Environmental and alternative traveling starts online

February 11, 2009

University Park, Pa. -- These days it is getting easier, cheaper and “greener” for Penn Staters to get to where they are going. The Transportation Services Parking Office has employed new initiatives that focus on promoting carpooling and bicycle riding on and around campus.

This semester, Penn Staters can flex their environmental muscle in Alternetrides.com’s Spring Campus Challenge. The competition, which is a part of the University’s RideShare program, pits colleges and universities against each other to find which school signs up the most carpoolers during the month of April.

Students looking to share a ride can match up with others who are heading home, riding to campus or taking a trip to one of the big cities.

“It’s a great way to get a ride home, save money and meet new people,” Jean Harris, manager of parking, said. “The challenge recognizes the school with the most active carpoolers. It gives Penn State some notoriety as a college that really cares about the environment.”

For more information on RideShare and the Spring Campus Challenge, visit http://www.alternetrides.com or contact Harris at jeh8@psu.edu.

Also moving its way to the Internet, Penn State’s bicycle registration process has gone entirely online.

Students, faculty and staff must visit the Transportation Services Web site at http://www.transportation.psu.edu to register their bicycles. Once the bicycle is registered, Parking will send the registration sticker in the mail.

“This is very convenient because people don’t have to worry about bringing their bikes to University Police or the parking kiosks,” Harris said. “We have almost 2,000 registered bikes and people have been really happy with the online registration process.”

Bicycle registration helps University officials track down stolen bicycles, identify abandoned ones, and keep an accurate log of how many people are riding bikes.

According to Director of Transportation Services Teresa Davis, the University is in the middle of implementing a new bike plan, which includes the online registration, as well as adding bike racks and climbing lanes — which are designated uphill bike lanes that keep bikers a safe space away from traffic — to campus.

“We want to provide a strategy that will improve bicycle circulation on campus and also keep safety, convenience and wellness in mind,” Davis said.

“We should all want to ride in a more environmentally friendly way,” Harris said. “Anything we can do to reduce the number of vehicles on campus is a good thing.”

For more information on bicycle registration and the University’s new bike plan, visit http://www.transportation.psu.edu/bicycles/ or contact Davis at tad6@psu.edu.

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated March 19, 2009