Taking the bus or vanpooling can save you money on gas, and has other benefits. Instead of driving in rush hour traffic, you can sit back and enjoy a stress-free commute with a coffee and newspaper. You don’t have to worry about where to park, and if you have a few drinks on a Friday night, public transportation offers an alternative to getting behind the wheel. Taking public transportation also puts fewer vehicles on the road, which reduces harmful emissions and pollutants entering our air, and increases the longevity of our road system.
Several kinds of public transportation modes are available in North Carolina:
- Rural/Community Transportation. Traditionally serving clients of human services agencies; however, the vast majority of these systems now serve the general public.
- Regional Community. These systems are composed of two or more contiguous counties providing coordinated/consolidated service. More than one-fourth of North Carolina’s 100 counties have rural transportation provided by a regional system.
- Urban Transportation. Nineteen urban transportation systems serve citizens in cities across the state. They range from the largest, Charlotte Area Transit System, to smaller systems such as AppalCART in Boone.
- Regional Urban Transportation. These systems connect multiple municipalities and counties. They include Triangle Transit and the Piedmont Authority for Regional Transportation.
- Intercity buses. These buses provide transportation from city to city within the state.
- Light Rail (serving Charlotte). Since the fall of 2007 when it was initiated, Charlotte’s light rail system has served an additional 2 million passengers annually.
- Vanpooling. Vanpooling allows several commuters going to and from the same areas to share the cost of commuting to work, etc. Vanpool programs are offered in the Charlotte, Raleigh/Durham, and Greensboro/Winston Salem metropolitan areas.
For information on transit available in your area, visit www.ncdot.gov/nctransit. To find a carpool or vanpool, visit www.sharetheridenc.org.
Get healthy and spend some quality time outdoors by riding a bicycle or walking to your destination. Find information on maps, laws and health benefits here.
Ideas for encouraging employees to leave the car behind when they come to work.
- Allow your staff to work at home, if possible, through telecommuting.
- Use teleconferencing, instead of driving to meetings.
- Promote alternatives to drive-alone commuting, like carpooling, vanpooling, biking, walking, or teleworking.
- Obtain and promote transit maps and schedules for nearby routes to your employees. Including: bus, car/van pool, and bike routes.
- Start a ridesharing program. Contact N.C. Air Awareness at 1-888-RU4NCAIR for help.
- Offer employee incentives, recognition, and praise for alternatives to driving alone.
- If possible, encourage flex-time to reduce roadway congestion during peak commuting hours.
- Subsidize transit (bus and vanpool) for your employees. Visit www.CommuterChoice.com to learn about corporate tax incentives for subsidizing transit.
- Buy a bike rack for your employees' use, or allow them to park bicycles safely indoors.