Published October 1, 2016
PSS and Slow Roll Buffalo Unite North Campus, South Campus, and Neighborhoods In Between
The UB Professional Staff Senate (PSS), partnered with Slow Roll and GoBike Buffalo in hosting the first UB Bike Stampede and Pedal Party. As the rain let up on Saturday morning, 65 members of the UB community, including staff, faculty, students, friends and neighbors, gathered on the South Campus in front of the recently renovated Hayes Hall. Riders set out on an 11 mile ride up Millersport Highway (State Bicycle Route 517) to the North Campus past the Solar Strand and into Coventry Loop. The return journey included several residential streets of Amherst, Town of Tonawanda and University heights. The after-party following the ride featured UB’s own Big Blue and Little Blue food trucks and the live music of alumnus Adam Bronstein’s band Gravy.
Addressing riders at the starting line, PSS Chair Domenic J. Licata remarked that Slow Roll has proven over the past two+ years to be one of the most significant forces in Buffalo’s resurgence—a celebration of community uniting neighborhoods by bringing Buffalonians together in a fun and healthful way. It was the goal of the PSS Sustainable Living Subcommittee on Alternative Transportation, chaired by Jim Gordon, to bring that celebration to the streets of Amherst, unifying our geographically separated campuses with neighborhoods in between.
A social worker collecting information for her research into campus outreach in the surrounding community was invited to join the ride and offered a Reddy Bikeshare Social Bicycles. Afterwards she remarked on the comradery shared by the riders, “You hear a lot of talk about community, but this was actually it. You could see it happening.”
The day’s event was also a celebration of UB’s a leadership in sustainability. Advocating for the use of sustainable transportation, the PSS Sustainable Living Subcommittee on Alternative Transportation promotes a culture that encourages community members to reduce their carbon footprint and improve their health while engaging more with each other and the natural environment.
The initial stretch of the ride along Bailey Avenue, Grover Cleveland Highway and Millersport Highway is designated part of State Bike Route 517.
Two initiatives demonstrating UB’s a commitment to sustainability were highlighted as part of the Bike Stampede. Historic Hayes Hall recently celebrated its Grand Reopening after a renovation that brought the 19th Century hospital building into 21st century with state of the art teaching and learning technologies. Performing to LEED Gold standards, the renovation combines a complete restoration of the 79,085-square-foot building’s exterior with reimagined interior spaces. Home to the School of Architecture and Planning, many of the building’s utility systems, such as fire suppression and air circulation systems, are exposed so students can see and understand how these systems work.
Moving beyond obtaining carbon neutrality and lessening our environmental footprint, the Solar Strand greets visitors to the North Campus through a connected cultural and natural landscape. Like UB, it is multidimensional and cross-disciplinary, merging teaching, learning, art, research, sustainability and community engagement. Designed by renowned landscape architect Walter Hood, the project’s logic is derived from the “strand” concept: a linear landscape formation and DNA fingerprint. The array has a rated capacity to produce 750,000 watts of energy. It is one of the largest ground-mounted solar arrays in New York State, generating enough carbon-free energy to power approximately 700 student apartments.
The Bike Stampede and Pedal Party was made possible with the support of:
Contact: Domenic J. Licata, PSS Chair, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 716-645-2003.
Slow Roll Event occurred October 1, 2016.
Edited January 3, 2017