THE UNIVERSITY OF WROCŁAW IN COOPERATION WITH THE MPK
The University of Wrocław commences a collaboration with the MPK (Municipal Public Transport Service). Promoting public transport among students and university staff is only a part of the plan. The university tram has entered the streets of Wrocław and the MPK wants to use the help of scientists in their investments.
“We hope that botanists will help us heal the existing railyards and sociologists will analyse what else could be done to encourage to the use of public transport” said the head of the MPK Wrocław, Krzysztof Balawejder. “Together with the rector we also want to give Wrocław’s trams the names of famous figures and scientists from the University” he added.
The University of Wrocław reminds that it has 25 000 students, 3 500 employees, which is not without significance for the traffic in Wrocław.
“It makes a difference whether our students and employees travel around the city using public transport instead of their own cars” described the rector of the University of Wrocław, professor Przemysław Wiszewski. “This is at least a few thousand of cars which could either be left on private car parks or contribute to the city’s traffic jam. That is why, in cooperation with the MPK, we want to lobby for introducing discounts, special offers for students and employees of the University of Wrocław. In this way, we might encourage them to use public transport around the city”.
The municipal transport operator (MPK) plans to create, together with the students, an educational path in the Ołbin depot. He also wants to consult the art historians in relation to the modernization of this area.
“The University of Wrocław is one of 10 Polish Research Universities” reminded Wiszewski. “Together with the MPK, we are planning internships for those studying geography, IT, philology, administration and economics, law, history and history of art. One could imagine the cooperation between our scientists and students planning to modernize the Wrocław’s oldest Ołbin depot or to create an experimental green railyard next to the University’s Botanical Garden”.
Another idea is to use trams to monitor air pollution and temperature.
“The heads are full of ideas, the hearts are filled with enthusiasm. At this point we are signing the agreement and we are certainly going to keep the citizens informed of the results of our cooperation”, added Balawejder.
The first ideas are already on the table. Scientists pointed out the possibility of analysing the passenger flow, as well as the potential analysis of the interconnection grid.
“Hundreds of people use the services of the MPK” reminded the rector of the University of Wrocław. “On the one hand, this is an interesting research field, for instance, for our sociologists. On the other hand, I think our specialists could help the municipal transport operator with better understanding and responding to the passengers’ needs. Our students can study the number of passengers in the MPK vehicles or identify the impact of various factors (such as demography, spatial utilisation) on the public transport demand”.
The highlight of the initiated cooperation is the “University of Wrocław” tram, which is embellished with graphic prints on its sides, associated with the Wrocław’s oldest university. Among other things, one might spot the main building of the University or the Fencer Fountain. The University also strives to see the latest scientific achievements of Wrocław researchers featured in the trams.
tłum: Justyna Szpytko Instytut Filologii Angielskiej.