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July 18, 1996

Pitt, Port Authority launch program for faculty, staff, students

Beginning Aug. 1, Pitt and the Port Authority Transit (PAT) will launch a three-point transit program exclusively for University faculty, staff and students.

The program includes expansion of Pitt Zone bus service, discounted monthly bus passes for students, and discounted evening and weekend bus fares.

Under the new Pitt/PAT agreement, the Pitt Zone in Oakland, Shadyside and Squirrel Hill will be extended from Children's Hospital, where it currently ends, to Craft Avenue.

The Pitt Zone is that portion of Oakland, Shadyside and Squirrel Hill in which members of the University community can ride free on PAT buses by showing a current, validated University ID card.

Bus stops within the Pitt Zone are marked with a "U-Zone" sign. Maps and schedules are available from the Department of Parking and Transportation Office in Forbes Pavilion or at the information desk in the William Pitt Union.

"We tried to expand the Pitt Zone to include all of Zone 1," said Director of Parking and Transportation Bob Harkins. "However, the price tag associated with that was beyond our budget." Parking and Transportation, however, was able to negotiate a new student reduction on all PAT bus passes. For the past three years, full-time and part-time faculty and staff enrolled in the TransitChek program have received a tax-free discount of $7/month on regularly priced $40 PAT bus passes good for travel in Zones 1 – 5.

Beginning Aug. 1, students also will be eligible to receive a monthly bus pass discount. The savings for students will be $8 per month, which means they will pay $32 for a regularly priced $40 pass.

Student bus passes can be purchased only at the Parking Office, 204 Brackenridge Hall. To purchase a pass, students must present a current, validated Pitt ID card.

The third point of the new Pitt/PAT agreement, cash fare discounts, will be equally available to all members of the University community starting Aug. 1.

Faculty, staff and students with a current, validated Pitt ID will be able to ride anywhere within Zone 1 for 50 cents weekdays after 7 p.m. and any time during weekends. All other zones are full fare. Transfers are not available and the discounted fare is only good for ID holders; family members and guests must pay full fare.

In other Parking and Transportation news: * With the help of a Pennsylvania Department of Transportation grant, Pitt recently installed 20 bike racks in various locations around campus.

Also, 20 new bike lockers, capable of holding two bicycles each, have been purchased and installed in the plaza between Hillman and Forbes Quad.

* Parking permit and citation payments now may be made over the telephone by credit card. Call the Parking Office, 624-4034, weekdays 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

* Service along PAT's 64U and 74U routes has been discontinued for the summer. Alternate service for 64U is available on 61A, 61B and 61C routes and for 74U on 71A and 71C.

* The following van pools currently have openings for new riders: Allison Park/Mt. Royal Blvd., 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Garden City/Penn Hills, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Imperial/Oakdale, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Plum Boro, 8 a.m. to 4:40 p.m.; Sewickley/Route 65, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Wexford/Cranberry, 8:30 a.m. 5 p.m.

Free trial rides on these routes are available by calling the Ridesharing Office, 624-0687.

–Mike Sajna

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