Cats Cruiser could get redesigned

By Nini Edwards | @KyKernel

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Reevaluation is taking place for UK’s free escort system, Cats Cruiser.

Student Government is looking into a program from the University of South Carolina, the Carolina Cab, which has been successful since 2006.

The replacement program, based off of the Carolina Cab, is shaping the future Cats Cruiser.

Cats Cruiser would pick students up within a five-mile radius of the UK Student Center. Students are required to show their ID to allow a free ride for five miles.

New Circle Road is the barrier of the area a student can travel for free.

The cab’s meter will start after surpassing New Circle and students will pay the fee accordingly.

As the service stands now, students with ID’s can load a bus for free and take one of four fixed routes close to campus.

Busses circulate every 20 to 30 minutes from 10 p.m. to 3 a.m.

Through the reevaluated Cats Cruiser, students would be picked up at a specific location and may only receive a ride home.

“This is not going to take you to Qdoba or another location downtown. This will just take you home,” SG President Stephen Bilas said.

Cats Cruiser cannot take a student from the library to their car in K lot according to Bilas. To ensure the student is safe, the ride is purely a ride to a house.

An issue of concern is students using Cats Cruiser to attend house parties.

“If you have 100 to 150 people going to one residence, it is obviously going to be a red flag. And we can’t avoid that, but we can adapt this program,” Bilas said.

The Cats Cruiser is a work in progress and is not complete, Bilas stressed, but he believes this a better and safer alternative for students.

“[Cats Cruiser] has a lot of adaptability. We can see when and where students are going,” he said. “We can see the data and accommodate the needs to where students are.”

Cats Cruiser may be approved by the senate at the end of the semester to pursue a contract or be approved in the budget for next year according to Bilas.

The estimated time for Cats Cruiser to be accessible is for the 2013 or 2014 academic year.