The University of South Carolina has won a silver Bicycle Friendly University Award from the League of American Bicyclists. The award recognizes successful efforts to create a bikeable campus using strategies that include design, education and planning.
UofSC is among only 33 institutions in the country and the only school in South Carolina to earn an award.
“The award is an indication of the steady work that we’re trying to do and our desire to constantly improve on it,” says Larry Cook, director of the Office of Sustainability. “Certification through the league helps us identify ways to continue those improvements.”
Bike-friendly features on the Columbia campus include bike lanes, bike racks, covered storage areas and the campus bike shop at the P.E. Center. Plans include adding more bike lanes, installing technology to help trigger green lights for bicyclists at major intersections and improving education and access programs to help provide low-cost ways for community members to get and learn to ride bicycles.
These and other bike-friendly efforts are coordinated by the Bicycle Advisory Committee, which includes students and staff from Campus Recreation, Facilities, the Office of Sustainability, Parking and Vehicle Management and University Health Services. The group also works with the City of Columbia to support the city’s designation as a bicycle-friendly community.
“Making campus safe and bike-friendly requires the work of all these partners ,“ Cook says. “It’s an effort that crosses all interest levels and designations across campus. We all want to create an environment where biking is really a viable way of moving around the area.”