Phoenix, AZ (Feb. 1, 2010) — Valley Metro Regional Public Transportation Authority is making it easier to conquer the commute this February, as it visits workplaces to help workers find alternatives to commuting alone.
Valley Metro and Governor Jan Brewer have declared February as “Try 1 in 5 Month” and challenge commuters to leave the car at home one day per work week. Commuters can save $70 per month by not driving alone in their cars, according to the AAA report “Your Driving Costs.” Carpooling and vanpooling, using public transportation, telecommuting, biking or walking to work can save as much as $840 in annual car-related costs. Some drivers report saving $156 a month due to the length of their commute, according to Valley Metro data.
“Some are predicting a surge in gas prices this spring, but planning ahead to try another form of commuting can save money,” says David Boggs, executive director of Valley Metro RPTA. “Even if you do not live near a bus or light rail route, other Valley Metro services can help you save money on your commute.”
In February, employees from Valley Metro’s Business Services department will visit select workplaces and show colleagues how to find a carpool partner using the free “ShareTheRide” online ride-matching system at ShareTheRide.ValleyMetro.org. It calculates the personal financial and environmental impact of not driving alone. ShareTheRide also maps bus and light rail routes serving a particular commute. Business Services representatives also will demonstrate how to load bus fare and will discuss the Valley Metro vanpool program, which helps groups of 6-15 commuters drive their own van to work together.
Quick stats about ShareTheRide*:
· 7,952 total users
· 190,413 calendar entries showing how they’ve opted to commute to work
· (bus, light rail, carpool, vanpool, walk, telework or drove alone. Only 7% drove alone.)
· 6.5 million miles of travel logged
· 3.7 million pounds of GHG saved
· 188,861 gallons of gas saved
· 109 companies are using the system to track Trip Reduction Program efforts
· Adding 1-2 additional companies per week
· Adding more than 800 new users each month
*Since launch on April 22, 2009 and as of Jan. 29, 2010
** source: Valley Metro RPTA press release **