News

Ride2Uni mapping results are in


28 November 2013

Cycling routes taken by staff and students in the Ride2Uni mapping project
Cycling routes taken by staff and students in the Ride2Uni mapping project

 

It was an idea that started in Yammer and grew to include more than 70 University staff and student cyclists, from regular riding enthusiasts to beginners who'd been inspired by National Ride2Work Day.

Participants in the Ride2Uni mapping project, including 55 staff and 17 students, mapped one ride to the University from 14 to 18 October 2013, using apps, GPS devices or mapping websites.

The final result (above) shows popular routes taken to get to campus, long solo courses and a scenic riverside ride. Routes ranged from 2.5km to as long as 40.7km, with an average ride distance of 12.2km. Find out top speeds and total distance travelled by participants in the mapping infographic (212KB PDF).

The project was run by Amber Colhoun from the Charles Perkins Centre, Miguel Yamin from International Services and David Scoppa from Human Resources. All three regularly ride to work on Camperdown Campus, with David and Amber cycling 11km from Bondi and Miguel making the 15km journey from Chatswood.

"We hope the mapping project will encourage more people to ride to the University and inspire regular riders to mix it up and try a new route," said Amber.

Choosing a healthy, fun and sustainable mode of transport such as cycling to get to campus is just one way staff and students can increase physical activity and decrease sedentary time, and ultimately help create a healthy learning and working environment, as encouraged by the Healthy Sydney University project.

A recent Healthy Sydney University-supported survey of more than 3000 University staff and students, however, showed that only six percent travel to the Camperdown Campus by bike.

"To be able to promote active travel it is important that we understand how people are currently travelling, and look for where the opportunities for change are. With 40 percent of Camperdown-based staff and students living within 5km of campus, it is very feasible for more people to ride their bicycles," said Professor Chris Rissel, a lead author of University of Sydney Physical Activity and Travel Behaviour Survey.

"We really need to be doing more to encourage higher levels of physical activity, and increasing active travel is an effective and sustainable strategy."

The Ride2Uni mapping project is one initiative that could help spark conversation and inspire alternative and sustainable ways to travel to the University.

"Miguel, David and I would like to thank everyone who supported the project, with a special mention to Richard Ellison from the Institute for Transport and Logistic Studies for helping with the mapping, and hope that everyone takes part in it again," said Amber. "We plan to do it two or three times a year and next time might add a coffee meet-up at the end."

Amber, Miguel and David met each other through the 'Bike2work' Yammer group, where they initiated the ride mapping idea.

To join the Yammer conversation, go to yammer.com/sydney.edu.au and sign up using your @sydney.edu.au email address. Once logged in, join some groups, follow your colleagues, meet new people, share ideas across departmental boundaries and learn more about who does what and how things happen at the University.

Please contact Amber Colhoun for more information on the Ride2Uni mapping project, or join the 'Bike2Work' group.