Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 49.76
Liaison Aurora Sharrard
Submission Date Feb. 28, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Pittsburgh
OP-18: Support for Sustainable Transportation

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Gina Gowins
Alternative Transportation Coordinator
Parking, Transportation & Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution provide secure bicycle storage (not including office space), shower facilities, and lockers for bicycle commuters?:

A brief description of the facilities for bicycle commuters:

The University has 182 bike racks, which provide approximately 1,136 bicycle parking spaces across campus. Out of the 182 racks, 49 are covered (27%). We also offer 50 bicycle lockers, which are located across campus. The bike lockers are rented on a per semester basis. Additionally, two dormitories have bike rooms, which in total have 30 single wall-mounted racks.

Locker rooms and showers are available to students in the following University fitness centers: Baierl Rec Center, Bellefield Hall, Trees Hall, and the William Pitt Union. Trees Hall and Bellefield Hall are also open to University employees. The U Club offers fitness memberships including locker room and shower access for University employees. Student commuter lockers are available for rent in the Cathedral of Learning.

Does the institution provide short-term bicycle parking for all occupied buildings and makes long-term bicycle storage available for students who live on-site (if applicable)?:

A brief description of the bicycle parking and storage facilities:

The University provides long-term bicycle storage at or near residence halls. This includes bicycle rooms that are limited to the resident students, bicycle lockers available for rent, and covered bicycle parking within secure dormitory parking garages. All buildings have short-term bicycle parking available.

Does the institution have a bicycle and pedestrian plan or policy (or adhere to a local community plan/policy) that sets standards and practices for campus streets to enable safe access for all users?:

A brief description of the bicycle and pedestrian plan or policy:

The University complies with the City of Pittsburgh Bicycle Parking Ordinance that governs bicycle parking requirements and safe access for users. The University works with the City on bike infrastructure surrounding campus, including bike lanes. The Parking Office also has rules and regulations to keep all users safe on campus.

Does the institution have a bicycle-sharing program or participate in a local bicycle-sharing program?:

A brief description of the bicycle sharing program:

The City of Pittsburgh has a bike share program, Healthy Ride. Healthy Ride is operated by a local non-profit, Pittsburgh Bike Share. The Healthy Ride system has 50 stations and 500 bikes throughout the city, with an additional 125 stations planned for installation in 2018.

Several Healthy Ride stations are located within Pitt's campus boundaries. This system is easily accessible for Pitt students, faculty, and staff for trips around campus and to surrounding communities. The University of Pittsburgh regularly works with Healthy Ride to provide space close to campus for the bike share stations, and assists in relocating stations when needed to better serve bike share users.

Does the institution offer free or reduced price transit passes and/or operate a free campus shuttle for commuters?:

A brief description of the mass transit programs:

The University offers fare-free public transportation via Port Authority Transit for all students, faculty, and staff. Port Authority buses and light rail vehicles are equipped with proximity card readers compatible with the University's "Panthercard" ID cards. 5.5 million bus rides were registered in Fiscal Year 2017. The University also offers a comprehensive free shuttle system consisting of 25 B3 biofueled buses, 18 of which are in operation on the road at any single time.

An online shuttle tracking system provides real-time information on the location of all campus shuttles. This tracking system can be viewed here: http://www.pittshuttle.com/

Does the institution offer a guaranteed return trip program to regular users of alternative modes of transportation?:

A brief description of the guaranteed return trip program:

In partnership with the University, CommuteInfo provides an Emergency Ride Home (ERH) Reimbursement program to carpool, vanpool, and bikepool members, as well as eligible transit riders. Individuals must arrange their own means of transportation, keep records of their emergency travel expenses, and be registered with CommuteInfo prior to requesting an ERH reimbursement. CommuteInfo can reimburse an individual for a total of 4 trips each calendar year or a cumulative total of $100 worth of trips, whichever limit is reached first. More information about the ERH program can be found on CommuteInfo's website: http://www.commuteinfo.org/comm_erh.shtml

Does the institution participate in a car/vanpool or ride sharing program and/or offer reduced parking fees or preferential parking for car/vanpoolers?:

A brief description of the carpool/vanpool program:

The University partners with CommuteInfo to offer both carpool and vanpool matching services. University permit holders who carpool at least 3 days a week and register their carpool with the Parking Services Office receive a $5.00 per month discount from their permit cost per carpool member, other than the driver. The University Parking Services Office also provides limited free parking for carpool members who must drive on their own on occasion. Two free temporary parking permits are available per carpool member, per academic term.

The University allows its employees that are vanpool participants to pay for their share of vanpool expenses pre-tax. Additionally, CommuteInfo vanpools commuting to Oakland receive complimentary parking on the University campus.

Registered carpools are also offered preferred parking spaces in selected campus parking facilities.

Does the institution participate in a car sharing program, such as a commercial car-sharing program, one administered by the institution, or one administered by a regional organization?:

A brief description of the car sharing program:

Zipcar, an international car-sharing membership program, offers Zipcars throughout the City of Pittsburgh and at the Pittsburgh International Airport. Several Zipcars are located on city streets within the University's campus. The University worked with Zipcar to place a car near our Benedum Hall facility as part of a LEED Gold Certified construction project. Zipcar offers Pitt students a $10 annual membership discount.

Additionally, Pitt Fleet Services offers vehicle rentals to student groups for trips outside of the Oakland area. Students have the ability to rent vehicles for a half day or longer for attendance to workshops, conferences, volunteer events, and other club activities.

Does the institution have one or more Level 2 or Level 3 electric vehicle recharging stations that are accessible to student and employee commuters?:

A brief description of the electric vehicle recharging stations:

We have a total of 16 level 2 charging stations located in University parking garages. 6 chargers were installed in 2016. Charging stations are available for use by both students and employees. They are currently being used by Faculty/staff with paid parking permits, but can be made available to students on a semester basis by request.

Does the institution offer a telecommuting program for employees as a matter of policy or as standard practice?:

A brief description of the telecommuting program:

The University has a comprehensive telecommuting policy for full and part time staff, all temps, as well as temporary and student employees. This policy provides guidance to department leads for making remote work location arrangements with their employees.

The policy provides guidance to establish a procedure for communication with remote employees and an overview of University policies related to technology and security. The policy also covers office ergonomics to ensure that remote employees have the knowledge and ability to create a remote work setting that is healthy and safe. Employees have the option to request both indefinite remote work arrangements and temporary remote work arrangements.

Telecommuting Policy: http://cfo.pitt.edu/policies/documents/policy07-04-03.pdf
Telecommuting Agreement: http://www.hr.pitt.edu/sites/default/files/Remote-Location-Work-Agreement_0.pdf

Does the institution offer a condensed work week option that reduces employee commuting (as a matter of policy or standard practice)?:

A brief description of the condensed work week option:

The University does not offer a formal program, but this may be permitted in selected areas. Work hours are assigned at the discretion of Department heads.

Does the institution have incentives or programs to encourage employees to live close to campus?:

A brief description of the incentives or programs to encourage employees to live close to campus:

The University does not have any specific programs encouraging employees to live close to campus. The University encourages all employees to consider sustainable modes of travel, regardless of their home address. For example, by encouraging employees to carpool and vanpool, emissions from SOVs can be lowered. During new staff orientations, employees are informed about CommuteInfo ridematching services, carpooling, vanpooling, fare-free bus service within the City of Pittsburgh and available campus bicycle facilities.

Does the institution employ other strategies to reduce the impact of commuting (e.g. preferred parking for fuel-efficient vehicles, cash-out of parking programs)?:

A brief description of other strategies to reduce the impact of commuting:

Preferred parking is provided for electric vehicles, carpools, and vanpools.

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Public Fix-It Stations for self-service repairs are located at Benedum Hall and Barco Law Building on campus. The Parking Services Office also offers free tire patch kits in case of a flat tire.

Pitt's Parking, Transportation, and Services department provides helpful information for bicyclists on it's website ( http://www.pts.pitt.edu/Commuting/bicycling/ ) to encourage the use of available bicycling resources. Pitt also publishes a "Bicycling at Pitt" brochure with a bicycle parking map, bike registration form, and information on local trails and bicycle safety. See http://www.pts.pitt.edu/Commuting/bicycling/documents/BicyclingAtPittBrochure_Nov2017.PDF.

In 2016, Parking, Transportation, and Services developed an online Campus Bike Resources Map. This map is accessible on a desktop computer or mobile phone, and provides information about several bicycle amenities on campus, including covered bike racks, uncovered bike racks, bike lockers, Fix It Stations, bike lanes, bike-friendly roads, and the Parking Services Office. Users of the map can get directions through Google from their current location to any bike resource on campus. The map can be viewed here: www.bikemap.pitt.edu

The University also works with Commuteinfo, a program of the Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission committed to promote alternative and shared commuting in Southwestern Pennsylvania. Pitt's Parking, Transportation, and Services website provides a link to Commuteinfo, which offers information on bikepooling, safe cycling, and other tips. The University also works with local organizations like Bike Pittsburgh and Port Authority Transit to promote bicycling and multi-modal commuting (all Port Authority buses are equipped with a bike rack).

The University of Pittsburgh offers a Qualified Commuter Expense Reimbursement Account which allows employees to pay for certain work related commuting expenses with tax-free dollars. The Qualified Commuter Expense Reimbursement Account consists of two types of accounts: the qualified parking expense account and the qualified mass transit expense account. The mass transit account only covers transit providers outside of Allegheny County (those that are not covered under the existing Pitt ID Port Authority agreement). Employees can choose to participate in one and/or both accounts.

Parking, Transportation & Services recently launched an app for the Safe Rider service to allow request to be made from a smartphone, helping to make the service more user-friendly for students, faculty, and staff. http://www.pc.pitt.edu/transportation/documents/QuickRideDirections.pdf

The Pitt Bicycle Collective student club was recently awarded funds through the University's annual Sustainable Solutions Competition to construct a Bicycle Co-op:
https://pittnews.com/article/117502/top-stories/pitt-bike-co-op-aims/ The Co-op was constructed and began operation in the fall of 2017.

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.