Over the previous weekend, certainly one of my associates, who commutes to class on daily basis from Lengthy Island, spent the whole day with me. We had been ready in entrance of Alumni Corridor for our different associates earlier than getting a midnight slice of Joe’s Pizza, when she acquired a name urging her to return house instantly. Since she’s an NYU scholar, she determined to make use of Secure Experience, a free rideshare service which permits college students to journey between college buildings.
She wanted to go to New York Penn Station, however the closest Secure Experience location for her to be dropped off at was Langone Medical Middle — too far east for a straightforward commute. She was left with two unsafe choices: take the subway or stroll a mile alone at evening.
NYU Secure Experience is a partnership between NYU and By way of Transportation, a transit know-how firm, that operates predominantly in Manhattan and Brooklyn. College students can request a journey between 11 p.m. and seven a.m. to and from any close by campus constructing. Whereas the service is nice for college students that keep predominantly on campus, it doesn’t assist NYU’s many commuter college students who won’t stay close to a college constructing. Nonetheless, with a couple of small adjustments, this system might be much more accessible for the whole scholar physique.
It’s not affordable to count on the NYU Secure Experience service to journey to each particular person commuter scholar’s house, particularly as this system is already struggling to supply well timed service on-campus. Nonetheless, the service might be expanded to incorporate transportation hubs just like the PATH stations on Christopher Avenue or thirty third Avenue, Port Authority Bus Terminal and Grand Central Terminal, as they’re important checkpoints for these residing within the tri-state space. These few key areas present entry to New Jersey, Brooklyn and Lengthy Island, areas that comprise a few of the preferred zip codes for NYU college students to stay, in keeping with a 2019 NYU transportation survey.
Increasing NYU Secure Experience to cowl these areas would offer a method for the college to handle the wants of hundreds of scholars with just a few further areas. Based on the transportation survey, the share of the NYU group residing in Manhattan decreased nearly 10% from 2009 to 2019. With growing lease costs close to the town and better residence corridor charges, it is sensible for extra college students to maneuver additional away. Because the variety of commuter college students will increase, the college wants to verify its transportation providers embrace them.
Secure transport isn’t only a matter of accessibility, however a security subject as nicely. Harassment on the New York Metropolis subway system might be a serious concern for commuter college students, particularly late at evening. Whereas the subway stays a lifeline for a lot of NYU college students — being the first mode of transportation for 41% of respondents — the darker, extra secluded and fewer crowded circumstances at later hours can go away college students in harmful conditions.
The issue of getting house at evening for commuter college students is worsened by the decrease frequency of trains and buses at later hours. In the course of the day, college students could possibly catch public transportation each couple of minutes, however at later occasions, these go down to each thirty minutes and even hourly. Nonetheless, not everybody can afford an Uber, Lyft or Taxi, and with the ability to catch a Secure Experience could be the proper answer.
Secure Experience can now drop college students off on the West Fourth Avenue and 14th Avenue and Union Sq. MTA stations, that means the infrastructure for extra expansions is already in place. Now, it simply must entry broader-reaching transportation hubs. Whereas increasing Secure Experience could lead to greater operational expenditures, these fees needs to be considered as investments within the security and well-being of NYU’s commuter college students.
“We [will] proceed to guage and make changes as a way to improve the general security of our group the place attainable,” Campus Security head Fountain Walker wrote in a press release to WSN. “Increasing service would require us to make sure that the present high quality and effectivity of the providing could be maintained or improved.”
Increasing NYU Secure Experience is a crucial step towards enhancing the protection of the NYU group. The service needs to be protected for all, whether or not they stay on, close to or removed from campus.
WSN’s Opinion part strives to publish concepts value discussing. The views introduced within the Opinion part are solely the views of the author.
Contact Molly Koch at [email protected].