Sustainable Transportation at Georgetown
Georgetown recognizes the multiple benefits associated with more sustainable transportation. We make the campus accessible for faculty, staff, students and visitors through many convenient transportation options, and offer an online transportation portal at transportation.georgetown.edu (new window) to help the campus community make convenient and sustainable choices.
Benefits of Sustainable Transportation
Dependence on automobiles can lead to negative effects such as air pollution, increased greenhouse gas emissions, roadway congestion and high infrastructure costs. Alternatives like those described below can help reduce these environmental impacts, and also promote other personal benefits like physical wellness through increased daily activity (such as walking and biking), and reduced financial costs associated with owning, parking and maintaining a private automobile.
Sustainability and GU’s Campus Fleet
Georgetown’s campus fleet integrates alternative-fuel vehicles:
- Biodiesel – A biodiesel blend – B20 when available – is used in all diesel-burning vehicles in the campus fleet, including the University-run (GUTS) shuttle buses and the campus-operated waste collection trucks.
- Electric utility vehicles – The University’s fleet of golf carts for local travel around campus contains 40 electric vehicles.
- Electric Plug-in Passenger Cars – Georgetown participated in a research initiative with the Toyota Motor Company to test-drive prototype electric plug-in Priuses during 2010 and 2011. Read more at our Electric Vehicle Research Initiative page.
- Bicycle Patrol – GUPD officers use bicycles to quickly traverse the campus as they promote safety and security.
In many senses, sustainable transportation comes naturally to Georgetown. As an urban campus with constrained access to land, the University strives to minimize surface parking and use our limited land resources for other purposes that serve our mission, and in recent years a number of surface parking lots have been converted to higher-use buildings and facilities. That goal dovetails well with our sustainability efforts, in that we make it a priority to provide our students, faculty, staff and visitors with convenient alternatives to single-occupancy vehicle use.
As of 2014, nearly two-thirds of our campus commuters arrive to work and class by means other than driving alone, and by policy (new window), undergraduate students do not have cars at Georgetown.
The university provides a number of convenient options (new window) for sustainable and alternative transportation to and from campus, including our free university shuttle, public transportation, bicycling, carsharing, and other means.
As part of its ongoing master planning process, Georgetown is planning for transportation investments that will improve access to and around campus and make the Main Campus more pedestrian and bicycle friendly. The university has adopted core planning principles of creating a pedestrian-friendly campus and improving transportation modes and means into campus.
Through ongoing Transportation Demand Management (TDM) planning, the university is developing strategies to reduce traffic congestion, parking demand and vehicle miles traveled, with benefits to air quality, human health and sustainability. Additionally, GU has been a stakeholder in the Georgetown Business Improvement District’s (BID) 15-year strategic planning process, which included an emphasis on the future of transportation. Through this effort, GU has voiced support for exploring a number of alternative transportation solutions such as a streetcar, an additional metro stop and increased bicycle connections with local trail systems.
Read more about these efforts here.
In 2013, GU was recognized by the League of American Bicyclists as the first Bicycle-Friendly University (new window) in the District of Columbia, in recognition of initiatives such as free showers offered for bicycle commuters on campus, installation of bicycle repair stands on campus, regular safe-cycling classes offered on campus, and plans to increase secure, covered bicycle storage in future construction.
Visit the Office of Sustainability’s bicycling portal and view additional information for students, faculty, staff and visitors.
Getting To and From Campus:
Information for Students, Faculty, Staff and Visitors
Visit transportation.geogetown.edu (new window) to learn more!