By Julia Ross-McGuire | November 15, 2021
In the upcoming years, UAlbany plans to improve transportation by expanding the CDPHP Cycles bike share program and installing an electric trolley.
The university will increase the amount of CDPHP Cycle bikes on the uptown campus from 30 to 40 in spring 2022, according to UAlbany’s Director of Parking and Mass Transit, Jason Jones.
The next of these projects is a 28-30 passenger electric trolley expected to arrive in the Fall of 2022, said Jones.
The trolley will “have a life cycle of 10-12 years, and be used year-round, albeit limited during the winter months. The primary use of the trolley will be for Admissions, Commencement, and other special events,” stated Jones.
The funding for the trolley will be possible through the New York Truck Voucher Incentive Program (NYTVIP), which “helps make it easier for fleets to adopt clean vehicle technologies while removing the oldest, dirtiest diesel engines from New York roads,” according to the NYS government website.
“NYTVIP provides vouchers, or discounts, to fleets across New York State that...scrap a similar older diesel vehicle that is part of their fleet,” per the NYS government website.
To fulfill this requirement, Jones says the school plans on scrapping a 2009 diesel bus.
Amongst these larger initiatives, an unnamed office assistant at the school’s Office of Sustainability stated, “the campus has a fleet management committee that is looking at how we can convert other vehicles to an electric option as well as getting more charging stations for these vehicles and at the university apartments.”
UAlbany’s final initiative is in partnership with the CDTA and is expected to arrive in 2023. The initiative will see the arrival of a high-speed bus that loops the UAlbany campus and is closed to all public traffic, only to be utilized by CDTA buses.
The bus line will be funded by a $61 million construction grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation.
At a recent Student Association meeting, Todd Foreman, Vice President of Finance and Administration, stated that the current transportation fee of $328 will be decreasing to $323 next year despite these new transportation initiatives. The cash balance to cover these costs is presently 20%, with Foreman hoping to reduce it to 10%.
In addition to these initiatives at the university, students will have an opportunity to embark on more green transportation with FlixBus, a company that provides intercity bus services, as it increases its service with a new route from Schenectady and Albany to NYC. The route had its maiden voyage last Thursday, Nov 4.
In the past, the bus has not functioned as a long-distance route, with this newly announced route expanding the company's former business model.
FlixBus has also made efforts to establish itself as a green company with its buses achieving “a high level of efficiency in terms of fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.”
To further reach carbon neutrality, Flixbus also provides customers with the option to “purchase ‘CO2 Compensation’ tickets, thereby making a voluntary environmental contribution when completing your booking.”