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One way to encourage bicycle use on campus is to make it easy for riders to meet up. At Westminster College, mechanics are on hand to assist with repairs and maintenance in a do-it-yourself bike shop, part of a student-run bicycle collective.

In the last few years, new parking technology has allowed colleges and universities to upgrade systems and infrastructure. Yet higher ed officials are still mapping out the connections between parking operations, campus fleets and overall sustainability.

The Duke University Research Drive Garage earned LEED-certification from the U.S. Green Building Council in 2010.

Educational institutions lead the way in sustainable development and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, says Paul Wessel, executive director of the Green Parking Council.

And even though the U.S. Green Building Council stopped LEED-certifying parking structures in 2011, the Green Parking Council is out to prove that garages can still be environmentally friendly.

Since pesky parking to-do’s such as getting a permit or paying a ticket can be done online, there’s no need to find a spot near one of the parking offices at Northern Virginia Community College.

Dan Hofmann has been working for years to make parking about more than just painted lines, structures, and tickets. From city government positions to parking operations management at Harvard University to his current role as director of parking and transportation services at Clemson University (S.C.), he has been a champion for parking efficiencies. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say he makes parking cool.

Clark Kerr, one-time president of the University of California system, once characterized the university as “a series of individual faculty entrepreneurs held together by a common grievance over parking.” It’s a lighthearted definition, but one rooted in truth.


Officials at Purchase College, State University of New York, as elsewhere, have sought innovative ways to keep tuition low and cut costs. One such effort is Purchase Park2Fly (PP2F), now in existence for a year. The program allows passengers at neighboring Westchester County Airport to park on the campus’ vacant parking lot, at a cheaper rate than they could get on airport grounds and with a shuttle that picks up and drops off passengers to the airport.

It's common to find students filing papers in campus offices, restocking library shelves, or checking IDs at the fitness center to make a buck. What's a little less common is students replacing sidewalks and entranceways to dorms, building fountains, and constructing additions.

Colleges and universities are competing to build the most green, sustainably designed facilities. But some projects, by nature alone, have end uses, or are constructed with materials, that make it nearly impossible to secure U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) LEED certification. Single-use, standalone parking structures are one such genre of building, and parking design consultants have struggled for years to crack this green building code.

Rich in natural light, the building aims to help students be inspired by the school's mission, encouraging them to remember the need for accountability and transparency in international service.