April is Active Transportation Month

Spring is coming, and it is prime time to get outside and try a more active commute. What better way to start than by Metro bus, bicycle, or your own two feet?

Every April and October, the Office of Sustainability and the Parking & Transportation Department host Active Transportation Month (ATM). The goal of ATM is to motivate students, faculty, and staff to kick the car habit and try active, low-carbon means of transportation. As Jennifer Carter, Sustainability Coordinator, explains, “You can start by changing your commute just one day a week—look up which buses run in your area, or bike on the day that is most convenient. And remember, active transportation isn’t just about commuting—it’s a great way to get out into the St. Louis community as the weather gets better!“

The next ATM kicks-off at Danforth University Center’s Edison Courtyard Friday, April 1, at 11a, and continues with free bicycle tune-ups by Big Shark Bicycle Company on the Danforth and WUSM campuses and group bike rides to Forest Park and Tower Grove Park. Office of Sustainability staff and students will be on-site at events to provide information on all of WashU’s alternative transportation options, from biking and public transit to carpooling and off-site parking.

A pivotal component of ATM is the Active Transportation Challenge, which offers the WashU community the chance to form teams and track their commutes in terms of miles logged, calories-burned, and CO2-saved. Last year, 81 teams logged 931 car-free trips, and we hope that even more will participate this year! Are you nervous about getting started? As Jessica Cissell, member of the BiblioRiders, suggests, “Find a friend who can help hold you accountable and provide suggestions for making your commute work for you!”

Active Transportation Challenge teams will earn points for commute totals, attendance at events, and participation in a photo contest. All participants will receive a free t-shirt and an invitation to our awards ceremony lunch. Teams will also be eligible for trophies and other prizes based on points earned.

For a full list of ATM activities, click here. To sign up for the Active Transportation Challenge, please visit bit.ly/activetransportation2016. If you don’t have a team, the Office of Sustainability will help you start or join one!

Do you have questions about ATM or alternative transportation? Please contact Seth Blum, Alternative Transportation Associate, at seth.blum@wustl.edu.