Current Students

New bike facility creating a hubbub

UTAS Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Rathjen and Minister for Sustainable Transport Nick McKim try out some electric bikes

It's now easier than ever for students and staff to travel by bike to the UTAS Sandy Bay campus with the opening of a new bike hub.

The hub was officially opened today by the UTAS Vice-Chancellor, Professor Peter Rathjen and Minister for Sustainable Transport Nick McKim.

The hub, which is next to the University Club, features shelter and storage for bikes, solar panels, electric bike recharging points and a bike maintenance station.

It was partly funded through a $10,000 grant from the State Government's Cycling for Active Transport - Local Infrastructure Development Fund. The Hobart City Council also contributed, cutting a curb on Alexander Street, making it easier for cyclists to ride into the hub.

UTAS Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Rathjen said the hub was an excellent initiative prompted by UTAS' 2012-16 Sustainable Transport Strategy.

"A number of our staff and students ride their bikes to the campus and we hope that with the opening of this new facility, even more members of the UTAS community will be encouraged to travel sustainably.

"The Bike Hub is just one of the initiatives UTAS is focused on under our Sustainable Transport Strategy; we will also be trialling electric cars in our vehicle fleet, starting an online carpooling system and improving our inter-regional bus services.

"We also have a very popular annual UTAS Energy Challenge, which sees different university schools and sections compete to save the most energy."

Prof Rathjen highlighted the key role of students from the Schools of Architecture and Design and Geography and Environmental Studies who were instrumental in the development of the bike hub by gathering campus travel data and designing the structure.

"This facility is a product of our students' dedication and passion for environmental sustainability. I extend my thanks to them and to the staff who have supported this project."

Prof Rathjen said it had been a spectacular month for sustainability at UTAS.

"Our new Medical Sciences 2 building has become the first educational building in Tasmania, and only the fifth building in the state, to achieve a five star Green Star rating for environmental design."

UTAS also recently won the Australasian Campuses Towards Sustainability Award of Excellence, which recognises continued efforts for improvement to the sustainability achievements of an institution. UTAS was also highly commended for the Continuous Improvement and generating Institutional Change Award.

Image: UTAS Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Rathjen and Minister for Sustainable Transport Nick McKim try out some electric bikes.

Published on: 10 Oct 2012 2:53pm