By Jill Jennings Golich
The fall semester at the Auraria Campus, serving Community College of Denver, Metropolitan State University of Denver, and the University of Colorado Denver, started on August 20th with two exciting developments in furthering alternative transportation options for the 44,000 student campus located in downtown Denver. The first is the addition of a bike route on Curtis Street between Speer Boulevard and 5th Street, and the second is the addition of eGo CarShare.
Curtis Street was chosen to be the campus’ first bike route as it provides a connection to the Auraria West Light Rail Station (off 5th Street), the off-campus bike lanes on Lawrence and Arapahoe, as well as the Lawrence Street access to the Cherry Creek Trail. A dismount zone remains in effect for the heavy used pedestrian zones in the center of campus.
This bike lane was outlined in the recently adopted 2012 Auraria Higher Education Center Master Plan Update, and is the first phase of improving mobility for bicyclists on the Auraria Campus.
The Auraria Campus provides approximately 1,400 bike parking spaces throughout its 150 acres, and the addition of the bike lane will improve bicycle access to the commuter campus. A Biking on Campus guide containing a campus bike map, as well as rules and regulations can be found at www.ahec.edu/bikes. Bicyclists must yield to pedestrians and obey all posted signs, as well as dismount in the posted dismount zones.
eGo CarShare is a local nonprofit organization that provides access to a network of energy-efficient vehicles throughout Denver and Boulder, allowing members to pay per trip without the commitment of owning a car. Vehicles are conveniently stationed, often near transit and bicycle facilities and are accessible to members with valid reservations 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Auraria has partnered with eGo to provide space for one carshare vehicle which is stationed in the campus’ Holly Lot at 9th and Curtis Street, providing convenient access for those on campus. Its location is also adjacent to the Curtis bike route. eGo CarShare provides another option, besides driving to campus, when a vehicle is needed for an errand or appointment. For more information on eGo CarShare at the Auraria Campus, visit their website at http://carshare.org/auraria-higher-education-center.
It is hoped that both of these options will reduce the number of single occupancy vehicle trips to the Auraria Campus, and encourage students and staff to walk, bike or take RTD whenever possible.
Jill Jennings Golich is the campus planner for the Auraria Higher Education Center in Downtown Denver. Jill received a Master in Public Administration from the University of Washington in 2003 where she studied urban and community development, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from the University of Denver in 2000. She is a LEED Green Associate and active in the Downtown Denver Partnership’s Transportation and Development Council.