Transportation

Students walking, bus driving and car in front of EV3

TRAVELWISE  |  TRANSIT  |  CYCLING AND WALKING  |  CARPOOLING  |  EMERGENCY RIDE HOME  |  CARSHARING  |  ELECTRIC VEHICLES

WATERLOO'S GOALS

  • Increase the proportion of sustainable commuting trips to 90% from 2016 baseline of 85% by 2025

  • Increase electric and alternative-fuel vehicle use on campus by 2020

  • Reduce fossil fuel consumption across the campus fleet by 25% from 2015 baseline by 2025

Supporting SDGs

SDG 11 - sustainable cities and communities SDG 12 - responsible consumption and production SDG 13 - climate action

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Did you know that transportation accounts for nearly 50% of all greenhouse gas emissions in Waterloo Region? The University of Waterloo is committed to providing programs, services, and resources to help you integrate active and sustainable travel into your weekly commuting. It's a great way to save money, improve local air quality, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and contribute to a healthier lifestyle! 

Use the tools below to help you with a low-impact commute:

GoTravelWise

TravelWise PictureUWaterloo has partnered with the TravelWise program to access the gotravelwise.ca website and associated network. Here, you can:

  • See your options: How much does your commute cost you by car, bike, or bus? How much carbon do you produce? How many calories could you burn? How long will it take? Search your trip to UWaterloo and find all that and more!
  • Search for carpools: Want to find the perfect carpool match? Plug in your info and see who is out there waiting. (More information under Carpooling.) 
  • Track your trips: Log your trips to win quarterly prizes, keep tabs on your progress and impacts, and help UWaterloo better understand employee commuting.

Staff, faculty, and students can join the University of Waterloo private user group by signing up with their @uwaterloo.ca or @edu.uwaterloo.ca email. Visit the links below to register:

Public transit

Public Transit PictureUWaterloo is located along many major transit routes and the upcoming ION rapid transit corridor, making the bus a simple and cost-effective way of getting to campus.

Cycling and walking

BicyclesUWaterloo South Campus is located along the Laurel Trail, and is in a great location for many cycling and walking routes. South Campus is filled with pedestrian-friendly walkways, with traffic mostly limited to services vehicles and those using accessible parking spots.


Carpooling

CarpoolingSharing the ride is one of the easiest ways to save money on gas and parking, and cut your environmental impact at least in half!

Interested in learning more about carpooling? Check out some opportunities below.

Emergency Ride Home

Calling an emergency ride pictureSometimes the unexpected happens, and sustainable commuting options are not always as flexible as driving. Don't worry, you're covered.

Staff and faculty who walk, cycle, take transit, or carpool are eligible for the Emergency Ride Home (ERH) program through TravelWise and the Region of Waterloo. Individual employees may be reimbursed up to $75 per trip, for a maximum of 4 trips per calendar year.

There is no pre-registration required. Just grab a receipt from your cab driver to submit a claim. The Region of Waterloo reserves the right to inquire about the nature of your emergency. Employees abusing the ERH will lose further privileges. Check out the Emergency Ride Home (pdf) form to learn what is covered and how to make a claim.

The ERH is not available for undergraduate or graduate students at this time.


CarSharing

CarShare PictureEmployees: Want to walk, bus, or bike, but need your car to get to meetings? Communauto (formerly Community CarShare) has parking spots and vehicles available for rent near campus. Visit the Communauto website for more rates, vehicle locations, and to sign up

Electric vehicles (EVs)

EV ChargerEV Charging Stations

There are a growing number of EV charging stations across the campus. These stations are currently available for use, free of charge, but users must display a valid Waterloo daily or monthly permit while charging. Except for the Tesla charger, all stations on the University of Waterloo currently use the FLO/AddEnergie Network, allowing you to view station status to see which locations are available, and monitor the status of your charging session during the day.

Current locations include include:

  • E6: Tesla charger (Non-FLO network), Level 2 charger, Level 3 rapid-charger
  • SCH: Two Level 2 chargers
  • EC2: Three Level 2 chargers
  • EC4: Three Level 2 chargers
  • NH: Two Level 2 chargers
  • L Lot: Three Level 2 chargers (in development)
  • Plant Ops lot: Two Level 2 chargers (in development)

You can check station availability and the charging progress on your vehicle through a smartphone app from the station vendor. For more information on the charging stations, visit Parking Services' EV Charging Policy

Fleet Electrification Incentive

Waterloo offers a $10,000 subsidy to any department seeking to replace an existing internal combustion engine vehicle with a fully electric modified. Launched in January 2022, the subsidy is a key action to overcome up-front cost barriers from EVs, which are often more expensive to purchase compared to a conventional vehicle. Although there is typically a favourable life cycle cost of owning and operating the vehicle, as they require less maintenance and have lower energy costs, the initial cost can be a barrier.

Funding details:

  • Must be applied toward cost of purchasing an EV
  • Can be combined with any other federal/provincial purchase incentive or rebate
  • Must be for University-owned vehicles (not leases)
  • Purchased vehicle must be fully electrified (not hybrid)
  • Funds will be transferred upon successful purchase of the vehicle

If you have any questions or would like to arrange for this to be applied toward your vehicle purchase, please contact Mat Thijssen.