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January 26, 2010

January 26, 2010

With the Olympics coming right around the corner, the daily commute is becoming a growing concern for everyone living in the Lower Mainland. The Vancouver Board of Trade’s Sustainability Committee has put together some helpful tips below to ease your experience and reduce your carbon footprint during that time:

  1. Take Transit. Leave your car at home and take the bus, SkyTrain, SeaBus or West Coast Express.
    → Take the Canada Line to and from the Airport. Encourage your friends, family and coworkers who are traveling to and from YVR to take the Canada Line. From YVR to downtown is only a 26 minute ride and costs a fraction of the cost of a taxi or parking. 
    → Fare Information: A two-zone adult fare is only $3.75 when traveling to YVR. Effective January 18, 2010 a $5 AddFare will apply to anyone traveling from the airport to Richmond or Vancouver. People carrying any TransLink pass (DayPasses, Monthly FareCards or annual passes such as the U-Pass, Government Bus Pass or Employer Pass) or using pre-paid FareSaver tickets won't need to pay the AddFare.
    → Transit trip planning and route information. Visit http://www.translink.ca
  2. Carpool, Rideshare or “Park & Ride.” Set up a carpool with your coworkers or neighbors to cut down on traffic and ease the stress and cost of your commute. Check out ride or car sharing networks such as the Jack-Bell Ride Sharing Network or the Cooperative Auto Network
    → The Jack-Bell Ride Sharing Network has created an online portal where you can have a corporate ride share website for your employees. This is a FREE network that will give your company a branded sub-site. Organizations can restrict registration to employees only, and can either limit matching to their group, or give individual employees the option to also match with the public and all other employer groups. More details can be found here.
  3. Telecommute or change your work hours. Convince your employer to let you work from home during the Winter Games, at least part of the week. Learn from other companies that make this work successfully, like Telus. Alternatively, try to avoid the regular rush hour periods by starting earlier and finishing earlier to allow you to temporarily commute during off-peak hours.
  4. Combine errands into one trip. Why make three trips when you can make one, saving yourself time and helping reduce air pollution and traffic congestion?
  5. Videoconference. Use videoconferencing as an alternative to traveling for a meeting. Not only will this save great amounts of time and money but it also helps reduce your carbon footprint.
  6. Ride a bike or walk – Even if you do it just once or twice a week, you'll reduce traffic congestion and pollution, and save money. All you need is a few bits of gear and you can bike all year round. There is also the added benefit of getting into shape and living a healthier lifestyle.
  7. Make a plan with your staff. Plan ahead to ensure everyone in your office has a commuting plan for the 2010 Winter Games. Consider buying your staff the six-week 2010 Games Transit Pass or BC Transit February 2010 Souvenir Pass to encourage use of public transit.
  8. Free up the streets and set an example. Instead of driving your kids to school, walk with them. It will ease congestion and emissions levels at school drop-off zones. The healthy lifestyle example may even help your children strive for their own Olympic goals.
  9. Maintain your car. If you must drive, maintain your car and have regular tune-ups. Change the oil and check tire pressure to improve gas mileage and the life of your car. Maintaining your car will prevent breakdowns and lower your car’s emissions.


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