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Virginia Tech wins gold award for commuting effort

January 11, 2016

The university has multiple options for commuting.
More than 38 percent of students and employees report that they walk to and from work, and to get around campus. Additionally, nearly 13 percent report that they ride a bike to and from work. The percentages are much higher than the national average of 2.7 percent and 0.6 percent, according to the 2014 American Commuter Survey, respectively.

BLACKSBURG — Virginia Tech earned its seventh straight gold award from the Best Workplaces for Commuters Race for Excellence by increasing alternative transportation participation and improving commuter resources.

During the past year, the university has:

  • Increased the number of transit service routes from the Blacksburg campus and the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Research Institute in Roanoke.
  • Increased sales of carpool permits by 15 percent for employee permits and 3.4 percent for student permits.
  • Supported the growth of its Office of Alternative Transportation into a newly autonomous department.
  • Seen an exponential increase in the number of individuals who visit the Hokie Bike Hub, a bicycle maintenance and commuter education center.
  • Installed shared-lane bicycle pavement markings, sometimes called "sharrows," on Drillfield Drive.
  • Started work to develop a bike share system on the Blacksburg campus.
  • Continued to work toward the completion of a new Parking and Transportation Master Plan.
  • Started work on an upcoming multi-modal educational campaign, the second iteration of the university's Commuter Survey and the first annual Commuter Challenge, all of which will debut in the spring.

To be eligible for a Race for Excellence award, an organization must first be recognized as aBest Workplace for Commuters by meeting the National Standard of Excellence in commuter benefits, a standard established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and maintained by the National Center for Transit Research.

The Best Workplaces for Commuters program encourages sustainable transportation and recognizes organizations that have taken steps to offer transportation options such as vanpool and transit benefits for their employees.

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $513 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.