Elmhurst College in suburban Chicago, Illinois is offering free bicycles to students, faculty and staff who pledge to not drive to campus for an entire year.
The program is open to continuing students who have reached sophomore academic status, faculty, and staff. Participants who sign an agreement will not be eligible to receive a parking sticker from Campus Security for the entire academic year, though they do get a winter exemption from December to March.
Bikes available in the program are the Hybrid style Specialized Crosstail and Specialized Ariel; and the city commuter style Schwinn World S in "men" and "women" frame styles.
Ripon College in Wisconsin pioneered a similar bike giveaway in 2008. Ripon is now in its second year of the Velorution project. To minimize vehicular traffic on campus, Ripon has systematically moved campus parking from the interior of the campus to the exterior in an effort to make car travel less convenient. In the last year, portions of the two main streets that bisected campus were removed to create a safer, greener, more pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly mall. The program's annual costs total approximately $50,000, or roughly the cost of three parking spaces in a multilevel garage.