Find a carpool buddy, save money

October 05, 2010Duke staff, faculty and students have an easier way of finding a carpool to campus or sharing a ride to a special event.

The university recently upgraded the user interface for Duke GreenRide, the online ride-matching tool that links Duke commuters who live and work near each other. New features include the ability to set up multiple commuting events as well as one-time commutes to share a drive for special events or long rides.

More than 1,200 Duke community members are signed up through the GreenRide website, which is part of Duke’s effort to reduce single-occupancy vehicles on campus by more than 1,000 by 2012 .

“We’re hoping for more utilization, especially among employees,” said Brian Williams, transportation demand manager coordinator with Duke Parking and Transportation Services. “Many people believe they have a schedule that no one else has, but there are more than 30,000 employees at Duke, and there’s a good chance that somebody lives near you, has a similar schedule and can carpool with you.”

The new GreenRide portal has a message center similar to e-mail, where users can manage their online communication with other carpoolers. John Todaro, IT project manager for Ecology and Environment, Inc., which runs GreenRide, said the new message center makes using the site easier.

GreenRide users can now view their commuting plans in a calendar format as well as a list. Users can also use a calculator on the site to find out how much money they can save annually by sharing the daily commute. Savings include gas, car maintenance and lowered parking costs at Duke.

By riding in a carpool, participants receive 24 free daily parking passes to use when they need to drive alone. Triangle Transit also offers emergency rides in case a student or employee who are registered for the emergency service  and need to leave campus before other carpoolers can.

Visit the Duke GreenRide website to sign up or see the new design.