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3 College Freshman

Parking: It's pretty convenient for the the most part.

3 College Junior

Parking: There was an attempt to "change driving culture" on campus. It is basically impossible to drive to class because there are no student lots near any academic buildings. This is fine though because they campus is very walkable. Dorm parking is great except when there are parking bans due to poor weather, then it can be difficult to find a spot.

2 College Junior

Parking: Spots are far from classes. Students are not allowed to park on campus during the week days.

3 College Freshman

Parking: It's okay. Nobody drives to class.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Parking: Seems like parking is pretty much always availbable

2 people found this useful Report

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Parking on campus favors upperclassmen and students who reside in social houses and apartments because many come equipped with their own lots, but the best parking is reserved for faculty, administrators, and guests. However, while Bowdoin's parking situation isn't perfect, students view it as pretty good, or at least adequate. The campus is so small that even the farthest parking space is not too far of a walk from anywhere. Spots fill up very quickly, though, as do parking spots in the rest of town. First-years are no longer allowed to bring cars to school, but there are a few tales of wealthy parents paying for a place off campus for their first-year son or daughter to store a vehicle.

The parking permit system relies on color-coded decals that designate where you can park. To preserve campus beauty, the College has avoided putting up many parking signs and relies on students' ability to figure out where they are permitted to park. If students do park in the wrong lot, they will be ticketed and possibly towed, and one main student complaint is that they do not get adequate warning to move their car before it is towed. Students can receive a maximum of six parking tickets in an academic year, at which time they will have their parking privileges revoked.

Facts & Statistics

Student Parking Lot?
There are multiple parking lots that are designated by color. Some lots are only for students who live in certain apartments or for seniors (Coffin Street).
Freshmen Allowed to Park?
Approximate Parking Permit Cost
$40 per year
Common Parking Tickets
  • No parking zone: $25
  • Fire lane: $25
  • Misuse of parking decal: $100
  • Handicapped zone: $200
Best Places to Find a Spot
Coffin Street (for seniors), Farley Field House, Park Row, side streets, by Smith Union, or student lots.
Getting a Parking Permit
Students must register their vehicle with the Office of Safety and Security and will then receive a pre-numbered, color-coded parking permit (colors determine which lot you can park in). When cars are found parked in the wrong area, you will receive a parking ticket, and Campus Safety reserves the right to revoke a parking permit at any time. First-year students are not allowed to have vehicles on campus.
Parking Services
Office of Safety and Security
Rhodes Hall
(207) 725-3314
Did You Know?
Students who live on the central campus are assigned to the Coffin Street lot, the Farley Field House lot, or the Stanwood Street lot. Students in college apartments park or houses at their residence.

Student Polls

How convenient is off-campus parking?    Based on 54 responses

  • 37% It's free, and there are usually plenty of spots.
  • 39% It's free, but spots fill up quickly.
  • 13% The cost is reasonable, and there are usually plenty of spots.
  • 11% The cost is reasonable, but spots fill up quickly.
  • 0% 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 50 responses

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