesalers' prices with a regular grocery store.

Finding the best happy hours in downtown Minneapolis

Downtown can be pricey, but not if you go at the right times.