On July 31, a group of UNIST students, faculty, and staff volunteered their time to coordinate the ‘Abandoned Bike Removal Project’, as part of its annual campaign to maintain public order on campus.
The event began with participants meeting up at the square in front of student dormitory at UNIST. As the day arrived, approximately 70 students, faculty, and staff teamed up to remove bicycles that have been abandoned at bike racks across campus.
The vision for this event is to bring students and campus users together to clean up the campus and shed light on the issue of bike abandonment on campus. Bicycles have been the main transportation system for students residing on campus. And yet, they have been abandoned at bike racks across campus, over time. This has posed a significant challenge to campus users by causing safety, accessibility, and aesthetic problems.
The Human Resources Management Team and the Student Dormitory Council of UNIST recruited volunteers for the campaign beforehand and made an announcement that there will be a disposal of abandoned bicycles on UNIST campus. Beginning last May, UNIST Student Dormitory Council inspected all the campus bike racks and looked for telltale signs of an abandoned bike. Assumed abandoned bikes were tagged with a notice that the bike was deemed abandoned and would be removed on Wednesday, July 31, 2019.
In the afternoon of that day, participants worked in groups to collect tagged bikes across campus, loaded them into trucks, and took them to a designated storage area.
“This campaign has been organized for the maintenance of public order on UNIST campus,” says Director Hanseog Nam from the Office of General Administration. “Many thanks to the staffs and students for their hard work to improve the beauty of our campus environment.”
Under the current Act on the Activation of Bicycle Use, abandoned bicycles are held in a six-month mandatory storage. The six month period is provided for bicyclists who might want to collect bikes that they left behind. When this period ends, the bikes in holding will be removed and transferred to Geoma Co., Ltd.
Geoma Co., Ltd. is a social enterprise located in Ulsan and has been offering bicycle repair and recycling. In September of last year, UNIST signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with UNIST Student Dormitory Council and Geoma Co., Ltd. to establish a branch office in Student Dormitory for regular repairs and maintenance on campus.
“It was great seeing UNIST members come together as one,” says President Mooyoung Jung of UNIST. “Seeing everyone participate really showed how much they care about the campus.”
Meanwhile, children from UNIST Daycare Center also provided support for the volunteers. They made campaign-related collaborative posters and banners, and exhibited at the student dormitory of UNIST.