USC Transportation Article, by Sophia Greenberg Adjusting to college life is hard enough without having to tackle the beast that is navigating Los Angeles and discovering all it has to offer. Often, USC students confine themselves to a perimeter of mere blocks from University Park Campus if they don’t have a personal car. Even then, extreme traffic can put a damper on the adventurous spirit. Luckily, the Department of Transportation at USC offers tons of options for students looking to broaden their horizon and explore not just the beautiful city of Los Angeles, but Southern California and beyond. The following are some services that USC and the Department of Transportation facilitate directly to make transportation as seamless as possible for students, faculty, and staff: USC Shuttle Buses These shuttle buses make stops at Union Station, Health Science Campus, University Park Campus, Marina Del Rey, City Center, and the USC Parking Center. They offer free rides for USC students, faculty, and staff. You can find a full schedule of routes and times here. Campus Cruiser This is a ride share service where USC students drive other students, faculty, and staff using university-owned cars and vans. Campus Cruiser operates at Health Science Campus Monday through Friday, 5pm-10pm and at University Park Campus 7 days a week, sundown to 12:45am. The boundaries for both campuses can be found here. USC Uber USC has partnered with Uber to bring free rides to students at or around University Park Campus 7 days a week from 7pm to 2am. The deal is activated with a code distributed by the university’s administration at the start of each semester, and is input into the Uber app. The rideshare service operates with UberPool only, and within a 2 mile service radius of University Park Campus. You can find exactly how to register your Uber account with this USC partnership here. Carpooling If you already own a car and want to save on parking passes, or have a group of friends or colleagues who commute to USC in the same direction, you can apply for a carpool application and receive discounts on a USC monthly or semester parking pass for both on- and off- campus lots and structures. All members of a carpool must commute at least 3 miles and carpool 80% of the distance and time to qualify for a carpool permit. The carpool vehicle must also be occupied by at least two USC staff/employees/students traveling together between their residence and worksite. You can fill out the carpool application here. The following are services that partner with USC and either offer discounts or provide special services to students, faculty, and staff: Enterprise Enterprise has an office on University Park Campus next to the Department of Transportation and Card Services, open Monday through Friday, 8:30am-6pm, and Saturday 9am-Noon. It offers discounted rates with a USC ID and will rent cars to students 18-20 years old without issuing an underage renters fee. You can book a car with USC Enterprise here. Zipcar Zipcar is a car rental service that operates on an online reservation interface, providing USC students with immediate, 24/7 access to cars kept on and around University Park Campus. It offers a discounted membership fee of $35/year, and gas and insurance are covered. With Zipcar, students can use the car for a single hour or days at a time. You can learn more about USC Zipcar or begin your membership here. Prime Time Shuttle Prime Time Shuttle offers transportation services from any airport in the LA Basin, like LAX, Santa Monica Airport, or Burbank Airport, to all USC Campus Locations with a 10% discount for all USC students, staff, and faculty. You can reserve a space on a Prime Time Shuttle here. Zimride Zimride is an alternative to carpooling where commuters rent out spaces in their personal car or purchase a seat in someone else’s car, splitting the cost of getting to a shared location. Zimride works well for commuting, running errands, or even road trips. The car-share service offers free membership for USC students, staff, and faculty. You can learn more about USC Zimride here. The following are transportation options provided by the city of Los Angeles that service University Park Campus and the surrounding vicinity: MTA Bus/Train Routes To ride MTA buses or trains, first purchase a TAP card from a machine near a Metro station. Three Expo Line stations service University Park Campus: Expo/Vermont, Expo/USC, and Jefferson/USC. You can find bus and train routes that currently serve University Park Campus and its vicinity here, and a map of Downtown and its servicing Metro lines here. USC graduate students are eligible for discounted student TAP passes, found here. Metrolink Rail Lines You can find a complete list of the Metrolink rail lines that service USC here. LADOT Transit LADOT offers busses with fewer stops and reduced fare to make the commute into Downtown LA accessible from all over the LA area. You can find the complete schedule for Commuter Express busses to DTLA here, or for DASH busses to DTLA here, and discover which option works best for your point of origin. You can find all of this information and more at the URB-E Mobility Hub, opening its doors in August at the University Village.
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