July 22, 2008
The University of Virginia Parking and Transportation Department launched CavPool Tuesday, and it is more than your typical "save money and the environment" speech. This program could save thousands of University employees hundreds of dollars a year.
There are more than 12,000 UVa. employees, and officials say only about a third of them live on UTS or CTS bus lines. This program is supposed to give the the thousands who cannot use public transit another option.
"We're really jusy trying to provide and encourage and support any kind of transportation options for people who may not be on that transit line," said Director of Parking and Transportation, Rebecca White.
University of Virginia Parking and Transportation officials say this program will make carpooling a more appealing option for employees.
"Everybody is rethinking their transportation options right now, because over the last couple of months gas prices have really taken a bite," said White.
By offering a package of incentives, including reduced or even free parking permits and possible free rides home when needed, officials hope UVa. employees will team up and help reduce traffic congestion and environmental concerns.
"The idea is that the more riders you have the further along into the incentive package you get," said White.
Carpools with two riders can get a 10% discount on parking permits, while pools of five or more get free parking. It might not sound like much, but considering permits run from $192 to $700 dollars per year, the savings could be substantial.
White adds that on top of the obvious economic benefit, the program should also help reduce the demand for parking spaces on grounds.
CavPool participants must be UVa. employees or foundation employees who work on grounds. The program is being put in effect during the final weeks of July.