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Sustainable Campus Transportation Pierce County Higher Education Sustainability Conference Feb 2008 Will Toor, Commissioner, Boulder County.

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Presentation on theme: "Sustainable Campus Transportation Pierce County Higher Education Sustainability Conference Feb 2008 Will Toor, Commissioner, Boulder County."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sustainable Campus Transportation Pierce County Higher Education Sustainability Conference Feb 2008 Will Toor, Commissioner, Boulder County

2 Why sustainable transportation?  Transportation accounts for 32% of US GHG emissions  Automobile dependent land use/transportation systems disadvantage children, the poor,students, and the elderly  Current transportation approaches are fiscally unsustainable and are unable to deliver congestion reduction and economic performance for urban areas  Approaching end of the oil age

3 Key elements  Shift towards electric vehicles powered by renewable electricity: plug-in hybrids hold greatest promise  Land use/transportation connection: compact development reduces trip length, auto mode share  Shift investments from roadway and parking capacity to transit and bike/ped  Shift pricing approaches to send proper price signals

4 Integrated approach required  1. Expanding road/parking capacity increases auto travel and emissions.  2. Expanding transit only decreases emissions about 1%, compared to doing nothing.  3. Expanding transit only and supporting it with land use intensification decreases emissions about 5%.  4. Expanding transit only and supporting it with land use intensification and UGBs decreases emissions about 10%.  5. Expanding transit only and supporting it with higher fuel taxes and with workplace parking charges (refunded in higher wages as cash-in-lieu-of-parking incentives) and shopping parking charges (refunded through lower costs for goods and services) lowers emissions about 10%. It greatly increases economic benefits to all travelers, due to better transit and faster freeways.  6. Expanding transit only and supporting it with land use intensification and with fuel taxes and parking charges, as above, lowers emissions about %. This scenario maximizes economic welfare and reduces congestion most.

5 Why sustainable campus transportation?  Presidents’ climate commitment  Business as usual approaches to parking are fiscally unsustainable and unable to deliver campus mobility  Need better access for students  Approaching end of the oil age

6 Integrated approach required  Transit passes for students and faculty/staff  High performance transit system  Good bike and pedestrian access to and through campus  Housing available for students and faculty/staff in reasonable proximity to campus  Parking pricing sending appropriate price signals to users

7 Old approach: parking focus  Courtesy of Patrick Seigman, Nelson/Nygaard consulting

8 Construction Costs  Surface parking $1500- $5000/space  Structured parking $10,000-$50,000/space  As structured parking increases, monthly rates increase: at CU Boulder 0%=%13.50/month, 20%=$30/month, 100%=$200/month!  All of these assume land has no cost Parking garage construction at Florida Community College, Jacksonville.

9  Courtesy Patrick Seigman, Nelson/Nygaard consulting

10 Elasticity of Demand  When price goes up, demand goes down  Future parking demand projections should include effect of price on demand - otherwise too much parking will be built Photo courtesy of Spenser Havlick

11 UCSB Parking Committee:  "There's some possibility that extremely high parking fees will lead to a substantial exodus to alternative transportation, a serious problem for supporting loan payments for the expensive new garages; we could even face a "death spiral," in which high rates reduce permit demand leading to even higher rates, etc.” –UC parking committee.

12 Colorado State University Study Courtesy of Nelson/Nygaard Associates  Price increases required to expand parking supply at CSU reduce demand in half.

13 New approach: Optimization

14  Optimizing access by all modes  Courtesy of Patrick Seigman, Nelson/Nygaard

15 Cheaper approaches  Transit passes typically cost $5-$15/month; involve no debt  Cost of one new bicycle parking space: ~$150  Market incentives - net revenue gain if parking charges are increased Photo courtesy of University of Colorado Environmental Center

16 Alternative paths  New vision for campus transportation based on:  expanded transit access (routes and pass programs)  market incentives to reduce parking demand  better bike/pedestrian networks  housing closer to campus Photo courtesy of Spenser Havlick

17 Transit Pass Programs  Over 50 universities totaling over 800,000 students and staff offer transit passes  Average cost of $30/student per year  Student ridership increased between 71% and 200% - inaugural year of programs  For info: Shoup and Hess at: Transit super-stop at the University of Colorado, Boulder, CO

18 Transit Pass Economics at the University of Colorado  The University of Colorado-Boulder faculty/staff bus pass reduces parking demand by 350 spaces, at a cost of $1125/space  Cost to add parking - $2723/space  It is 3 times more expensive to add a space than to shift one person to transit!

19 Managing demand through price  Parking demand goes down as price goes up - ~1% per dollar  Switching from free parking to paid parking reduces driving by 15-40%  In many cases managing demand through price increases will actually be less costly to parkers than a supply side approach!  Can also pay people not to drive!

20 Advantages of using financial incentives  No use of debt capacity  Net new revenue can be generated - unlike a supply side approach where new revenue pays for new parking  Low risk approach - easily reversible since no long term debt

21 Stanford University Clean Air Cash Program  Early 1990s created financial incentives to drive less  Employees who choose not to buy a parking permit are paid $144/year  Parking rates raised 15%/year  Net effect: added 2 million square feet of buildings with no increase in traffic! transportation.stanford.edu. Photo courtesy of Stanford University

22 The Bicycle - Vehicle For a Small Planet  One bike parking space costs about $150 - compared to $3000-$30,000 for one car  Efficient use of space  Most energy efficient form of transportation  Low cost to users Photo courtesy of Spenser Havlick, enhancement courtesy of Charles Bloom

23 UC DAVIS - Taking Bicycles Seriously  Generally flat land area  About 15,000 bicycles on campus daily  14 miles of bicycle paths and 12 miles of shared roadway on 832 acres  Bicycle signal heads  Bicycle traffic circle  60% of student trips to campus are bike/ped

24 5 acre parking lot; $10 million structure; or…

25 University of Colorado Approach  University of Colorado, Boulder  Student Pass and Faculty/Staff ECO Pass: Transit passes create demand  HOP, SKIP, JUMP, BOUND, DASH, STAMPEDE: Quality transit service designed by current/potential customers  Quality pedestrian/bicycle systems  Gradual increases to parking rates

26 Boulder’s policy context  1996 Transportation Master Plan  Goal: Cap vehicle miles traveled at 1994 levels; reduce SOV mode share to 25%

27 Designing Quality Transit Service in Boulder  Meet the needs of the customer dependably and efficiently  High frequency routes: 5-10 minute headways  Extended service hours  Community helps design routes  Simple routes - grid system and circular shuttles  Brightly painted, color coded buses  Branding - HOP, SKIP, JUMP instead of numbered routes  Supported by local pass programs

28 Partnership is key!  University (CU), city, and transit district (RTD) are key partners  CU, city and RTD share funding for high frequency transit routes, new transit superstops, real time information  City provides planning and marketing support  University provides demand base to justify higher frequencies

29 High frequency transit routes

30 Measurable Results: Student Travel at the University of Colorado  Vehicular Trips  1990 to 2000, 55% to 38%; respectively; 12% for trips to campus  Transit  2% to 12%  Biking  20% to 31%  Walking  23% to 19% (Source: “Modal Shift in the Boulder Valley”, National Research Center, 2001)

31 Comparative cost by mode

32 Growth in Vehicle Miles Traveled

33 Profile: UC Davis West Village Project UCD already has comprehensive TDM plan High cost and limited supply of housing leading to long commutes for students and faculty/staff Solution: visionary plan to develop new urbanist neighborhood adjacent to campus for faculty/staff/student housing - affordable housing close to campus - built around transit - direct bicycle connections to campus - residents not eligible for fulltime campus parking permits

34 University of California Sustainable Transportation Policy  "Incorporate alternative means of transportation to/from and within the campus to improve the quality of life on campus and in the surrounding community. The campuses will continue their strong commitment to provide affordable on-campus housing, in order to reduce the volume of commutes to and from campus. These housing goals are detailed in the campuses' Long Range Development Plans".

35 Achieving sustainable transportation goals  Align individual transportation costs to send the right price signals  Analysis of least cost mix of investments; and least GHG mix of investments  Provide student, faculty, and staff housing on or in close proximity to campus  Avoid expensive investments in parking; invest in sustainable transportation infrastructure and programs  Implement student transportation fee; add faculty/staff transit pass

36 Achieving goals continued  Consider incentive program for large scale switch to hybrids and plug in hybrids for individual and fleet vehicles Dedicated funding for bicycle infastructure and promotion Sustainable revenue stream for transportation

37 For more information:  For more details, check out this book!  It can be ordered at Contact Will Toor at: Phone: (303) Website:


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