In a groundbreaking decision, the occupants of the Kohler Environmental Center have decided that, in order to reduce the environmental-science facility’s carbon footprint, all shuttles to campus are to be replaced with eight-seat tandem bikes. This innovative idea initially came from KEC Program Director Mr. Joseph Scanio, who felt that the current means of transporting students across the three-quarters of a mile between the main campus and the KEC was not nearly environmentally conscious enough. Telling reporters that he plans on manufacturing the bikes himself, Mr. Scanio added that the bikes’ construction will feature only reused or repurposed materials that cannot decompose and would otherwise clog landfills. “All excess Styrofoam on campus will be used for the wheels and brakes of the bike,” he explained. “This choice of material facilitates the generation of friction when the rider decides to stop, making it a very pragmatic and economical decision.”
Reportedly, Mr. Scanio also plans to incorporate into the tandem bike design recycled plastic—more specifically, the plastic of lost Choate Cards. According to reports, as of April 21st, any unclaimed Choate Cards found on campus will be brought to the SAC and deposited into a designated incineration bin, which will melt the cards on site into raw material to be shaped later into the bicycles’ seats. “It’s a shame that so many students lose track of their Choate Cards,” Mr. Scanio lamented. “You’ll see them left in all kinds of places: the dining hall, students’ rooms—even students’ own back pockets. Now that we’re collecting all the cards we see in these places, we can finally put all this plastic to good use.”
Students living in the KEC have already been given access to a prototype of the tandem bike in order to work out some kinks in the design. Although Mr. Scanio reports that it has taken the students several attempts to get the hang of the pedaling and steering, he has said that he is confident that in the upcoming weeks, his students will be ready to ride the tandem bikes and remain upright, balanced, and together. Though yet uncorroborated, rumors that Mr. Scanio is planning to offer indoor tandem biking as a winter athletic intramural have circulated among members of the KEC program and made their way to reporters, who are working on confirming said reports.
Despite Mr. Scanio’s optimism, according to some KEC students, in the director’s rush to put the bikes into action, he overlooked one of Choate’s foundational edicts: the helmet rule. Said Calla Chan ’17, “I had to remind Mr. Scanio about the beloved helmet rule several times throughout the creative process. Last year, the student body fought tooth and nail for the rule to be approved—we shouldn’t disrespect their efforts.” Consequently, after much deliberation, the inventive KEC students decided that the safety gear would include knee and elbow pads, custom KEC biker shorts, arm bands, and a helmet, all made of biodegradable material.
At press time, Mr. Scanio and Chan were seen comparing the carcasses of cantaloupe and honeydew melon in an attempt to determine which would be more suitable for use as a compostable helmet.