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Sun Rideshare News | Fall 2019

 

Carpooling, vanpooling bring key benefits to participants, employers and communities

Whether your employees care about air quality or just want to save a few bucks, carpooling and vanpooling are good examples of travel reduction habits that benefit employees, employers and the region.

When fewer cars fill our transportation corridors, employees have an easier, faster and safer commute to work. In the region, congestion is mostly experienced during peak hours – between 7 to 9 a.m. and between 4 to 6 p.m. – on major arterials when most people commute to work and school.

"Ridesharing can have the biggest impact on reducing congestion if you carpool or vanpool during peak hours," said Paul Casertano, transportation planning director for Pima Association of Governments. He noted that according the most recent census data, 10 percent of residents in the Tucson metropolitan statistical area (MSA) reported carpooling to work in 2017. The average commute time was 24.5 minutes, which is about one minute longer than Tucson MSA’s commute time in 2000.

Fewer vehicles on the streets result in reduced vehicle emissions and that, in turn, benefits the region’s air quality. For every 1.14 miles not driven, a pound of pollution is prevented.

Air pollution from vehicular travel is linked to a variety of health concerns including respiratory diseases, cardiovascular disease, allergies and neurological effects. Clean air not only contributes to healthy living, it can have an economic impact as well.

"Maintaining compliance with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ground-level ozone air quality standard through reduced miles driven benefits the region economically by avoiding additional costs and industry restrictions associated with noncompliance," said Dustin Fitzpatrick, air quality planning coordinator for Pima Association of Governments.

Less wear and tear on roads from a reduction in vehicle miles driven also can result in less need for both roadway and vehicle maintenance, benefiting community transportation maintenance budgets and the commuter’s pocketbook.

When employees carpool or vanpool, employers also gain parking spaces and less-stressed workers.

Other benefits that carpoolers and vanpoolers may receive include special front-door parking privileges from employers. Not only do carpoolers and vanpoolers share the costs of driving to and from work, they also can enjoy each other’s company and may establish new friendships with co-workers.

Contact a member of the TRP Team to learn more about federal subsidize for vanpools and how to qualify for sharing the ride and the cost of getting to work.

Learn more at SunRideshare.org

When is transit an option for me?

Carpooling and vanpooling are excellent cost-saving habits that support travel reduction. They are convenient and cost-effective options for some but, for others, transit may be a more convenient commuter choice. How can you help your employees determine if transit is the best option?

If your workplace is on or near a transit line, provide transit fliers, posters or brochures in common areas for employees. Schedule a meeting with employees interested in learning more about transit, invite a transit expert and help answer employee questions. Transit is a safe, reliable and affordable option that people may consider once they learn more.

Although not every employer is located on a transit line, transit services may not be too far away.

"Transit becomes a great option when transit lines are less than one mile from your place of employment and are less than one mile from your employee’s home," said James McGinnis, transit services manager for Pima Association of Governments.

If a mile is a little too far to walk, especially on hot days, you can encourage your employees to ride their bicycle to a bus stop. Biking to a transit stop is a great way to take advantage of public transportation in a healthy manner. The bicycle is faster than walking and is a great way to get some exercise.

People who do not live on a transit line may consider driving to a park-and-ride lot along their commute route. Park-and-rides are built for such commuters, plus parking is free.

For more information, contact Mary Carter.

How you can engage the workforce

As your company’s transportation coordinator, you have many ways to convey the benefits of travel reduction to your employees. Below are a few suggestions to get started:

  • Consider posting a short article or ad in the employee newsletter/email. Don’t know what to say? Look for articles, graphics and infographics in the SunRideshare.org library.
  • On the website, you will also find downloadable brochures, fliers and/or posters to share in the workplace. These are great ways to allow your employees to explore the use of alternative modes of transportation.
  • Ask to speak at meetings. Just taking a few minutes to speak at team, staff or companywide meetings can be a great way to introduce people to and educate them about travel reduction options.

Take advantage of the resources provided by Sun Rideshare to encourage employees in your organization to try carpooling, vanpooling or other modes of transportation.

Check out the latest TRP Employer Award winners

Sun Rideshare recognizes TRP companies for meeting specific goals, such as increasing alternative mode usage among their employees by two percentage points.

Click here to see recent winners of the TRP Employer Awards.

Important Dates

Task Force meeting is Monday, October 21st - 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. at PAG (1 E. Broadway Blvd., Ste. 401)

Need an article for your company/neighborhood newsletter?

All articles in Sun Rideshare News are available for non-commercial reuse. When you reuse an article, please ensure that all links remain active, all photo attributions remain intact, and attribution is given as follows: Published courtesy of Pima Association of Governments.

Interested in having your company sponsor TRP incentive programs?

For more information on how your company can sponsor TRP incentive programs, contact Mary Carter, PAG Director of Engagement and Partnerships.

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©Pima Association of Governments | 1 E Broadway Blvd, Suite 401, Tucson, AZ 85701 | Telephone (520) 792-1093, FAX (520) 620-6981