A Comprehensive Guide to Campus Parking

Get in, losers, we're going parking.

Get in, losers, we’re going parking.

Tell me if this sounds familiar: You wake up bright and early in the morning, hair washed, makeup perfect, ready for your 8:10 theory class, only to find a slew of campus parking tickets clogging up your windshield. You try to remove them with your ungloved hands only to find they’re frozen solid. Your ice scraper is useless. Poseidon cackles at your undying misery. All of your struggles are in vain.

I nailed it, right? Parking on this campus is everyone’s problem. As signs indicating where and for how long one can park in a spot seem to be “so yesterday,” it’s up to us to use context clues and vague hearsay in order to navigate the fierce, unrelenting world of campus parking lots. I brought my car here after Thanksgiving break, and since then, I’ve been randomly guessing at the vehicle rules everyone learned during the weeklong grace period Safety grants to returning students in September. It’s the worst. Let’s help each other, okay? (And by help each other, I mean help me. I’m drowning in parking tickets. I have no idea which way is up. Please.)


  • On the street in Gambier proper – Downtown Gambier is parking heaven: Clear signage, beautifully visible spot lines, explicit language detailing the city’s fining system… Oh, the power of straightforward communication. Feel free to park here during the day, but don’t exceed the hour limits marked on the abundant signs.
  • Faculty lots (e.g. Olin, Palme, SQuad) – If it’s a weekend or between the hours of 5:00 P.M. and 2:00 A.M., you’re in luck! Your decals get you a free pass to park in any faculty lot. During the day, though, stay away. The full, confusing details can be found on this webpage.
  • Wherever your vehicle is registered – Take a long, hard look at your decal. You’ll figure it out.


  • In front of Peirce – These are AVI spots. Are they marked as such? Probably. This damn snow is obscuring literally everything.
  • Directly behind Peirce – Any South 1 spot with yellow lines is an AVI spot. Don’t park there. People will leave passive-aggressive notes on your windshield (as well they should).
  • In the Mather/McBride loops – Unless you’re popping into your dorm for no more than a hot second (in which case you’d need to call Safety), don’t park here. It’s a fire safety thing.
  • Across from the Hillel center – These are spots for city permit holders. They ain’t for you.
  • Right up next to the KAC – If you’re using the KAC, cool. If not, step off.
  • Any student lot that isn’t on your decal – This one’s pretty self-explanatory. For a full list of student lots, check here again. I couldn’t find an accompanying map, so your guess as to which lot is which is as good as anybody’s.


  • “Allen House Gravel” – You know that weird pseudo-lot right next to the Mather loop? What is it? What does it mean? Who is it for? I really don’t know.
  • Behind Finn House – This area is literally always full. I actually have no idea who parks there. I couldn’t find a single sign. Please help. I’m afraid.

Have opinions regarding parking? Did I get anything wrong? Sound off in the comments.

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