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4 College Junior

Parking: there are enough spots for cars, although you may not always get the lots closest to campus, but the farthest you may have to walk is less than 10 minutes, from one end of campus to the other. the security officers are very strict about tickets - you can't park on campus on week nights past 2am. you don't really need a car on campus, but it is more convenient to go shopping at the local mall or take classes at neighboring colleges if you have one


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The students and the administration at Amherst take the parking situation here very seriously. Realizing that many students choose to bring their cars to campus, the College juggles the available spaces each year and changes parking lot assignments in order to ensure that student lots will not be too small to accommodate the number of cars. What’s more, the cost of parking permits here is significantly lower than at other comparable institutions. The parking regulations are a bit cumbersome to read and learn, but that doesn’t change the overall situation: There are almost always enough spaces, the fines are not that bad, and campus police really try to be helpful and responsive to student needs (to a certain extent, of course). There is also a parking garage within walking distance of campus.

Some of the complaints about the parking situation here involve the relatively large distance that some students have to walk back to their rooms after having parked their cars in student lots. Few students have had their cars broken into, so they call for the expansion of available locations for students to park on campus. The campus police are usually finicky about enforcing the parking regulations, and the majority of student drivers have felt it in their checking accounts.

Facts & Statistics

Student Parking Lot?
Registered student cars are allowed to park in the O'Connell Lot, and the Hills Lot during any time of the day. They can also be parked at the Orr Rink Lot from 8 a.m.-2 a.m.
Freshmen Allowed to Park?
Approximate Parking Permit Cost
$60 per year
Common Parking Tickets
  • Failure to yield to pedestrians: $25
  • Falsification of a parking permit or application: $100–$200
  • Fire lane: $50
  • Handicapped parking violation: $50
  • No parking zone: $15
  • Operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs: $100–$200
  • Parked on grass or sidewalk: $25
  • Parking a car not registered with the school in a school lot: $15
Best Places to Find a Spot
  • Drew House parking lot
  • Mayo-Smith parking lot
Good Luck Getting a Spot Here
  • Next to academic buildings
  • Next to the gym
Getting a Parking Permit
The College allocates separate parking lots for students and faculty. First-year students are not allowed to park their cars on campus, except for highly unusual circumstances that the Dean of Students Office must approve. Each upperclass student can register one car only. Usually there isn’t a shortage of parking spaces.
Parking Services
Campus Police
(413) 542-2291

Student Polls

How convenient is off-campus parking?    Based on 17 responses

  • 12% It's free, and there are usually plenty of spots.
  • 29% It's free, but spots fill up quickly.
  • 29% The cost is reasonable, and there are usually plenty of spots.
  • 24% The cost is reasonable, but spots fill up quickly.
  • 6% The cost is totally outrageous, but you can usually find a spot.
  • 0% The cost is totally outrageous, and there are never any open spots.

Rate the campus parking on the following topics    Based on 18 responses

Very poor
  • Distance from class
  • Distance from dorms
  • Ease of finding a spot
  • Parking enforcement
  • Permit cost

What are the best places to find a parking spot on campus?    Based on 7 responses

  • 44% Tennis courts
  • 33% Mayo-Smith parking lot
  • 11% Drew House parking lot
  • 11% Behind the police station

What are the worst places to look for a parking spot on campus?    Based on 8 responses

  • 67% Next to academic buildings
  • 22% Next to the gym
  • 11% Cohan dormitory
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