SMART COMMUTE – NORTH TORONTO, VAUGHAN RECEIVES PRESTIGIOUS ECO-FRIENDLY BUSINESS AWARD FROM CITY OF TORONTO: CarpoolZone.ca Commuters Saved over $5 Million in 2009 by Carpooling

Amidst Toronto’s most cycling savvy businesses, Smart Commute – North Toronto, Vaughan (NTV) has been recognized as Toronto’s Bicycle-Friendliest Suburban Business for 2009. The not-for-profit received the award at the recent Bicycle Friendly Business Awards (BFBA), which recognizes an organization’s commitment to the advancement of cycling as a sustainable, costeffective and healthy mode of commuting.

“Cycling infrastructure, cyclist safety and cycling in general are increasingly relevant issues to Torontonians. Winning this award demonstrates to the community that Smart Commute NTV is committed to supporting cycling as an essential method of travel” commented Brian Shifman, Executive Director of Smart Commute NTV. “We were proud to be recognized by the City with other bike-friendly organizations such as Mountain Equipment Co-op and our partner Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.”

Councillor Gord Perks, who has worked with Greenpeace Canada, Pollution Probe, Toronto Environmental Alliance and the Better Transportation Coalition, presented the award. “It was a pleasure to be part of this ceremony and to present Smart Commute NTV with this honour. The BFBAs provide a well-deserved pat on the back to organizations in our community that support cycling as an eco-friendly, socially responsible method of travel”.

CarpoolZone.ca Commuters Saved over $5 Million in 2009 by Carpooling

Toronto – February 8, 2010. During Carpool Week (February 1 – February 5), Smart Commute NTV visited
Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Knoll, Sanofi Pasteur, North York General Hospital and other Toronto area worksites to encourage drivers to go to CarpoolZone.ca in order to see how much their daily commute costs in both dollars and emissions. CarpoolZone.ca matches commuters with similar schedules and routes so they can share a ride to work and split the financial and environmental costs of driving. In 2009, over 20,000 commuters in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA) saved over $5 million by carpooling.

“Carpooling is an effective way to reduce your transportation costs,” said Ryan Lanyon, Smart Commute Team Lead. “Our users are saving a combined average of $425,000 a month by sharing the ride to work.” In addition to cost savings associated with owning, driving and maintaining a car, carpoolers reap other rewards such as reduced stress, a more positive impact on the environment, and sometimes a preferential parking space at work.

“I started carpooling with two people and now we are a group of three and it is working very well,” says Sanjay Makwana, a current user of carpoolzone.ca. “Carpooling gives you lots of time to relax when you are not driving.”

For more information about carpooling in the GTHA visit www.carpoolzone.ca.

Background:
The first Transportation Management Association (TMA) in Ontario, Smart Commute NTV was established in 2001 and now operates two projects: in North Toronto, Vaughan and Northeast Toronto. On behalf of its partners, Smart Commute NTV represents approximately 90,000 employees and students. It functions as part of a broader network of TMAs across the Greater Toronto Area and Hamilton. It encourages individuals to Travel Smarter. Cleaner. Better. by considering alternatives to single occupancy vehicle commuting including cycling, transit, carpooling, walking, and tele-commuting.

For more information about Smart Commute NTV, or to schedule an interview with Brian Shifman, please contact Jody Graydon at jgraydon@smartcommuteNTV.ca or 416 736-2100 x 70690.

For more information about the Smart Commute Initiative or CarpoolZone.ca, please contact Ryan Lanyon at ryan@smartcommute.ca or 416-874-5933, cell 416-587-4375.

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About Smart Commute
Commuter benefits program for the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.

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