Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences
20 Oxford Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
Tel (617) 495-2351
Fax (617) 495-8839
Entrances to the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences are located at 20 Oxford Street (Hoffman Lab), Cambridge, Massachusetts.
We strongly urge using public transportation. However, if you are planning to drive, please be advised that parking near the department is very limited and, in the case of university-owned lots, requires a pre-paid day permit. Please read the parking section below about where and how to park near the department.
By Public Transportation
Taking the MBTA Subway (or the "T")
Take the Alewife Red Line to the Harvard Square stop. Exit through the turnstyles and up the stairway that leads to Harvard Yard, and walk into Harvard Yard to the statue of John Harvard -- from here take the path to your left, exit the yard and veer slightly to the right. The Science Center (a white granite structure with a rock formation in front) will be on your left, and Memorial Hall (a large red brick building with a tall steeple) on your right. (If Memorial Hall is on your left, you are walking in the wrong direction.) This will take you to the intersection of Kirkland and Oxford. Proceed left (westward) down Oxford Street. The main entrance to the department is on the right side of Oxford -- at 20 Oxford Street.
- On-street metered parking: There are limited 2-hour metered spaces available on Oxford and Kirkland Streets (these meters only accept US quarters).
- Commercial parking garages are in Harvard Square, however the Department cannot validate parking for those businesses.
- University Day-Permit Parking: Limited parking is available for department visitors in nearby University-operated parking garages. Day permits can be purchased up to two weeks in advance, whether online (please read the section below, "Purchasing a Parking Pass Online") or in person at the Campus Service Center, Smith Center, 8th floor, 1350 Massachusetts Ave., Mon-Fri 8am-5pm.
Purchasing a Parking Pass Online
A limited number of Daily Visitor Parking Permits are available for purchase online. Daily permits are $14.00. All major credit cards are accepted, and all sales are final (no refunds or exchanges). Before proceeding to the online form, please note the following:
- If you are a first-time user, you will need to register by creating a user name and password.
- Please have your car's license plate number ready. No permit can be purchased without a current plate number.
- We recommend requesting a permit for the 52 Oxford Street Garage.
- You will be asked for the date of the permit. Be sure to select the correct date (permits are not transferable).
- You will need to choose the Earth and Planetary Sciences's department from a drop down list.
- You will need to enter the Department of Earth and Planetary Science's department Code: 3027
Driving directions - From the North
If you are coming by car from the north, take route 93 or 1 south toward Boston. Take the exit for "Storrow Drive-Cambridge". Follow Storrow Drive west for approximately 4 miles. After approximately 2 miles Storrow Drive becomes Soldiers Field road. You will not notice any change. Stay in the right hand lane in order to avoid the many left hand exits off Storrow Drive until you reach the exit marked "Harvard Square/Cambridge." Take the exit and go over the Charles River to the set of lights at Memorial Drive. Go straight ahead through the lights. You will now be on JFK Street. You will enter Harvard Square. After you pass the intersection of JFK and Mt. Auburn Street, you will come to another set of lights where The Coop is on the left, and Out of Town News and the subway "T" stop will be on your right. Go straight (veering slightly to the right) through these lights. You will then approach another fork in the road -- stay to the left of the fork and then immediately get into the right hand lane. This will take you onto Massachusetts Avenue, headed north. Go approximately 0.2 tenths of a mile past the Harvard Law School to Everett Street on your right. At the light at Everett Street, turn right and go to the next set of lights at Oxford Street. Take a right onto Oxford Street; metered parking spaces are on the right. IMPORTANT: Please be advised that parking near the department is very limited, and, in the case of university-owned lots, requires a pre-paid day permit. Please read the parking section above about where and how to park near the department.
From the South
Take route 3 (South East Expressway) north and follow the above directions for Storrow Drive West.
From the West
Take route 90 (Massachusetts Turnpike) east. Get off the Cambridge/Allston exit (#18) and follow signs for Cambridge bearing to the right. As you come off the Turnpike exit, a 10 story hotel is on your right. Begin to move to the left lane as you pass the hotel. There is a traffic light at the corner of the hotel. Go through this light, but be prepared to make a left, before the bridge (do not cross over the bridge). You will now be on an entrance ramp leading onto Storrow Drive with very rapid traffic. Follow Storrow Drive approximately 1/2 mile. Stay in the right hand lane, which will become the "Harvard Square/Cambridge" exit on your right. Follow the directions given above for coming from the north starting with "....Take the exit and go over the Charles River." IMPORTANT: Please be advised that parking near the department is very limited, and in the case of university-owned lots, requires a pre-paid day permit. Please read the parking section above about where and how to park near the department.