NUIG’s contribution to Galway’s Bike Week Festival was a huge success with many opting to cycle to work as part of the university’s Cycle to Campus Day. Galway's Bike Week Festival runs from June 18 to 26 and this year the week was launched in Galway with a mass cycle, a bike village and many other events around the city. As part of NUI Galway's contribution to the festival, the green campus committee organised a university-wide Cycle to Campus Day yesterday.
The Cycle to Campus Day aimed to encourage staff and students to cycle to campus and to reward those who do so regularly. All members of the NUI Galway community were welcome to participate - whether dedicated commuters or first-time cyclists.
"The Cycle to Campus event is another sign of the growing popularity of bicycling in NUI Galway", said Pierre Ludwick of the Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI ). Over half of all researchers in DERI regularly cycle to work, and Kevin O'Sullivan, a design engineer with the Buildings Office at the university, is working on a project to install additional secure and covered bike parking, to the direct benefit of this group.
The university is boosting bicycling even further with a number of improvements, including the development of a travel plan and the provision of new bike parking spaces. Additional covered bicycle racks have been installed in several places around campus, as part of ongoing improvements to cycle facilities. "We look forward to making it even easier and safer to ride a bike to work for all employees", says Greg Power, planning and projects officer at NUI Galway. "Cycling has many benefits for staff and students - we now need to keep the momentum and culture change with more and better incentives to cycling."
The cycle to work scheme has also been hugely popular on campus, and is open to all employees, with over 300 staff availing of the scheme since 2009. This scheme encourages more people to cycle to and from work, by gaining a tax saving on procuring a bicycle where it is used by the employee mainly for qualifying journeys.