All parkers FAQ
MIT strives to be accessible to all. Click here for a map of accessible parking, ramps, and more.
All MIT parkers who commute may register up to three vehicles on a parking account. Only one vehicle at a time is authorized to park on campus. If you have a new car or occasionally drive a different car, simply login to your parking dashboard and update your parking account by adding that vehicle.
If you are a campus resident, you can register only one vehicle at a time. If you have a new vehicle, you can login to your parking dashboard to remove the old one from your account and then add the new one.
If you are driving a temporary vehicle (a rental or loaner), please see the temporary vehicle FAQ below.
The annual parking cycle at MIT runs from September 15 to September 14 of the following year. On September 15 every year, the annual cap resets for parkers that have caps. Note that once you establish a parking account, the account is maintained continuously until you cancel it (as long as you continue to be eligible), so there is no annual renewal process. Note also that MIT reserves the right to implement periodic parking rate increases, and any increase will take effect when the next parking cycle begins on September 15.
Having an MIT parking account does not guarantee that you will be able to find a space in your authorized area or lot. If there are no spaces left in the lot where you usually park, go to another lot in your zone or call the Parking & Transportation Office for assistance.
Once you apply for parking and are approved, you will begin to incur a prorated annual charge (if you pay a daily rate) or monthly fees (if you pay a monthly rate) as of the day your parking is authorized. Please check your parking confirmation email, and contact the Parking & Transportation Office if you want to adjust the beginning date of your parking.
You can cancel your parking at any time through your online parking dashboard or by contacting the Parking & Transportation Office. To obtain parking after canceling, you would need to submit a new parking request form. Note that for affiliates and other monthly-rate parkers, it is important to contact the Parking & Transportation Office if you no longer need parking; otherwise, you will continue to be charged the monthly parking fee.
Eligible employees and students who are interested in forming a carpool should follow these steps:
- First, agree with at least one other employee or student (up to five people) to sign up for a carpool together.
- If you already have a parking account as an individual, you will need to cancel that account before joining a carpool.
- The carpool “leader” chooses “Carpool” for permit type when requesting parking. The leader then uses the carpool form to send invitations to the other participants via their MIT email addresses. All carpool members must be MIT employees or students.
- All of the carpool invitations must be accepted before the Parking & Transportation Office can fulfill the carpool parking request.
- If one of the invited members declines to join the carpool, the carpool request is dissolved. You can reapply for a carpool with an adjusted list of invited members.
- More than one vehicle can be included in a carpool account, but only one of the carpool vehicles can park on campus at a time.
- Details about parking rates for carpools are available here.
Any changes to the carpool agreement (such as adding/removing members or dissolving the carpool) should be discussed first with the Parking & Transportation Office. If a carpool change is made by the Parking & Transportation Office, the change will take effect at the beginning of the next calendar month, after which it will be reflected in billing. Note that if you have a subsidized commuter rail pass through MIT, you are not eligible for a carpool.
If your status at MIT has changed (from student to employee, for example, or from active faculty to retired faculty) and you have questions about parking, contact the Parking & Transportation Office.
If you have a valid reason (such as a medical problem) for requesting a change in parking location, contact the Parking & Transportation Office. We may be able to assist. Please see the Medical Request FAQ below.
You can make changes to your parking preferences at any time. Some changes can be made through your parking dashboard (such as adding or removing a vehicle). For other changes, such as a change in payment method or to request a change in parking location, please contact the Parking & Transportation Office.
If you want to change your parking payment method (for example, from credit card auto-pay to paying through a student account), contact the Parking & Transportation Office, and we can make this change for you.
If you have questions about where to park a charter bus or van, contact the Parking & Transportation Office. We will go over the details with you and evaluate parking options on a case-by-case basis.
To pay for parking via credit card auto-pay, you provide your credit card information when you request parking, and you authorize monthly charges. Each month, the Parking & Transportation Office will automatically charge your credit card based on your parking activity. You will receive a receipt each time you are charged, and the charge will appear on your credit card statement (currently as MIT_OPE_PARK - CAMBRIDGE, MA).
Parking coordinators can request parking for a department vehicle. This request can be made through the parking app dashboard and is paid via Journal Voucher only. Departments pay a one-time annual fee for vehicles, and the cost object needs to be confirmed each year. There are no daily parking fees.
To be considered a department vehicle, the vehicle must be owned by and registered to MIT. All MIT-owned vehicles that park in MIT parking areas must be authorized to park by the Parking & Transportation Office.
If a department vehicle is assigned to a gated facility, the Parking & Transportation Office will issue a parking access card to be used for the department vehicle only. Any misuse of the parking access cards may cause the parking privileges for that vehicle to be forfeited.
An MIT parker who has a valid parking permit and disability plates or a state placard should park in designated accessible spaces in their assigned parking area. If accessible spaces in that area are full, contact the Parking & Transportation Office. No additional action is required.
MIT students, faculty, staff, and visitors may charge electric vehicles while parked on campus. Currently, the campus has 14 charging stations offering a total of 24 pumps, available at the Stata and E62 garages, the North Area at Building 46, and the West Area at WW15.
To use the charging stations, you need to set up a ChargePoint account and receive a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) card. You will pay ChargePoint directly for using a charging station, either through a charge pass or their app.
- An electric vehicle parked for any period of time will pay a per-hour fee for every hour the vehicle is actively charging
- Stata and E62 spaces are open to MIT staff, students, and faculty
- The North Area at Building 46 and the West Area at WW15 are open to all
- Use the ChargePoint app to locate and reserve open stations
- An electric charging station locator map is also available on the ChargePoint website
ChargePoint is just one of several environmentally friendly commuter options offered through the Parking & Transportation Office. If you have any questions about this or other programs available to the community, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
MIT is currently evaluating whether to incorporate the SmartWay discount program as part of our parking program.
If you have a valid parking account, you may park for no additional charge in any lot on campus after 2:30 PM, Monday through Friday, and all day on weekends and MIT holidays. Participants in a carpool may park any registered car in any lot on campus on weekends for no additional charge. Note that evening and weekend parking is allowed only in spots that are not otherwise reserved.
For non-resident extended or overnight parking, please see the FAQ below.
For event visitors: Certain garages are available for on-campus large event parking, such as sporting events or department functions. Contact DAPER and/or the Parking & Transportation Office for more information. Refer to the MIT recreation parking map for available parking options. View additional tips for travelling to the MIT campus on the MIT Visitor Page.
For event hosts: Note that the Parking & Transportation Office can arrange for a parking attendant if you need one (for an extra per-hour charge).
If you have a valid MIT parking account and need to be out of town on Institute business overnight or for an extended period of time (up to two weeks), you may leave your vehicle in your assigned parking facility. Before leaving the Institute, you should:
- Submit an Extended Parking Notification form
- Designate an emergency contact person who has keys to the vehicle.
- Notify your department Parking Coordinator.
- The Parking & Transportation Office will let you know where to leave your car for extended parking.
- During the winter months, we place extended parkers in roofed areas of garages whenever possible, to facilitate snow removal from roofs and lots.
Please note: Incomplete or late forms will not be approved.
MIT assumes no responsibility for the safety of any vehicle or its contents while parked on Institute property.
Every gated lot has a speakerphone attached to the gate. From 7:00 AM through the day and evening up until 2:30 AM, the black button connects to the Parking & Transportation Office. From 2:30 AM-7:00 AM, you’ll be connected with the MIT Police. In either case, you will connect with someone who can raise the gate (if warranted) from their remote location.
View a list of parking areas on campus.
- If you need to obtain on-campus parking or change your parking location for medical reasons, you will need to contact the MIT Disability Services Office by email at email@example.com or via fax at 617-253-1502, and explain your medical situation. MIT Disability Services Office will then work with the Parking & Transportation Office to figure out a parking solution. (Note: the Disability Services Office handles all medical parking requests regardless of medical situation.)
- Note that MIT parking rates will apply.
- If you have a long-term medical condition that is permanent or progressive, and you wish to park in accessible spaces, you will need to apply for a disability plate or placard from the Registry of Motor Vehicles.
If you are an MIT commuter with a valid parking account, the account covers your motorcycle as well as your car. You do not need a specific motorcycle permit. You can register up to three vehicles (including motorcycles) on your parking account; just use the “+ another vehicle” function on your parking dashboard to add a motorcycle. However, note that only one vehicle at a time may park on campus under each permit.
- You can park a motorcycle in any lot within your designated parking area. Please utilize existing motorcycle spaces if available. Note that motorcycles should not be parked in any campus garages due to safety concerns associated with the ramps and decks. Motorcycles also should not be parked at campus bicycle racks.
- If you are an MIT campus resident (employee or student), you can only register one vehicle at a time on your parking account. Please see the FAQ below (Number of vehicles) about how to switch between your car and your motorcycle.
- MIT employee and student commuters can register up to three permanent vehicles (including motorcycles) on your parking account. Please note that only one vehicle at a time may park on campus.
- MIT campus residents (employees or students) can register only one vehicle on your parking account. If you want to drive a different car or a motorcycle to campus, you can maintain your valid parking status by removing one vehicle (a car, for example) from your account and then adding another vehicle (a motorcycle, for example) to the account. You can use your parking dashboard to add and remove vehicles.
- Note that more than one vehicle can be included in a carpool account, but only one of the carpool vehicles can park on campus at a time.
Your parking authorization is based on a parking account (essentially a collection of information associated with your MIT ID card and your license plate) instead of a physical sticker on your car.
- Parkers in gated lots need an MIT ID to enter and exit through the gates. If you are not authorized to park in a particular area, the gate will not open.
- In ungated lots, parkers' license plates are scanned by License Plate Recognition (LPR) software installed on an MIT Parking Enforcement vehicle that patrols the lots.
You can log into your parking dashboard at any time to view which areas and lots you have been assigned to for parking.
Each department has a Parking Coordinator who is the subject matter expert on all commuting programs available to the department. If you have parking related questions, please consult with your department’s designated Parking Coordinator (or contact the Parking & Transportation Office).
Allocating parking on a campus of this size is a complicated process. If you already have parking, the auto-renewal process will assign you to the same location. If you are a new applicant for parking, we will assign you to the most convenient location based on availability.
Employee commuters: When you request parking, you provide the Parking & Transportation Office with information about where you work, and we make our best effort to find you a parking space within reasonable walking distance, based on lot availability and capacity.
- When we approve you for parking, you will receive a confirmation email stating the specific area of the campus where you are authorized to park. This information will also be included on your parking dashboard. The authorized area may have one or several lots; you can park anywhere within the authorized area (excluding residential and reserved spaces). The confirmation email will include a link to a map showing the locations.
Student commuters: All student commuters (including carpools) park in the Riverside area.
Campus residents: Campus residents park at the lot associated with their residence
- East Campus residents park in the marked Eastgate Residents Parking Area.
- West Campus residents park in the Riverside area.
- Northwest Campus residents park in the 70 Pacific NW86 lot or garage.
- North Campus residents park in the North Area.
- Heads of house park at the lot associated with their residence.
Parking placards are intended for departmental business purposes and allow parking in an area other than your assigned parking area. The parking placard allows a parker with an MIT parking account to park in MIT lots and areas specified on the placard. Placards are not valid without a current MIT parking account.
Placard use is limited to two hours, and parkers must park in legal spaces. Placards are not to be used for all-day parking in more convenient locations.
To obtain a parking placard, contact your Parking Coordinator.
Once established, your parking account is maintained continuously until you cancel it, so there is no need for you to renew the account every year. You can cancel parking or make changes to your parking preferences at any time through your online parking dashboard or by contacting the Parking & Transportation Office.
There are a small number of designated reserved spots in some parking facilities. The Parking Committee actively discourages the designation of any parking space as a reserved spot, especially when it is requested solely for the sake of convenience.
The following are approved exceptions:
- Accessible Parking is reserved for individuals with disability parking plates.
- A few spaces have been reserved for department vehicles. These spaces are justified by the appropriate department on a yearly basis.
All requests for reserved parking spaces must be submitted annually to the Parking & Transportation Office via the department Parking Coordinator. These requests must include justification and an estimate of the space's usage. If a request is not submitted, or if it is denied, the reserved signage for that space will be removed, and the space will return to the regular commuter parking pool.
People who have a placard cannot park in a reserved space. Reserved spaces are only to be used by the authorized person or department.
A scratch card for one-day parking can be purchased in person from the Parking & Transportation Office at the Atlas Service Center (E17-106). Alternatively, a designated MIT employee or staff member with Spend or Commit authorization may purchase a scratch card online through Atlas. View our parking rates to see the current cost of a scratch card.
During snow emergencies, MIT requests that all cars be moved to indoor lots so that the outdoor parking areas may be plowed. For details, please see the regulations and enforcement page.
MIT provides on-campus monthly-rate parking for the spouse or partner of a campus resident. Spouses or partners of parkers who commute should explore our options for campus visitors.
If you need temporary parking at MIT, there are several options, including public lots, scratch cards, and affiliate parking. Please contact the Parking & Transportation Office for more information.
If you have a parking account and are temporarily driving a different vehicle to campus, you do not need an additional permit.
- All MIT parkers who commute may register up to two temporary vehicles on your parking account (in addition to three permanent vehicles); just use the “+ temporary vehicle” function on your parking dashboard to add the temporary vehicle. Temporary vehicle parking automatically expires after 30 days, at which time the temporary vehicle will be removed from your account.
- If you are a campus resident, you can register only one vehicle at a time, regardless of whether it is a permanent or temporary vehicle. If you have a temporary vehicle, you can login to your parking dashboard to remove the permanent vehicle from your account and then add the temporary one. When you are no longer using the temporary vehicle, you can login to your account and switch back.
Note: Only one vehicle at a time may park on campus under each permit, including temporary vehicles.
For information about visitor parking at MIT, please see our visitor page.