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Parking and Getting Around - Gaithersburg

Visitors to NIST Gaithersburg may access the site, between 6:00 AM- 5:00 PM, through the Visitor Center from the main gate (Gate A) at W. Diamond Ave. and Bureau Drive, unless otherwise instructed by your NIST sponsor or if a disability requires you to remain in your vehicle.  

All visitors must be preregistered and present photo identification upon arrival. International visitors are required to present a passport. See the Campus Access and Security page for details.  

Make sure you bring your NIST sponsor’s name and contact information, including building and room number.   Most buildings on site require a  badged NIST escort to access.  (Conference attendees are normally directed to meet in public access areas.)

Some restrictions involving foreign national access require escorting these visitors to and from the Visitor Center, and at all times they are on the campus. The sponsor is clearly notified about these requirements at the time of authorization.

Site Access for Conference Attendees with Disabilities

NIST visitors and conference attendees with disabilities are able to remain in their vehicles for the clearance process rather than having to exit their vehicles. Visitors should access the site using the Main Gate, which is located at 100 Bureau Drive.  Please alert conference program and/or the Visitor Center staff (301-975-8986) prior to the event if you will need assistance.

Driving a personal vehicle

  • If you are driving, Visitor Center staff will provide directions to the building where you have arranged to meet your sponsor.  
  • Arrange to meet your sponsor either in the parking lot or at the entrance to the building.
  • Temporary visitor/guest parking passes are issued at the Visitor Center and may not exceed five (5) days in duration.  These must be displayed in your vehicle while on site.
  • Parking is free. Visitors may park in any space not marked or reserved.

Arriving by taxi or bus

  • If you are coming by taxi or bus, you will be dropped off at the Visitor Center. 
  • NIST Gaithersburg is a large campus. You can either plan to walk from the Visitor Center to your sponsor's building or arrange to be met at the Visitor Center by your NIST sponsor.  If you plan to walk, Visitor Center staff will provide directions to the building where you have arranged to meet your sponsor.


  • Bicycles may only be parked for the day at designated bicycle racks or day-use bicycle lockers.  
  • Bicycles may not be parked, secured or stored against railings, light posts or signposts of any kind.
  • Bicycles are not permitted inside NIST buildings.
  • Bicycle racks and day-use bicycle lockers are available on a first come, first served basis, and are not assigned to individuals. 
  • Bicycles do not require a parking pass.
Created August 8, 2016, Updated May 23, 2022