The University of Arizona (UA) has over 40,000 students in attendance on any given day, not including employees and visitors, with vehicles traveling to and from the University, adding congestion to the area surrounding campus. Parking and Transportation Services (PTS) at the UA provides alternative transportation options to students, employees and visitors looking for a more sustainable, convenient and money saving way to travel to campus.
PTS offers a variety of bicycle programs to encourage students, employees and visitors to get around campus. Alternative Transportation Manager Glenn Grafton states, “Riding your bike to campus is a great alternative transportation option because it’s fun, you get exercise, and it saves you money on commuting to the UA.” PTS, a recipient of the Silver-Level Bicycle Friendly award, offers a free Bike Valet program, similar to a car valet program. A bike station also offers bike and safety information, and free tools to better your biking experience. A free Cat Wheels Bike Sharing program is available to UA affiliates wishing to rent a bike for around campus.
Other transportation options include Cat Tran, a free shuttle service for students, employees and visitors. The service provides travel assistance to a variety of locations in and around campus. “The Cat Tran is an easy way to get around, and you don’t have to deal with the traffic and congestion,” Grafton said. PTS also offers UA affiliates a 50 percent subsidized pass for the Sun Tran Bus system, allowing individuals to take the bus for the commute and to travel around Tucson.
The UA Zimride program offers a rideshare and carpooling service for UA affiliates. This free service connects users with social networks, making it easier for members to determine the compatibility of potential members of their carpool. This saves gas, money and provides a more sustainable way to travel to the University. Available since June 2012, Zimride currently has over 2,300 members actively involved.
Individuals looking to leave their cars at home, or need a car while on campus, can look into the use of PTS’ car sharing program by Hertz on Demand. For a low hourly rate, individuals are able to rent a car to take them to their desired destination. The development of Sun Link, the Tucson streetcar, with rail construction estimated for completion in late July, will open up opportunities for individuals to commute to campus using the 3.9-mile route connecting downtown Tucson with the University.
By offering a wide variety of programs, PTS hopes to encourage individuals to travel to campus in a more eco-friendly way and improve congestion around campus, saving time and money. With the help of students, employees and visitors, the University is committed to becoming a more eco-friendly campus and strives to provide sustainable alternatives for transportation.
More information about alternative transportation may be found at: http://www.parking.arizona.edu