Published: Sept. 20, 2017

The CU Boulder Distribution Center soon will begin handling most campus UPS package delivery and outbound shipping, a move that is expected to generate multiple benefits for the campus community while still ensuring the same high level of service.

UPS truckThe change begins Oct. 2. Under the new arrangement, UPS will deliver incoming packages to, and collect outgoing packages from, the Distribution Center, 3300 Walnut St. The Distribution Center will handle transport to and from campus departments, primarily utilizing its existing mail and freight channels.

The new agreement does not affect student packages sent to the residence halls, as those packages will continue to be routed through the UPS Store at 2480 Kittredge Loop Drive. UPS will also continue to handle Saturday deliveries for all of campus.

Distribution Center officials expect the move to reduce Monday-through-Friday UPS truck traffic on campus streets and sidewalks by about 95 percent, reducing congestion and creating a safer environment for students and all campus pedestrians, particularly during class-change periods. Because the Distribution Center already has drivers servicing most of the same delivery locations as UPS, the change also advances campus sustainability efforts by reducing fossil fuel consumption and emissions.

“We are rethinking the supply chain across multiple fronts in an effort to improve campus sustainability, safety, procurement costs and quality of service, and we will continue to look for opportunities to enhance how we support the campus and its mission of teaching and discovery,” said David Kang, vice chancellor for Infrastructure and Safety.

The Distribution Center began handling all Staples deliveries to the campus in August of last year, a transition that has gone well, with Staples actually reporting fewer delivery complaints than before that shift.

“The success of the Staples initiative helped confirm to us that we could utilize our Distribution Center capabilities to further reduce truck traffic on campus and increase safety by working out this new arrangement with UPS--and do so without compromising the level of service that the campus expects,” said Tim Golden, associate director of the Distribution Center.

Packages with guaranteed delivery times will still arrive to their destinations on time. The main difference campus UPS customers might notice is in regard to packages sent using standard shipping. If a department’s usual UPS carrier arrived at roughly the same time every day, that department might notice packages arriving earlier or later in the day, depending on Distribution Center routes. In general, most UPS packages will now arrive at the same time as regular mail arrives.

Separate from the Distribution Center’s new arrangement, campus UPS users will soon notice another perk: lower rates for outbound packages. Those discounted rates will be available starting Oct. 2.

For more information about the new arrangement with UPS, the Distribution Center has created a list of frequently asked questions on the Mail and Package Services webpage.