Recognizing Employers that Focus on Smart Commuting

York University recognized as

Smart Commute Regional Employer of the Year for 2012

 TORONTO, November 30, 2012 – Last night, at the sixth annual Smart Commute Awards event, several progressive workplaces were recognized by Metrolinx for their efforts to make commuting more enjoyable for their employees.

For many people in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA), the commute to work or school costs a significant amount of time and money, while contributing to daily stress levels. Employers are recognizing that they have a role to play in managing this.

“Smart employers understand the negative effects that a long, frustrating commute can have on their workforce,” says Bruce McCuaig, President and CEO, Metrolinx, “and through the Smart Commute program, they are taking positive action to improve their employees’ commuting experiences.”

The awards handed out last night at St. Lawrence Hall in Toronto recognized 11 workplaces for their outstanding efforts in helping employees explore alternatives to driving to work alone by walking, cycling, taking transit, carpooling or teleworking. One exceptional leader – York University – was chosen as the Smart Commute Regional Employer of the Year.

“Partnering with Smart Commute North Toronto Vaughan (NTV) has helped York University make significant progress in reducing drive-alone trips to campus,” says Gary Brewer, Vice-President, Finance and Administration, York University. “Over this past year, we have worked together to further our commitment to sustainable transportation by installing 45 Priority Carpool Parking spaces and doubling the number of Zipcars on our Keele campus. Our collaboration with Smart Commute NTV continues to help us provide our growing community with alternative and more efficient ways of travelling to campus.”

Other winning employers include the City of Pickering, GENIVAR Inc., Enbridge Gas Distribution, Loblaw Companies Limited, McCormick Rankin – a member of MMM Group, McMaster University, Tim Hortons, Top Drawer Creative, Transat A.T. Inc. and York Region.

This year, a brand new award, the Parsons Brinkerhoff Employee Engagement Award, was presented to Mohawk College. This award recognizes a Smart Commute employer that has demonstrated exceptional leadership, innovation and success in getting employees to re-think commuting.

All award winners were selected by an independent panel of community members from various sectors across the GTHA. Nominations were evaluated based on the employer’s commitment to the program, leadership in their communities, innovation and measurable results.

Smart Commute is a program of Metrolinx and the municipalities in the GTHA whose goal is to ease gridlock, improve air quality and reduce greenhouse gas emissions while making commuting less expensive and more enjoyable, helping support the objectives in Metrolinx’s regional transportation plan, The Big Move. To date, more than 250 employers with 600,000 employees have signed on to the program and are designated as Smart Commute workplaces. For more information, visit smartcommute.ca.

Metrolinx is working to provide residents and businesses in the GTHA with a transportation system that is modern, efficient and integrated. Find out more about The Big Move, Metrolinx’s transportation plan for the GTHA.  Find out more about PRESTO, Air Rail Link and GO Transit, divisions of Metrolinx.

Disponible en français.

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For further information:

Media enquiries – Vanessa Thomas (416) 874-5945

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

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