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Results announced for 2008 Campus Commuter Challenge

November 25, 2008

Rachel May
(315) 443-9726

Rachel May

The second Syracuse University/SUNY-ESF Campus Commuter Challenge was held in October and was successful in raising awareness about alternatives to commuting alone to campus by car. Participants reported making more than 1,600 round trips from their homes to campus by bicycle, on foot, in carpools and by bus. By leaving the car at home for these trips, they made a gift to our whole community in the form of reduced air pollution, reduced emissions of carbon dioxide that causes global warming, less traffic and less demand for parking.

Eight people reported making the commute without a car every work day during the month of October. One student and one employee were chosen at random from those names to receive the two grand prizes-gift certificates for $150 to the SU Bookstore. They are Jennifer Bevilacqua Kirkegaard, an employee in the SU Office of Student Life, and Justin Breese, a graduate student in the School of Information Studies. Kirkegaard carpooled the 14 miles from her home to campus all month, and Breese biked one mile to campus all month. Runners-up for the staff grand prize were Michael DiSalvo of the SU Library and Martin Dovciak, a professor of biology at SUNY-ESF. Student runners-up were C.J. Lin of the Newhouse School, Tyler Kreider of SUNY-ESF, Prateek Jain of the Graduate School and Linda Tan of the Maxwell School.

Special Recognition prizes also went to the student and employee who saved the most CO2 with their commutes. Mary Beth Smyth, an employee in the SU Bursar's Office, rode the bus from her home 19 miles away 20 times during the month of October, saving more than 30 gallons of gasoline and about 590 pounds of CO2 (compared to driving her car the same distance at 25 miles per hour). William Aue, a student in The College of Arts and Sciences, made the bus trip 16 times from his home 15 miles away, saving an estimated 22 gallons of gasoline and 421 pounds of CO2 (compared to driving a car with typical U.S. fuel efficiency of 22.1 miles per hour).

Sixteen other participants also received weekly prizes during the month of October. Prizes were donated by CENTRO, the SU Bookstore, Salon 120, Green Homes Inc., Sugar Pearl Espresso Bar and Cafe and Eureka Crafts. Additional prizes were provided by the University Sustainability Action Coalition (USAC), which organized the Challenge.

Of the 264 participants, more than half are parking permit holders and well over a third would normally have driven their cars to campus. USAC salutes all who changed their commuting behavior in the month of October, as well as the many other participants who have made the choice to live close to campus and walk, bike, or ride the bus as a matter of course.

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