Industrial engineering students leave their mark on the streets of Buffalo

Members of UB's IISE student chapter teamed up with GObike Buffalo to help make the city safer by painting crosswalks.

by Whitney Singleton

Published November 14, 2017

The Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers’ (IISE) UB student chapter teamed up with local organization, GObike Buffalo, to make the streets of Buffalo safer by helping to paint crosswalks at one of GObike’s Tactical Pop-up Projects. 

“I like to think of us as everyday engineers because we can go into any situation, analyze how things work, and think about how to make it better.”
Kathryn Lukasiewicz, president
IISE

The IISE members were looking to take the knowledge they had learned in the classroom and apply it in a real world setting. With the help of Christine Human, associate dean for accreditation and student affairs in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, the organization was able to connect with Rebecca Reilly, GObike's Tactical Pop-up Projects Coordinator, and get on the streets of Buffalo to assist the organization.

“I like to think of us as everyday engineers because we can go into any situation, analyze how things work, and think about how to make it better,” said Kathryn Lukasiewicz, IISE president.

Along with measuring and painting the crosswalks, IISE members took notes and timed the painting process so they could apply what they had learned in the classroom and optimize GObike’s overall Tactical Pop-up Project process. 

“The Tactical Pop-up project has been a way to prototype traffic calming measures temporarily, while also opening the door for communication and collaboration with residents in infrastructure deficient parts of town. I knew these aspiring engineers would probably enjoy a challenge. I let them know our best time for putting down a crosswalk was 40 minutes and challenged them to beat our time,” shared Reilly.

“It was incredible, after going through the process with them they were able to average about 15 minutes per crosswalk. They were a joy to work with, we'd love to collaborate with them some more,” continued Reilly.

After the Tactical Pop-up Project event, IISE members analyzed the notes they had taken and produced a document featuring potential improvements GObike could implement to make their events run smoother. 

About GObike

According to its website, GObike is an organization working to build a thriving, dynamic and connected Buffalo by promoting biking, alternative transportation options, and improved streetscapes to create positive impacts on health, the environment, the streets and the overall quality of life for all residents.