The Night Ride IMA Loop first started being talked about late Fall/early Winter quarter during the 2004-05 academic year. ASUW Vice President Andy O'Connell wanted to integrate the IMA into the Night Ride coverage area in order to increase safety and convenience for late-night users of the IMA. Discussions began between ASUW and Property and Transport Services (PTS) in order to research the feasibility of this new program. After a few lengthy discussions, in which the Finance & Budget Director was included, the integration of the IMA within the existing Night Ride loop was ruled out. Logistically, it was going to be too much in order to remap all of the routes, etc. in order to include the IMA. However, a different plan did seem possible.
The idea was to add a "straight line" route that went between the IMA and the Communications Building. Communications was one of the locations that was already in the Night Ride route. By having a shuttle that ran back and forth during the evening hours at the IMA, it would be able to service students without having to create the logistical headache of a route integration. This plan seemed like the way to move with the project, especially considering the uncertainty of student demand for such a service at the time.
The funding for such an addition would be $16-18,000 per year. In order to come up with the needed funds, the ASUW lobbied SAF for a one-time ~$37,000 grant out of the SAF Fund Balance. After deliberation, the SAFC granted the request on the condition that it would be a one-time piloting of the program and that SAF would not become the source of permanent funding for the project.
A contract was drafted and signed by both parties, ASUW and PTS, that authorized the creation of the Night Ride IMA Loop for a two year period, ending June 2007.
In 2005-06, no contact was kept with PTS. While a provision in the contract spelled out a process for discussing the ridership statistics of the project each quarter with PTS, this was not done. To be frank, the Finance & Budget Director dropped the ball on this one. The contract has one more year on the docket, as it expires in June 2007. I would highly encourage you to contact Teresa Seyfried and setup a meeting to go over ridership statistics for the 2005-06 year. Bring these statistics to one of the early meetings of the Board of Directors and decide on whether this program should move forward or not. If the program is cancelled, however, the additional unused funds will have to be returned to SAF; so keep that in mind.
My deepest apologies for neglecting this during the last year. It just kept getting pushed back and pushed back until it was too late. Don't make my same mistake!