University of Limerick has won three awards at the National Transport Authority Smarter Travel Awards 2017.
Partners of the Smarter Travel Workplaces and Smarter Travel Campus programme from around the country submitted entries to the competition which recognises and celebrates the efforts that workplaces and campuses make to promote sustainable travel.
The awards were presented in 14 categories including various modes of transport, best working group, curriculum development, best student project, among others.
UL was the most decorated of Ireland's third-level institutions at the ceremony, taking home awards for Walking Campus of the Year and Cycling Campus of the Year. UL Buildings and Estates Travel and Transport Coordinators, Seán Collins and Ross Higgins were awarded Best Working Group/ Coordinators of the Year.
According to Ross Higgins, UL Travel and Transport Coordinator, “We are absolutely delighted to have won a number of prizes at this year’s awards and while it’s great to get such recognition for work done, we are committed to working even harder with a range of measures to open people’s eyes to alternative to driving”.
Two other UL groups made the finals in their respective categories. Louise Kiernan and Niall Deloughry, lecturers in product design, were recognised in the curriculum development section for their outstanding work achieved integrating Smarter Travel into their annual design studio module. Separately, UL students Jenny Joyce, Reina Leyva, Stephen Johnson, Rafal Zakrzewski were finalists in the Best Student Project category for their work in developing a UL 3D Printed Wayfinding Model.
UL Travel and Transport Coordinator, Seán Collins, said, “These commendations are a wonderful acknowledgement of our efforts toward developing a leading sustainable campus and a better quality of life for all of our staff and students”.
Speaking at the awards, Anne Graham, Chief Executive Officer at the National Transport Authority commented, “A growing network of organisations in Ireland are engaging in Smarter Travel, working with their staff and students to facilitate travel choice in favour of more sustainable transport, resulting in reduced costs, enhanced employee wellbeing, better access and more effective parking management. Internationally workplace travel plans have been shown to reduce single-occupant car use by 10-24% The promotion and facilitation of cycling in particular, both on campuses and in workplaces made for strong competition, which highlights the growing interest in cycling across Ireland. The awards are well placed to act as inspiration and leadership as we recognise organisations that are paving the way for more sustainable travel options”.