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UBC Reports | Vol. 46 | No. 18 | November 16, 2000

Everybody into the carpool

New program's flexibility aimed at faculty, staff and students' schedules

by Hilary Thomson staff writer

HOV envy -- the condition affecting lone drivers as they watch carpoolers zoom along in the high occupancy vehicle (HOV) lane -- may be a thing of the past for UBC students, faculty and staff thanks to a new UBC TREK program.

Called Commuter Connections, the new Web-based initiative aims to match up interested commuters with prospective carpool partners. It is especially designed for post-secondary institutions and for individuals who have irregular schedules.

"We hope this service fills a gap for people who want to carpool but don't know where to start," says Gord Lovegrove, director of the TREK Program Centre.

To use the free service, commuters seeking carpool partners log onto the Web site and provide their name and address along with campus arrival and departure times. Smoking and gender preferences and interest in driving for the pool are also included.

A confidential system, Commuter Connections uses this detailed personal data to create reports of possible carpool matches. The reports that are sent back to prospective poolers show limited personal information only.

Carpool members are encouraged to use e-mail to make their connections. After a few electronic exchanges the pool is ready to hit the road.

The Commuter Connections system can accommodate an unlimited number of participants; about 80 UBC commuters have joined the program since it was launched in September. There are more than 31,000 UBC commuters. About one-third currently use car or vanpools.

UBC's Commuter Connections is part of a North American non-profit program started in 1992 that promotes the development of ride-share programs. Sixteen Canadian post-secondary institutions participate.

The TREK Program Centre promotes sustainable transportation and is responsible for all UBC transportation planning issues. Its goal is to reduce single occupancy vehicle traffic to campus by promoting alternative means of commuting.

For more information on Commuter Connections, check the Web site at www.trek.ubc.ca/choices/carpool.html.


Last reviewed 22-Sep-2006

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