l-r: Faculty Wayne Ouderkirk; Center for Distance Learning Dean Thomas Mackey; Faculty Jude Nordhoff; President Alan Davis, Director of Environmental Sustainability Sadie Ross; School for Graduate Studies Dean Robert Clougherty
(Saratoga Springs, N.Y. -- Sept. 27, 2010) College employees and members of the local press gathered outside 2 Union Ave. today to mark the official opening of the SUNY Empire State Bike Share Program.
With the start of this program, the college community will be able to borrow bikes to travel between offices at Union Avenue and West Avenue in Saratoga Springs. President Davis gave opening remarks about the new college initiative to those gathered for the kick-off. “This Bike Share Program is another step towards our commitment to become a carbon neutral college,” the president said, referencing his signing of the American College and Universities President’s Climate Commitment.
SUNY Empire State College is not the first to develop a bike share program. Many campuses across the nation have their own version of bike sharing efforts. What makes Empire State College’s program different is the participants. Empire State College does not have a traditional campus with young residents living in dormitories or even off-campus housing. Although the bikes will be available to students, most of the participation will come from the 600 or so employees Empire State College has in Saratoga Springs as well as employees that come to Saratoga for meetings and conferences. Employee participant is just one example of the college’s dedication to sustainability. One of the goals of the Environmental Sustainability Committee is to pass this enthusiasm on to the students to create well-rounded learners.
Two bikes will be kept on the bike rack outside of 113 West Ave. and two bikes will be kept on the bike rack at 2 Union. Bikes will be brought indoors from 5 p.m. on Friday until 8:30 a.m. on Monday. Anyone that would like to sign out a bike must sign a waiver and register for the bike online. To ensure the safety of riders, each bike will have a helmet secured to it for use by the rider.
Although the 1.5 mile ride across town will not offer much in the way of exercise, biking across town will not only reduce emissions but also will help reduce traffic congestion in the downtown Saratoga Springs area and provide an opportunity to get outside during the workday and enjoy cycling through the beautiful historic town.
To find out more about the Bike Share Program, or to sign up to use a bike, visit the Environmental Sustainability Committee’s website on the commons at commons.esc.edu/envsustain.