Friday, April 10, 2009

A & M Bike Racks Action

To anyone interested in making A&M a cleaner, greener, healthier place to work and study - please contact Dr. Beverly Edmond and voice your support for bike racks on campus. Bike racks could encourage students, faculty, and staff to commute to campus by bicycle. Maybe you're not ready to bike to campus or it's too far for you to do so; well, you may still want bike racks so that you can bring your bike to campus and use it to get around while on campus(instead of driving to human resources which is now by the wellness center construction site for example). Maybe you'd like to encourage others by voicing your support, or maybe you're just sick of seeing my bike in the hallway. Something physical and visible like a bike rack could plant the seeds of change in someone's mind about how they get around (seriously).

The e-mail I sent to Dr. Edmond is below and she forwarded it along to some folks in Facilities and Transportation. She also informed me she has received similar requests lately, so maybe now is the time to act.

Please consider emailing Dr. Edmonds and kindly encourage her on this matter. She has been very receptive to our requests.


Bello Velo said...

Dear Dr. Edmond,

I recently inquired about taking classes and volunteering at A & M. I called first to find out where the bike racks were for parking and locking my bicycle. This is my mode of transportation and I choose to not drive a car. To my absolute astonishment I was told that there were no bike racks and I could chain it to a pole. I assume if I had a car I would have a 8 x 8 parking space and not be told to chain my car to a pole. It would also seem that such a progressive vocational and liberal arts college would not put a barrier up for any student to get to class. I can not fathom how a college with 6000 students can not accommodate those who choose a cleaner healthier means of getting back and forth to school.

Considering Alabama's obesity epidemic, I would think that A & M would be leading the way not putting up obstacles for their students.

I also have checked and UAH and all the High Schools and Elementary schools in Huntsville have bike racks for their students.

I thank you for your time and look forward to your reply.

Dear ,
I agree that the university should accommodate all modes of transportation, especially those which are more energy efficient. I am not sure who you talked with but I will refer your question to our VP for Student Affairs and to our Transportation Office. I am sure there is an easy solution to this dilemma. Please understand that there are many things we need to address to improve the operation and efficiency of the university. We are making progress but much work remains to be done and all changes will not occur overnight.

Thank you for your interest in AAMU and for bringing this to my attention.

Beverly C. Edmond, Ph.D.
Interim President
Alabama A&M University
P.O. Box 1357
Normal, AL 35762
(256) 372-5230 office
(256) 372-5244 fax
Dear Dr. Edmond,

I am not sure who at A&M I should contact to address the needs of myself and other staff who would like to bike to work. This is primarily an issue of transportation and accomodating multiple modes of transportation, but is also an issue of a healthier, 'greener' campus culture. I am a Program Assistant here at A&M with the Center for Forestry, Ecology, and Wildlife at the Agricultural Resource Center and I enjoy my work at the University very much. Riding a bicycle is my mode of transportation and I choose to not drive a car. To my surprise I have found that there are no bike racks currently and instead I have to lock my bike to a pole, if I can find one. I know that if I had a car I would be able to get a parking pass to use the staff parking lots and not be forced to chain my car to a fence post.

I am aware of the problem of parking and car congestion at A&M and applaud the Office of Transportation for its implementation of a free Bus Service to ease that congestion somewhat; however, might not the placement of bike racks throughout the campus also ease car congestion? The presence of bike racks on campus could encourage students and staff to leave their cars off campus, or at the very least keep them from driving around campus once there. Indeed, Mississippi State University (among others) has had success with the popularity of a program providing bicycles for students to use on campus and the necessary racks for students to store them.

It would seem that such a progressive institution as A&M would not hinder any staff member or student to do their job or to attend class. On a bustling campus of nearly 6000 students and so many faculty and staff, how and why does the university not accommodate those who would choose a cleaner, healthier mode of commuting to work and school?

I thank you in advance for your time and look forward to
your reply.
Avian Research Technician
Center for Forestry, Ecology, and Wildlife
Dept. of Natural Resources and Environmental Science
Alabama A&M University
Normal, AL 35762
P.O. Box 1927

the milkman said...

She is friendly and seems to genuinely want to help. So, we should be persistent, but BE FRIENDLY. Dadaist experimentation might very well be replaced with pragmatism at this point.

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