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CommuteCon 2017

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Green Business Programs and How TDM Can Green Your Community

Kent Epperson
Director of Traffic Solutions
Santa Barbara County Association of Governments

Session Description

Santa Barbara County’s Traffic Solutions rideshare program promoted behavior change aimed at reducing the number of single-occupancy vehicles used to make local commutes. The organization has been involved with the California Green Business Program since 1994.

One of Traffic Solutions’ key messages is that the commuting routines of employees matter, and make a major difference in the environmental footprint a business generates. Companies can register with the California Green Business Program through Traffic Solutions online, and access tools that provide:

  • An easy-to-use checklist that help businesses evaluate their sustainability practices
  • Methods of identifying and tracking success when implementing green measures
  • A “green scorecard” that quantifies progress

Traffic Solutions is a firm believer in the value of commuter benefits programs, as their effectiveness at promoting behavior change is proven. When registering with Traffic Solutions, businesses must submit an approved plan that encourages the adoption of sustainable commuting alternatives. Traffic Solutions also emphasizes the value of cash incentive programs, as they are among the most effective drivers of change.

Ideally, cash incentive programs should be meaningful, fun, easy to use, and equitable, with automated monthly or quarterly distributions. Alternately, as a substitute for a cash incentive program, Traffic Solutions suggests implementing five programs from the following list:

  • A formal telecommuting program
  • A formal compressed work schedule program to reduce the number of commuting days per week
  • Pre-tax deduction options that employees can use to pay vanpool or transit fares
  • Transit and/or vanpool passes, vouchers, or subsidies
  • A preferred parking program
  • Secure bicycle parking, lockers, and showers
  • A parking cash-out program
  • Electric bicycle charging stations
  • An “earn-a-bike” program
  • Employer-provided vehicles for use in vanpools or carpools
  • Shuttle services to local public transit hubs and stations
  • Lunchtime shuttle services
  • Company-owned bicycles or vehicles for running local errands
  • Employer-sponsored bicycle safety education programs
  • On-site employee amenities, such as catered lunches, child care, exercise facilities, etc.
  • Free parking at vanpool staging areas or local park-and-ride lots

Traffic Solutions also helps companies address and overcome common challenges to program implementation. Further information is available at the Traffic Solutions website.