Stanford runs one of the most comprehensive programs in the country to reduce university-related traffic impacts—it’s an essential part of our drive for sustainability.
Transportation, including commuters and university fleet vehicles accounts for 11 percent of Stanford’s greenhouse gas emissions. Increasing the use of alternative transportation reduces those emissions and makes our community a better place to live and work: fewer cars translates to better air quality, less traffic congestion and noise, reduced pressure on undeveloped land and improved health for commuting students and employees.
Goals & Results
Our goal is to make sure people and goods can travel to, from and within the campus in an environmentally sustainable way. We seek to dramatically reduce transportation-related pollution, effects on local habitats and ecological resources, consumption of fossil fuel and traffic-related environmental effects identified by the local community.
One key measure of our efforts: We’re striving to hold commute trips to the 2001 baseline (3,474 morning trips and 3,591evening trips), even when the campus population grows. That means cutting the number of peak-hour trips and single-occupant vehicles, and boosting alternative transportation use throughout the Stanford community.
Results so far:
- From 2002 to 2010, the portion of employees driving alone to campus dropped from 72 to 48 percent.
- Marguerite shuttle bus ridership has climbed steadily. Passenger numbers rose from 1,084,363 to 1,416,508 in 2009—a 31 percent increase. The number of people getting on and off shuttles serving Caltrain commuter rail stations increased 30 percent.
- In 2010, 52 percent of university employees regularly used alternative transportation as their primary commute mode, compared with an estimated 22 percent within Santa Clara County. Among university employees, 25 percent regularly used public transportation, compared with only 3 percent county-wide.
- Membership in the Commute Club, for eligible employees and students who commit to not driving alone, has risen 121 percent since 2001–02, and the sales of long-term faculty, staff, and student parking permits have decreased 17 percent since 2004.
- Nearly one-third of Stanford’s 1,049 fleet vehicles are electric, and the number of hybrid vehicles is increasing each year. The fleet also includes one experimental solar vehicle. Stanford's Marguerite shuttle fleet is comprised of 2 diesel-electric hybrid buses and 39 biodiesel buses.