Sustainable Campus



Make your journeys to and from our University sustainable.


The largest transportation challenge facing our city is controlling the increasing road traffic and congestion arising from continuing growth in car ownership.

The Newcastle University Travel Plan Update 2015 (PDF: 10MB) sets out objectives and targets to address all campus related transport issues, from staff and student commuting patterns to business related travel, the use of University fleet vehicles and delivery traffic.

The University is committed to bringing together land use and transport planning through its Master Plan and future developments to:

  • reduce the need to use private cars
  • make the best of existing infrastructure
  • manage travel demand
  • promote the use of more sustainable modes of transport

The Estates and Facilities travel pages (University login required) has further information about parking and staff travel.


There are lots of events to do with travelling in the city and to our campus. Take a look at our News and Events section for upcoming and regular events.

Membership of working groups

The University is also a member of key local and regional transport working groups, such as:


Perks for everyone

Staff perks

Perks for students


Walking is good for you and it’s free. Walking into University and between campus locations is an easy way to build some exercise into your day. Priority on campus is given to pedestrians and all those moving through campus by foot and wheelchair. This priority is supported by the pedestrianisation of King's Road through the heart of the campus and improvements to accessibility in areas such as the Old Quadrangle, Claremont Quadrangle, King's Gate and King's Walk. 

You can find out more about the main walking routes through campus and the City Centre in the Campus & City map. 

Health benefits 

  • Reduces the risk of chronic illness (such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, asthma, stroke and some cancers) 
  • Walking at three mph for 30 minutes, a 60kg person will burn 99 calories 
  • Walking the 10,000 steps a day advised by the NHS will significantly improve your health 


  • Wear a good pair of shoes 
  • Encourage a neighbour to walk with you 
  • Carry a personal alarm for safety 
  • Use well-lit routes 
  • Avoid walking on the road


Cycling is better for you than driving or getting public transport. It can help you lose weight, reduce stress and improve fitness. Cycling into University is an easy way to include exercise in your daily life. 

Health benefits

  • An 80kg person will burn more than 650 calories riding a bike for an hour


  • Wearing a helmet is important
  • Remember to obey traffic lights and road signals
  • Don’t ride on the pavement unless a sign says you can
  • Use lights and reflectors so you are clearly visible
  • Don’t use headphones or a mobile while cycling

I’m interested in buying a bike to cycle to campus. Does the University offer any support for my purchase?

Yes – the University provides a cycle-to-work scheme benefit, allowing colleagues to save money on a new cycle and spread the cost, using salary sacrifice. The scheme is provided by Cyclescheme and managed by People Services; details of how to take advantage of this benefit can be found on the Cycle Scheme page on the People Services NU Connect pages (University login required).

Bicycle Users Group (BUG)

BUG includes University staff and students who travel by bike. The group aims to improve facilities around campus, providing an up-to-date website of important information for cyclists and coordinating various cycling events.

To be added to the BUG mailing list, please contact with the subject "Join BUG".

Public Transport

CO2 emissions per train/bus passenger are on average 6-8 times lower than car travel.

  • It’s better for the environment than driving alone in a car
  • Travel time can be used for leisure (reading/sleeping/social media and so on)

Did you know the University offer a range of discounted travel schemes for staff?

If you would like some advice on which scheme would offer the best value for money for your particular journey, please contact

If you’re new to public transport, plan your route at

The table below shows the average times from locations in various areas for the journey into the University campus.

OriginWalkingCyclingPublic Transport
Jesmond 10 mins 9 mins 20 mins
Heaton 42 mins 15 mins 30 mins
Gateshead 35 mins 17 mins 18 mins
Gosforth 58 mins 14 mins 30 mins
Wallsend 1 hour 21 mins 28 mins 30 mins
Ryton 2 hours 32 mins 49 mins 43 mins
Plan your route here WalkIt Cyclestreets Travel Line

Using public transport can sometimes take longer than cycling or walking. If you can, try and walk or cycle into University. If not, using public transport is a much better option than driving.


Currently, COemissions from cars make up 13% of the UK total. As well as harming the environment, cars are expensive to run. According to the RAC, the average cost of running a new car in 2013 was £6,689. That’s £128 a week or 55p a mile.

But if you do need to use a car, more sustainable options are available.

Co-Wheels Car Club

Our staff can register to use the Co-Wheels car club for both business and private use. Students can register for private use. As a dual member, you will receive free annual membership and no minimum monthly spend will apply to your private account.

To sign up call Co-Wheels on 0191 375 10 50 or register online. For further help, please contact

There is a vehicle based at King George VI Car Park (Toyota Yaris) and additional vehicles are available within easy walking distance of the central Campus area.

CoWheels Logo

Car sharing

Currently, the average car occupancy is 1.58 persons per car. If that increased by 50% to 2.37 people, it would lead to a fall in traffic of a third.

Benefits of car sharing

  • Reduces the number of cars on the road, reducing pollution, congestion and parking problems
  • Reduces stress if you don’t do all the driving yourself
  • It’s sociable

As a car sharer at the University, you can apply for a half price car sharers permit.

How to drive sustainably

If you do need to drive, there are methods to drive in a more environmentally friendly way:

  • keep your tyres properly inflated: they're safer, they'll last longer, and can improve your petrol mileage by >3%
  • plan ahead for the shortest, most petrol-saving itinerary
  • stay below 70mph: travelling above this speed can use up 25% more fuel, making driving considerably more expensive
  • try to avoid road rage: aggressive driving wastes petrol, lowers petrol mileage and doesn’t help your stress levels
  • use cruise control while on the motorway, as this can save petrol
  • get your car serviced regularly to maintain engine efficiency
  • make sure you’re using the right specification of engine oil
  • travel light and remove excess weight: do you really need all that stuff in the boot?
  • cold starts use more fuel: combine journeys to aid fuel efficiency
  • drive smoothly, accelerate gently and look ahead to try and prevent unnecessary braking
  • change up the gears earlier when the engine speed is at ~2000rpm in a diesel car and ~2500rpm in a petrol car
  • take off roof racks to reduce drag
  • don’t idle: an idle vehicle gives off 80% more pollution than one that’s moving – turning the engine off and then back on again uses less fuel than idling longer than 30 seconds



The Bike Users Group provides information about cycling for University staff and students.

Co-wheels is a service providing an electric car which is available for staff use.

Cyclestreets is a cycle route planning site where you can plan journeys taking into account your cycling speed.

Go Smarter to Work provides information on the information and help available to staff through the University about sustainable travel.

Estates and Facilities can provide you with University car parking information, discounted travel information, car sharing permit information and details of cycling infrastructure on campus

Newcastle City Council contains lots of local information for cyclists including advice, cycling parking spaces and new proposed routes, as well as up to date information about travel plans.

Nexus provides links for metro, bus, rail and ferry travel, including discounts, timetables, maps and ticket buying services.

Phoenix Taxis are available to the University, providing an electric car service.

Recyke y’ Bike is a volunteer community project selling spares and second-hand bikes every Saturday.

Sustrans is a charity aimed at helping to make more environmentally friendly transport choices including honest cycling and public transport information.

The Cycle Hub is a café, bike shop, repair workshop and bike hire shop all in one.

Travel Line is a site providing local public transport information and timetables. Travel Line also has a specific route planner page where you can work out how to get from A to B using public transport.

WalkIt is a site and application allowing the planning of walking routes, telling the user the amount of steps taken and calories burnt as well.