Trinity has announced its decision to support the “Cycling Works Dublin” campaign, becoming the first large employer to back a campaign for improved cycling infrastructure in Dublin.
College stated that it decided to support the campaign when nearly 90% of students and staff said that they believe cycling in the city is dangerous in a recent Smarter Travel survey.
Included in the new “Cycling Works” campaign is a call for segregated cycling lanes, allowing students to commute more easily between different College campuses and accommodation centres. Additionally, it urges employers to demand increased investment in cycling infrastructure as well as lending their name to the campaign webpage and providing funding.
According to the survey, 14% of Trinity staff and students cycle to college more frequently than using any other mode of transport. This exceeds the average rate in other third level institutions of 6% and the average cycling rate in Dublin of 8%.
Speaking to the Sunday Times, Health Promotion Officer Martina Mullin said that College wants to increase the number of daily cyclists, after the survey also showed that cycling among both students and staff has dropped from 22% to 14% since 2011.
Founder of “Cycling Works Dublin” Stephen McManus emphasises that employers are specifically targeted as many chief executives are cyclists and thus more likely to lend their support to a campaign which emphasises health and wellbeing among staff. McManus drew attention to the fact that government plans for the development of a large cycling network in Dublin have stalled since 2013.
Under the current Healthy Trinity scheme, College’s Smarter Travel Initiative encourages students and staff to walk, cycle or take public transport when travelling to college. Smarter Travel is a partnership with the National Transport Authority and was launched by the provost in November 2011. The initiative aims to ensure the implementation of the College’s Sustainable Development Policy and includes measures such as a Bike Buddy scheme.