Wide range of alternative commuting options available for the Virginia Tech community
September 3, 2019
Free trips on Blacksburg Transit, monthly savings on Smart Way bus passes, and reduced fees for carpooling passes are just some of the alternative commuting benefits all Virginia Tech employees can take advantage of with their Hokie Passports.
Each day, thousands of Virginia Tech employees commute more than 30 minutes to get to work on the Blacksburg campus. The majority commute from the Roanoke area, but many others commute from Giles, Pulaski and Floyd counties.
Virginia Tech offers a variety of alternative transportation options that can help commuters save time, money, and reduce their carbon footprint.
Employees who live in Blacksburg or Christiansburg can take advantage of Blacksburg Transit (BT). The service is free to all employees who present their Hokie Passport upon boarding.
BT operates 69 buses that serve 18 routes in Blacksburg and Christiansburg. Passengers can also use Blacksburg Transit to make connections to other bus lines, with service to locations that include Radford, Roanoke, and Washington, D.C.
The Smart Way bus is a commuter service that provides transportation between Squires Student Center and the Roanoke Valley – with additional stops in Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Salem and Roanoke – for $4 each way.
This shuttle can be used to connect to the Roanoke Amtrak station as well as the Roanoke Regional Airport Monday through Saturday. Smart Way offers a special transfer option to allow travelers returning to the airport on a Sunday to use the Roanoke Airport Transportation Services shuttle for $4. Monthly passes are available to Virginia Tech faculty, staff, and students for 25 percent off the normal price.
Smart Way Express
Employees traveling to and from the university’s main campus in Blacksburg and the Roanoke campus that includes the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and the Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC can do so by riding the Smart Way Express free of charge. The shuttle makes four stops in Blacksburg: Goodwin Hall, Life Sciences Building, and two at the Corporate Research Center. Buses are equipped with WiFi and bicycle racks.
The shuttle is available on a first-come, first-served basis to anyone with a valid ID from Virginia Tech, Carilion Clinic, Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine, Fralin Biomedical Research Institute, or Radford University Carilion.
Small group commuting options
For employees who prefer riding with a smaller group of coworkers, carpooling and vanpooling commuting options are also available. Riders can share the cost with others.
Carpooling: Two or more full-time faculty/staff can register for a carpool permit. This package includes one carpool permit, access to reserved carpool parking spaces in the front of most parking lots, five free daily passes per participant (participants may also purchase additional daily passes). Carpoolers are also encouraged to register with RIDE Solutions to gain access to their Guaranteed Ride Home program, which provides members with a free ride home in the event of an emergency. Registration is free, and it will also give you access to regional carpool matching to help pair you with another commuter.
Vanpooling: The Virginia Tech Employee Vanpool Program is available for full-time, permanent employees for commuting purposes. Vanpool benefits include shared costs, reserved parking, inexpensive fueling at Fleet Services, access to RIDE Solutions’ Guaranteed Ride Home program, and included van maintenance.
Bike, Bus, and Walk Program:
The Bike, Bus, and Walk program is available to Virginia Tech faculty, staff, and students who use alternative transportation methods as their primary means of commuting to campus, including transit, bicycling, and/or walking. Bike, Bus, and Walk semester permits are $40 and year permits are $80. Bike, Bus and Walk participants receive 16 discounted daily parking permits per semester (32 discounted daily parking permits per year).
Employees are also encouraged to take advantage of bike share for getting to and from campus. There are currently 75 bikes in circulation in the Roam NRV network, with 12 stations located across Blacksburg and Christiansburg.
Pick up a bike in Christiansburg in the morning, drop it off on campus at one of the eight stations at Virginia Tech during the day, and bike home to Christiansburg in the evening.
- Traveling between Blacksburg and the National Capital Region? New lower individual fares on Campus Connect Bus
- RIDE Solutions launches new mobile app with instant ridematching, rewards, and more
- 10 safety tips for commuters new to cycling