Report on Unisa Transportation Plan
The focus of this report is to develop a sustainable transportation management plan for the Mawson Lakes campus of University of South Australia (UniSA). Mawson Lake campus Located in Adelaide’s developing suburbs boasts modern learning, teaching and research facilities. The campus is almost 20 minutes from the center of Adelaide city on Mawson Lakes, giving its students and faculty an experience of wetland areas, green spaces, buzzing cafes and a lot of other leisure facilities (Andrew, 2001).
This report would be discussing how to preserve the natural beauty and fresh environment around the campus and to minimize greenhouse gas emission specifically the presence of Methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide in the environment that is emitted by vehicular traffic (Vivienne & Litt, 2006).
University campus settings are complex in nature incorporating transit, vehicular traffic and pedestrians into a single transportation system is a great challenge. By keeping in view that relying heavily on vehicles as a personal mode of transportation has very serious consequences for the health of the environment (Barbara, 2006). This sustainable transport management plan is aiming at fulfilling the social responsibility on one side and also to bring huge positive benefits for students, staff and local community members. There are many options that can be opted in order to reduce vehicular traffic and greenhouse gas emission.
Sustainable Transport system
How we travel around has a great effect on the environment. Cycling, walking and public transport options generally produce lesser greenhouse gas emissions than private cars or motorized travel. A good and sustainable transport plan is the one that priorities those modes of travelling that has zero or very limited environmental impacts. They are also good for our health and make a better use of land resources of the city (Williams, 2005). Sustainable transport choices allow us to meet our needs in a better way without compromising the selections of future generations.
Greenhouse Gas Intensity of Transport Modes
In the graph given below an amount of greenhouse gas emission by a vehicular transport is shown below (Malte, 2009). On y-axis kilometers travelled by an average person and the amount of gas produced is measured and on x-axis mode of transportation is shown.
Source: (Malte, 2009)
Sustainable Transport Strategy
The sustainable transport strategy designed in this report aims at meeting the needs of students, staff, visitors, residents and commuters, and minimizing the adverse impacts that private cars have on our community.
The choices we make about travelling around have a great impact on the environment. A sustainable transport plan is the one that priorities such modes which have less or no environmental impact (Angela, 2008).
To achieve this vision the plan is intended to make decisions based on hierarchical order that significances walking, cycling, public transport, electric motors above private cars.
Sustainable transport plan by ACT Government
The government of Australia under the department of planning, transport and infrastructure has also put in a lot of effort with an aim to increase the use of public transport by reducing the overall cost of transportation and maintaining the high levels of accessibility (Nicholas, Gleeson, & Rush, 2003). Bicycle, pedestrian, traffic calming, safety and streetscape improvements are primary roadway on each campus thus providing commuters with convenient alternatives to private cars and encouraging more use of cycling, walking and public transport. The department works with an integrated framework that includes
- Avoid any harm to global and local environment thus promoting transport system that is environmentally friendly.
- Environmental objectives to conserve the natural and fresh environment.
- Social equity objectives that allows all individuals to easily acess public transport
- Economic objectives to provide access to transport at reduced or cheap rates.
Getting to Mawson Lakes Campus
- By bike or foot
No doubt cycling or walking is the cheapest and best way to get to campus. It’s fun and friendly for the environment. By cycling or walking you not only escape from the hassles of parking cars and bearing noisy traffic it is also a superb form of a daily routine workout too ensuring improved health and fitness (David, 2000). By substituting car trips with cycling or walking you will be reducing an immense amount of carbon dioxide emission thus doing your contribution in preventing the green environment.
Walk or cycle instead it’s faster than you think
Car trips within just 5kms of range will take nearly 15 minutes by cycle or around 40 minutes on foot. Adelaide’s perfectly leveled roads and plentiful paths and lanes for bike make it a pleasant and enjoyable ridding. An approximate area of 189 hectares of Mawson Lakes is devoted to wide open space, open land and waterways. Spaces are full of playgrounds, gardens, parks and a twisty 26km network of hike and bike trails. This network is directly linked with the wider bike direct network that covers the majority of Adelaide Metropolitan area (David, 2000). For that reason Mawson Lakes Unisa provide its students and staff with bike parking permit on the university grounds.
Bike storage and showers
Commuters will only be preferring and considering cycling a more practical option if the university is providing them with facilities of changing, showering and safe storage of their personal items (Vivienne & Litt, 2006). Mawson Lakes campus has racks available for bikes all across the campus with the facility of private bike locking devices and it is very easy to find shower around to freshen up.
By bus or train
Mawson Lakes has well knitted transport links from the city and also from northern suburbs of Adelaide making it easily accessible for the bus and train to reach. Mawson interchange is only five minute walk from the campus and it is a major hub of local transport. It also offers a drop off area with easy access for vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians from Mawson Lakes Town Center, Elder Smith Road, UniSA and Technology Park. Students and staff can easily walk their way or can park their cars or bike to get a bus or tram. The interchange provides with the facility of park and ride, nearly 150 car park spaces (Vivienne & Litt, 2006).
The campus is also facilitating their students and staff with the campus connector. It is a bus service between Magill and Mawson Lakes. The services of the connector are available for free by keeping in view the motive of increasing the number of green commuters.
The Metro trains of Adelaide at the interchange connect directly with the Adelaide bus service that cover the center of Mawson Town and comes near the University of South Australia campus. So for the staff members and students of UniSA who are living at a far distant from their University it is more feasible to travel through Metro train.
The interchange also facilitates the local residents by providing them an access to express train to and from the city (Peter, 2009). Express train hardly takes 13 minutes between Central Business District and Mawson Lakes.
Electric Vehicles (EVs)
Another modern mode of transportation that is friendly to environment is electric cars bikes or scoters. Due to recent developments electric motors have become a more viable mode for everyday travel. As moving a car needs a lot of energy and taking it to long distances can significantly drain car’s batteries. However by keeping this issue in mind some automakers are constantly trying to overcome these limitations.
Although electric vehicles are relatively new in Australian market but as the sales prices are expected to decrease it is foreseen that these vehicles have a great potential to completely replace the combustion vehicles on the road (Karel, 2007). As some of these vehicles are charged with coal generated electricity they still generate less emission compared to conventional cars some of these provide charging facilities with green power that will let user to nearly eliminate operating emissions.
Role of Universities to encourage adoption of EVs
The UniSA needs to encourage its students and staff to adopt electric vehicles by introducing battery charging stations in the parking of campus, thus keeping its driver at ease and peace of mind. Another viable option could be giving discounts on the parking of EVs (Willett & Letendre, 1997).
Electric bikes and scoters
The ownership rates of electric bikes are relatively low in Australia. Thus these bikes have a huge potential to play an active role as a substitute to private cars for daily commutes.
Private electric mobility scooters are gaining prominence and are significantly important medium of travelling for people with mobility challenges. The advancement in technology has introduced new portable and lightweight models that are compact in design, offer storage spaces and can easily be folded so that it is easy to store them and can be transported in larger vehicles (Antonio & Guzzella, 2007).
Programs to Promote Sustainable Transportation Strategy
The Mawson Lakes campus of University of South Australia can promote its sustainable transportation strategy through different ways.
The UnisSA will require to market its strategy. By introducing promotions, programs and benefits for cycle commuting.
Organize different workshops or seminars on safe riding tips, maintenance of bike, correct posture to prevent any injury etc.
Social events should be organized on regular basis for instance a weekly breakfast with a theme to ride to work or study day.
- Funded Safety Gear
Make helmets, lights and locks available for students and staff on discounted rates to purchase.
- Go Green
Promoting the importance of green and fresh environment by introducing the benefits of morning exercises with cycling or walking and relishing the open spaced tracks of Mawson Lakes.
The focus of this report was to develop a sustainable transportation management plan for the Mawson Lakes campus of University of South Australia (UniSA) with an objective of meeting the needs of students, staff, visitors, residents and commuters, and minimizing the adverse impacts that private cars have on our community (David, Taylor, & Scrafton, 2011).
There are number of alternative available that can reduce the increased number of vehicular traffic on campus and therefore reducing the emission of carbon dioxide and other environmental concerns. The increased number of vehicles that travel across the University of South Austr alia and leaving its adverse impact on the environment could be because of various factors such as the geographical location of the campus, perception of motor vehicle use and lack of motivations to apply sustainable transportation programs (Williams, 2005).
In addition to current projects of the campus there are certain alternatives provided in this report to substitute the greater use of personal vehicles. To achieve these objectives the UniSA is expected to establish a committee of campus bicycle that oversee infrastructure demands, future campus programs and to provide necessary services (John, 2006).
It is seen that the choices we make about travelling around have a great impact on the environment. A sustainable transport plan is the one that priorities such modes which have less or no environmental impact (Angela, 2008). To achieve this vision the plan is designed in a way to make decisions based on hierarchical order that significances walking, cycling, public transport, electric motors than travelling through private cars.
As cycling or walking to campus are the cheapest and a fun activity to do daily. Commuters can be encouraged by providing them with facilities of changing, showering and safe storage of their personal items. Mawson Lakes campus has racks available for bikes all across the campus with the facility of private bike locking devices and it is very easy to find shower around to freshen up.
Other than cycling or walking there are two other options of public transport and electric vehicles are also discussed. And it is seen that Mawson Lakes campus has a great infrastructure that provides commuters an easy access to metro bus or train.
The uses of electric vehicles are not very common in Australia the possible reson could be high rates, but it is foreseen that with the advancement in technology the time will come when these electric vehicles will completely eradicate the emission of carbon dioxide generated by vehicular traffic therefore preserving the natural beauty and fresh environment around the campus.