Sustainable Transport at the University of Dundee: EVs, Budi Schemes, and a Bike Hire and Repair Hub

11th June 2015

The University of Dundee is fast earning itself a name for sustainable transport, operating what we believe is the largest electric vehicle (EV) fleet within the Scottish Higher Education sector.

Following their most recent delivery, which was supported by £70,000 in funding from Transport Scotland, the University’s fleet includes seven all-electric vans, one electric car, and one hybrid flatbed truck. In addition to fast chargers, they have also invested in a rapid charger, giving an 80% charge in 20 minutes. Dundee University expect the equivalent of 9 tonnes of carbon, and £10,000, will be saved every year through reduced fuel and maintenance costs, and the all-electric vehicles also have zero emissions and help reduce air pollution.

The University has also acquired 12 electric bikes, funded by a grant from TACTRAN, which are intended to promote green transport amongst staff and students. These, along with more traditional bicycles, can be accessed through Drive, the campus cycle hire and repair social enterprise company run by students and graduates. Staff can also make use of their well-established bike pool, which has been running for over 6 years, where staff can borrow a bike free of charge. The bike pool has 2 electric bikes, 2 hybrid bikes and 2 folding bikes.

Trudy Cunningham, Environment & Sustainability Officer at the University, said, “Ultimately we want to be a zero-emission university and these vehicles are another step in that direction. Not only do we want our transport choices to be as green as possible, we want to help staff and students to make those choices as well. In addition to being able to hire electric bikes, our liftshare is the biggest and best-used in the Scottish higher education sector”.

The University of Dundee has a number of other ongoing low-carbon travel projects, including Scotland’s first inner-tube vending machine, a 24/7 bike repair hub and stirrup pump, and membership of Liftshare’s BikeBUDi and TaxiBUDi schemes to lower carbon, improve safety, and reduce anxiety around commuting or getting home late at night on your own. Find more information on their Liftshare scheme here.

However Dundee isn’t the only Scottish institution investing in EVs. Our recent Travel and Transport Topic Support Network featured a talk by Ross Milligan on Edinburgh College’s 10 car EV fleet used by the estates team and those teaching core skills to travel between the College’s four campuses (find his presentation and the minutes here). At our recent Edinburgh Regional Group meeting we also heard more about the Edinburgh Further and Higher Education Transport Group of six Edinburgh institutions, including Edinburgh College, who invested in 28 eCycles between them, supported by a SEStran grant (find the University of Edinburgh’s news article here).

Join our Scottish Travel and Transport Topic Support Network to hear more about the work the University of Dundee and other FHE institutions are doing to promote sustainable travel. If Scotland is too far for you, then EAUC Members can register for the Transport Planning Network Community of Practice. You can also find detailed Travel and Transport Resources on our Sustainability Exchange.

We are always keen to hear about what our members and partners are doing to increase sustainability in operations or teaching. If your institution has a story to tell please do let us know – and you might want to consider applying for a Green Gown Award!
Electric Campus Vehicles at the University of Dundee Electric Campus Vehicle at the University of Dundee Electric Cars for Teaching and Estates Staff at Edinburgh College