The main goal of our project thus far has been to research the issues around and the potential remedies of the transportation system at Rutgers University. My personal role has been to reach out to my organization, the Rutgers University Programming Association (RUPA), to see how transportation may have positively or negatively affected our ability to host events for the student body. I have polled my fellow RUPA members, and the general consensus is that the over-crowded and slow busing system at Rutgers makes it difficult to host events on every campus. Most of the members feel that the busing system may deter students from exploring other campuses, and thus reaching diverse events, due to the headache of using the buses, especially on the weekends.
Obviously, this project is still in the early phases of its development, and it certainly needs more research to be done. The first area of research that needs to be focused on is the environmental concern of so many buses on the road. Would more buses, a viable option to fix the overcrowding, harm the environment to an unreasonable extent? Additionally, just how fuel efficient are the buses currently? Many buses sit at student centers for 10 minutes at a time; surely a practice of turning off the bus could save gas and the environment. More research needs to be done to put this part of the documentary into perspective. We should work on contacting professors or graduate students within the University who have done professional research about the environment and the potential harm from bus pollution.
Secondly, research about the safety of the buses needs to be further developed. Overcrowding is more than just a nuisance to students- the amount of people that pack onto buses during peak usage is far from safe. In the event of a bus crashing or breaking down, many students could be severely injured due, in part, to the amount of people on the bus. There is also the issue of crossing College Avenue and other busy New Brunswick streets. Students have be hurt before when crossing, whether they were hit by a car or a bus, and that needs to be addressed. Should we work on the students being educated, or perhaps look into crossing guards or police lookouts during rush hour? These safety issues definitely need more elaboration and research. Contacts could include Public Safety, local police officers, and personal accounts of students.
Finally, more research needs to be conducted on the population management issues. This is where some of my research comes into play. It seems that many students become wary of the transportation system after so many negative encounters that they give up using it almost altogether. Rutgers is a large school, and the fact of the matter is that the tens of thousands of students who attend it need a way to travel between campuses both for class and for leisure activities. Controlling the times of day that students need the bus could be remedied through class time changes, but spreading those out more could be a logistical nightmare. Again, students could be educated about leaving for classes early and learning alternate ways of getting to class (i.e. biking, walking, carpooling with commuters). In all, the population management issue needs some more research, and certainly some solid quotes from students, to be fully complete.