SMART Commuters, Comcast Honored for Reducing Traffic
February 22, 2007 Mukilteo, Wash. –
Dave Michel and Justin Thompson had never met before Thursday, but they do share a common trait – they enjoy their daily commute. The two were named the 2006 Saves Money And Reduces Traffic (SMART) Commuters of the Year at the annual Snohomish County Visionary Awards luncheon Thursday, sponsored by Community Transit. Also at the event, Comcast was named the Employer of the Year and Kathy James of State Farm in Bothell was named the Employee Transportation Coordinator of the Year. Michel, who lives on Queen Anne Hill in Seattle, doesn’t own a car. Instead, he uses four buses – three Metro and one Community Transit – during his commute to Stevens Hospital in Edmonds. Michel was named the SMART Commuter of the Year for a site affected by the state’s Commute Trip Reduction Law (CTR). He likes taking the time on his bus trips to relax and also gets some exercise walking from the bus stop to work. Thompson, who lives in Bothell and works in Redmond, is a carpool driver. He works at a site not impacted by the state CTR law, but still carpools to help reduce traffic for everyone. James, the Employee Transportation Coordinator at State Farm in Bothell, helps employees there find different methods to get to work. She put together a Bike to Work Day team of employees, hosts transportation fairs, makes sure those who use commute options are honored for their efforts, and continues to follow up with new employees to suggest alternatives to driving alone. Comcast was the Employer of the Year for its efforts to get employees out of single occupancy vehicles. Some employees work from home; others work a compressed work schedule of four 10-hour days. In addition, more than 10 percent of the company’s 550 employees participated in the fall Wheel Options program, which encourages people to use commute options. Comcast also put together a Bike to Work team. In addition to these awards, the Visionary Awards event also recognized four Commuters of the Quarter, from which the Commuter of the Year was chosen. Other Commuters of the Quarter were:
- Jason Wilsey, who bikes to get from his Snohomish home to work in Marysville.
- Tim and Mary Jo Keil, who live on Whidbey Island and work in Bothell, riding Island Transit to get to the Mukilteo ferry. After the boat ride, they use a car for the final leg of their trip.
- Robin Brooks and Tracy Roeder, a mother-daughter team who live in Duvall and carpool to work in Mountlake Terrace.
The Snohomish County Visionary Awards were introduced nine years ago as a way to recognize employers who support Commute Trip Reduction (CTR), Employee Transportation Coordinators (ETC) who promote CTR and employees who make these programs work. The quarterly awards are selected by the Peer Advisory Board, a group consisting of ETCs and supported by Community Transit. Community Transit operates 33 local bus routes, 31 commuter routes and DART paratransit service throughout Snohomish County. It also offers carpool matching, one of the nation’s largest vanpool programs and offers travel training to disabled and senior citizens. Call Community Transit at (425) 353-RIDE or (800) 562-1375 for bus information, or (888) 814-1300 for carpool or vanpool information, or go to www.communitytransit.org
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