UNH’s commitment to sustainable transportation is part of its Climate Education Initiative. Under a framework of Transportation Demand Management (TDM), which seeks to reduce our use of single occupancy vehicle private vehicles, UNH takes a holistic approach that includes expanded free transit services, increased on-campus housing, development of improved transit and bicycle/pedestrian infrastructure, support of the Amtrak Downeaster, partnerships with ZipCar, and ongoing educational and information programs aimed at providing expanded mobility without private vehicle use. Our goal is maximizing mobility and accessibility in a climate protection framework that emphasizes health and safety, efficiency, cost effectiveness, equity, accessibility, and sustainability. UNH actively works with the state Department of Transportation and regional MPO to coordinate transit and intermodal transportation activities, and is a critical player in the regional transit system connecting eight communities to Durham by transit and providing over 1.2 million passenger trips per year.
- Main Street-East-West (completed September 2007-14): $3 million reconstruction of core campus street from downtown to NH 155 A providing dedicated bike lanes to enhance bicycle capacity and safety; improve travel way configuration; improve transit, including bus pullouts and lit shelters; expand sidewalks; and improve crosswalk lighting. Complete recreational trail to West Edge and the Lodges.
- Intermodal Rail Station Restoration and Expansion (completion July 2008): $1 million restoration of our on-campus historic train station and expansion of intermodal faculties to include full intercity bus capacity, indoor rail/bus transit passenger waiting areas, a renovated UNH Dairy Bar restaurant, and historic transportation displays highlighting the role of transportation in the founding of UNH-Durham. The Amtrak station in Durham (which is UNH-funded) served over 55,000 rail travelers in the ’14-‘15 academic year. In 2015 UNH will complete design options for final buildout and platorm expansion. Learn more...
- UNH CNG Fueling Infrastructure and Fleet (completed 2014): Expansion of our existing compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling facility and continued procurement of CNG and low emission biodiesel transit and non-transit vehicle fleet.
- College Road Bike Lanes (completed 2013): Reconstruction of College Road from Main St. to Service Road with inclusion of bike lanes, bus pullouts and expanded sidewalks.
- Rochester Route 125 Wildcat Transit (began 2013): weekday commuter based service connecting Durham to Lee, Barrington and Rochester - funding via CMAQ program
- Expanded Wildcat Route 4 service to Newington/Portsmouth (began 2012): Increased weekday commute hour frequency on Wildcat Routes 4a/4b – funding via NHDOT – Little Bay Bridges mitigation
- Real Time Transit Information: Introduction of NextBus™: Real-time transit information services for all UNH Wildcat and Campus Connector routes – funding via CMAQ
- ArtBike and Covered bike rack projects: In 2014-2015 UNH, in conjuction with the College of Liberal Arts, completed installation of six student designed sculptural racks on core campus. Thanks to an FTA grant, UNH also installed its irst covered bike racks outside the Morse and Academic Way corridor.
- UNH is actively pursuing federal funding and collaborative partnerships to complete several key transportation infrastructure initiatives:
- Expanded CNG storage/Fuel Station Backup Power
- Additional Wildcat Transit Fleet Vehicles
- South Drive Transitway
- Main Street downtown roundabout (@ Quad/Pettee Brook)
The UNH Transportation Policy Committee (TPC) serves in an advisory capacity to the UNH President, making recommendations on the full range of issues that relate to transportation management at UNH, including parking policy and transit services. Chaired by the UNH Vice President of Finance & Administration and comprised of members from across the entire campus, the overarching goal of the TPC is to guide the university toward a systemic transportation system that is consistent with priorities set by the UNH Academic Plan and the UNH Campus Master Plan and that maximizes mobility and accessibility in a climate education framework that emphasizes health and safety, efficiency, cost effectiveness, equity, and sustainability.
UNH collects data on its transportation systems (transit, vehicle fuel consumption, mileage) and community transportation needs and behaviors as a way of benchmarking and tracking progress in its sustainable transportation system goals. This data collection is permitting UNH to measure effectiveness versus peer institutions. Reports and publications can be found on the Transportation Policiy Committee website.
UNH boasts the state’s largest public transit system – Wildcat Transit and highlights include the following:
- Campus Connector: UNH's free, on-campus shuttle system that is open to all in UNH Durham community and runs primarily on compressed natural gas (CNG).
- Wildcat Transit: UNH's off-campus transit system that is free to UNH ID holders and $1.50 for general public access. Handicap accessible with bike racks for use on all buses, Wildcat Transit connects the UNH community with the Campus Connector shuttle system, with local, state, and region-wide commercial bus service, and with the Dover and Durham Amtrak Downeaster train stations. Wildcat Transit also offers a guaranteed ride home program for transit riders during the academic year. UNH continues to grow its transit offerings, especially into the densest travel routes and off-campus housing areas used by UNH faculty, staff, and students
Cool UNH Transit Facts:
- In 2008, UNH WildCat Transit won the Federal Transit Administration "Success in Enhancing Ridership Award" in the 50,000 to 200,000 population category. Wildcat Transit was recognized for its efforts in getting at least 5% more passengers per year over a two-year period; UNH has used better traveler information, nicer bus shelters (with solar power lighting), a website with regularly updated transit and parking information, and new biodiesel transit buses to increase ridership by 21 percent.
- Wildcat Transit ridership has increased at an average 8%/year rate since 2000 and doubling since 1999. - and in FY 14-15 provided over 1.2 million trips representing over 5 million private vehicle passenger miles removed from the roads and reducing emissions by an estimated.
- UNH has been shifting its fleet – especially transit – to use of compressed natural gas (CNG). In FY 14, CNG powered over 50% of all Wildcat Transit miles. That is expected to grow to 80% within the next few years.
UNH Transit connects eight communities to Durham….
- Look up UNH Wildcat Transit routes and services
- Look up schedule and ticket information for the Amtrak Downeaster
- Learn about COAST bus routes around the Seacoast (Students, Faculty, and Staff can ride for free with a UNH ID)
UNH transitioned the majority its diesel fleet to the use of low sulfur B20 biodiesel beginning in fall 2006. All of UNH’s new transit vehicle purchases since 2008 have been CARB certified B20 diesel or CNG low-floor buses with bike racks.
- Learn more about UNH's carpool lot and program
- UNH offers ZipCar memberships for students, employees and departments
UNH works closely with the Town of Durham and NHDOT to expand biking infrastructure in Durham. Recent improvements to Main Street, College Road and others have seen bike lanes and shared lanes. UNH has also been expanding the bike parking on campus with new standardized racks.
Bike routes to UNH
Below are maps of bike routes to get you to the UNH Durham Campus and avoid major roadways. These are tried and true routes by members of the Sustainability Institute as well as many other staff and faculty on campus who are also biking enthusiasts!
Amtrak Downeaster service in Durham began December 2001, offering a welcome relief to traffic congestion, high gasoline prices, parking woes, and air pollution caused by single occupancy vehicles. The Amtrak Downeaster offers five daily roundtrips serving the communities of Freeport, Brunswick Portland Old Orchard Beach, Saco/Biddeford, and Wells in Maine; Dover, Durham and Exeter in New Hampshire; and Haverhill,Woburn and Boston North Station in Massachusetts. The service regularly rates well for on-time service and customer satisfaction and has been growing yearly
In 2009, UNH unveiled a Eco-Cat™ labeling on all UNH alternative fuel and clean technology vehicles that will educate riders and local residents about the environmental and economic benefits of UNH's growing suite of such transit and non-transit vehicles.
If your office has, or needs, a department vehicle, UNH has developed a new EcoCat calculator, helping departments "right size" a vehicle for their needs. You can go to the site here for details and to download the calculator: http://www.unh.edu/facilities/ecocat-vehicle-selection-calculator