Photo by: LB Times
Ride-sharing system to revive campus biking

UPLB has moved to revive its bicycle culture. Through its collaboration with the Tipaklong Sustainable Mobility, Corp., a bike rental business owned by UPLB graduates, UPLB is set to pilot test a ride-sharing system, potentially the first among all higher education institutions in the country. 

Tipaklong will be providing a fleet of e-bikes and e-scooters which will be available for rent by the UPLB community through a mobile phone application. The system will undergo a feasibility study to determine the total number of trips, distance traveled, carbon dioxide emissions avoided, and other relevant data that can help improve the implementation.

With UPLB formally inking its partnership with Tipaklong, the UPLB Security and Safety Office will also be given bicycle units to support their patrol operations on campus. 

“This is us taking a revolutionary step. As a national university, we need to be conscious of our carbon footprint and proactively engage our constituents with our efforts to be steadfast stewards of our environment. One way of looking at it is by focusing on our transport system,” said Roberto P. Cereno, vice chancellor for community affairs.

This collaboration is part of the Green Mobility Initiative (GMI) which envisions a green community for UPLB by forging partnerships and developing mechanisms to promote and adopt environment-friendly modes of campus transport. 

To further support the GMI, UPLB is installing more bike racks on campus to encourage the UPLB community to embrace green and active transport. Through its partnership with various student organizations and alumni associations, UPLB has placed a number of bike racks in strategic campus locations, in line with the University’s Transportation System and Traffic Management Master Plan (TSTMMP). 

The TSTMMP also provides guidelines for the development of bike lanes on campus—a project that aims to promote not just green mobility, but also the road safety of cyclists. 

At present, UPLB has partnered with the UPLB Upsilon Sigma Phi, APO Theta Alumni Association, UP Beta Sigma Fraternity, UP Epsilon Chi Fraternity Los Baños Chapter, UPLB Forestry Society, and Grand Order of the Eagles, who all generously donated for the bike racks. UPLB also received bike racks from the European Union during the ASEAN-EU Bike45Ride event held at UPLB in 2022

Interested sponsors may still signify their intent to be part of the GMI by emailing the UPLB Office of the Vice Chancellor for Community Affairs at [email protected].With this initiative, UPLB is inching closer toward ecological sustainability and its vision of a green and future-proof campus, one pedal at a time. (Roi Mojado)

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