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3 College Sophomore

Parking: Only juniors and seniors can get on campus parking, but sophomores and freshmen can find private parking fairly close by off campus.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Parking: There are a lot of spots near Thayer, which is not directly on the campus but very close and on the main college strip.

2 College Freshman

Parking: College freshman don't have cars on campus, and only a small amount of upperclassmen do. I've heard finding parking is hard, but that's about it.

1 College Freshman

Parking: Not much need for a car in the first place. But parking is sparse and not easily procured.

3 people found this useful Report
1 College Sophomore

Parking: There is hardly any parking on campus and off campus spots can also be hard to come by or expensive.

1 person found this useful Report

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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Do you like your car? Do you have a financial or emotional incentive to keep it in peak condition? Have you become accustomed to convenient and free parking? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you might want to seriously reconsider bringing your car to campus. The cruel winters and even crueler parking cops make street parking a dangerous proposition. If a snowplow doesn’t hit your car, a $10 ticket will. It’s widely known that the Providence city government is funded largely on parking tickets. Having a car, therefore, will probably cost you another $50 a month in parking tickets. It’s not as bad as the big cities, but you will start to get frustrated with the little orange friends you find on your windshield.

Brown parking also leaves a lot to be desired. Upperclassmen are usually able to get a university parking spot in a safe, covered lot, but there are far fewer good spots than students who want them. Most underclassmen are forced to park in a lot that’s so far away it is only accessible by car. Private parking lots are the most popular choice for students, but they come at a high cost. Most students choose not to bring a car until senior year when they can park at an off-campus house or get a good university parking spot.

Facts & Statistics

Student Parking Lot?
Freshmen Allowed to Park?
Approximate Parking Permit Cost
$720 per year
Common Parking Tickets
  • Brown lots without a permit: $25-$75
  • Expired meter: $10
  • Handicapped zone: $50
  • No parking zone: $15
Best Places to Find a Spot
  • There are a few good secret spots in alleys or on un-metered streets, and if you are patient, you can circle the campus a few times and usually find something.
  • The meters are poorly placed and usually broken, so the odds of getting a completely free space are good, but you will have to move your car every two hours.
  • As you get farther from campus, the time limits become more liberal, the spaces more plentiful, and the odds of getting ticketed much lower.
Good Luck Getting a Spot Here
  • On a rainy or snowy day, don't even think about trying to drive in and find a spot around campus or on Thayer.
  • On most days, the two-hour parking limit keeps cars shuffling and makes the dismal prospect of finding a spot evenly difficult anywhere around campus.
Getting a Parking Permit
Permits and spaces are handed out through a seniority basis lottery. The lottery is held the second Monday of April for spaces to be given out the following year. Freshmen who bring cars to campus are not given access to the official Brown parking system. Keeping a car is not really feasible for any student, and most will find that it is not necessary.
Parking Services
Brown University Police and Security
75 Charleslfield St.
(401) 863-3157

Student Polls

How convenient is off-campus parking?    Based on 56 responses

  • 2% It's free, and there are usually plenty of spots.
  • 27% It's free, but spots fill up quickly.
  • 7% The cost is reasonable, and there are usually plenty of spots.
  • 34% The cost is reasonable, but spots fill up quickly.
  • 9% The cost is totally outrageous, but you can usually find a spot.
  • 21% The cost is totally outrageous, and there are never any open spots.

Rate the campus parking on the following topics    Based on 56 responses

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