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Eight Million Strong
UMD and Duluth Transit Authority celebrate 8 Millionth UPass rider.
UMD and the Duluth Transit Authority are celebrating the 8 millionth U Pass rider on Wednesday, February 26 at 11 a.m. in the Kirby Bus Hub, 1120 Kirby Drive.
Chancellor Lendley (Lynn) Black and Duluth Transit Authority General Manager Phil Pumphrey are speaking about the milestone and the success of the UPass program, while the 8 millionth rider is awarded with a gift package of UMD-related merchandise and gift cards.
About the Partnership
UMD and the DTA initiated their UPass partnership in 2000. The UPass lets full time students ride the bus to campus and around the Twin Ports for $16 per semester. The pass is funded through a transportation sustainability fee, Transportation & Parking Services, and UMD’s Coca Cola agreement revenue.
In nearly 20 years, the program has grown to include nearly 6,500 unique UMD riders who are riding about 375,000 times per year.
Sustainability for the Win
Patrick Keenan, director of Student Life Operations, says the DTA partnership not only alleviates tight parking on campus, it also encourages sustainable transportation. “Transportation accounts for almost 8% of campus emissions, so encouraging alternative transportation is part of UMD’s plan to reduce its carbon footprint.”
Keenan adds there are many other environmental benefits of UPass– including the use of electric, hybrid, and bio-diesel buses, and the use of bike racks on the front of buses.