transportation infographic

Editor's Note: This article has been updated to reflect the accurate Wolfline times and other transportation services provided by the University.

On Jan. 31, Best Workplaces for Commuters named NC State was named one of the “Best Universities for Commuters” in the U.S. for offering employees and students exceptional commuter benefits. 

The list is comprehensive but includes several programs that NC State and local transit offers which qualify it for this distinction. 

Such things like: NC State’s Wolftrails commuter program for students and employees, employee vanpool programs, ShareTheRideNC program and the Wolfline which serves all three campuses and the two park & ride lots, were all mentioned in regards to the University’s extensive transportation options. 

According to Carolyn Caggia, transportation demand manager for Wolftrails, helping out commuters with transportation is a crucial concern for NC State. 

“Connecting our commuters to a range of transportation options is very important at NC State,” Caggia said. “Our WolfTrails alternative commuter program serves nearly 700 employees and students who are walking, bicycling, taking the bus, carpooling or vanpooling to campus.”

In NC State’s Transportation Master Plan from 2017, there were recommendations that the Wolfline should “implement routing and schedule changes to increase efficiency, provide additional on-demand night service from 12-3 a.m. and create a simplified service plan.” 

The master plan is detailed and comprehensive but the Wolfline has had major changes since then. There are several routes that run as late as 1 a.m, but none that run to 3 a.m. Whether a bus running this late is necessary was a debate in this plan.

The Wolfline faced a large bus driver shortage in November 2021, which heavily affected the routes and transportation options that were accessible to students and employees. This also affected how late the routes could run.

The master plan also highly recommended that NC State start utilizing some sort of on-demand service. On-demand service is a service that can be utilized during late-night hours to provide an extra resource for students to get to their homes safely. 

According to the master plan, “This service would consist of low capacity shuttles (i.e. vans, cutaways, or electric cars) that have limited hours of operation within the existing Wolfline transit system area, and primarily operate after the fixed-route service ends for the night.” 

The plan highlighted some new things the Wolfline could improve, with Transloc mentioned as something in need of improvement as well. It has been regarded as hard to use in the past and this issue continues to pervade students and employees. The app often has glitches and struggles tracking the buses accurately. 

Than Austin, administrative director of transportation at NC State, says our commuter benefit programs aid students and employees in saving them time, money and the stress of moving around campus. Austin also highlighted NC State’s critical relationship with Raleigh’s local transits. 

“Our partnership with the local and regional transit systems allows us to attract students and staff while helping reduce traffic congestion and contribute to the University’s sustainability efforts,” Austin said. 

For more information about transportation, local transit systems and commuter benefit programs, you can visit the NC State’s Transportation site to view the many options available for students and employees. 

Assistant Opinion Editor

I am a third-year in the Film Studies Program. I have a minor in Spanish and Psychology. I am currently the Assistant Opinion Editor for Technician. I usually write about social issues and campus life, will graduate in 2023.