Georgia Commute Options Launches "Drive Change" Campaign To Reduce Traffic Congestion In Metro Atlanta

Staff Report From Metro Atlanta CEO

Thursday, April 19th, 2018

Georgia Commute Options, a program managed by the Atlanta Regional Commission, announced the launch of a new campaign, "Drive Change," focused on reducing congestion and smog emissions stemming from single-occupancy vehicle travel across 19 counties in metro Atlanta. The "Drive Change" campaign encourages commuters, employers and schools to consider clean commute options instead of driving alone to and from work. Clean commute options include transit, carpools, vanpools, biking, walking or flexible work arrangements, FlexWork, to include teleworking or a compressed work-week schedule.

"With an estimated 2.5 million people to move to the Atlanta metro area by 2040, it's paramount to Atlanta's quality of living that we offer a variety of commute options," said Malika Reed Wilkins, Executive Director of Georgia Commute Options. "The Drive Change campaign will serve as a great sticking point to make commuters and employers aware of existing initiatives and incentives, and we'll also be launching new programs, all with the goal of driving real and meaningful change into daily commuting."

As part of the Drive Change launch, Georgia Commute Options is also releasing new data from research conducted last month that highlights commuter attitudes and behaviors. Key findings include:

  • On average, commuters in the metro area travel 19 miles to work, taking approximately 40-50 minutes depending on which way they are traveling. Traveling home from work typically took longer than traveling to work.

  • Commute time is very important to commuters when they are changing or starting jobs, with 75% of respondents agreeing that their commute time is an important factor in their decision to live where they do.

The research also showed that a majority of commuters are open to using commute alternatives in exchange for cash incentives. As part of the Drive Change program, Georgia Commute Options is promoting its existing cash incentives for commuters who opt to try a new option:

  • Gimme Five: Program participants can earn $5 a day — up to $150 — for trying a new commute option other than driving alone.

  • $25 Enter to Win: Existing clean commuters are entered to win monthly $25 prizes for logging their commutes.

  • Monthly Gas Card: Carpoolers with three or more riders can earn monthly gas cards.

  • Vanpool $50 Referral: Individuals can receive $50 for referring a new vanpool rider after that new rider has completed three consecutive months on a vanpool.

  • Guaranteed Ride Home: Program participants are promised a guaranteed ride home when unexpected events occur. Participants can receive up to five free rides, by taxi or rental car, to their home or car in case of emergency.