LiveGreen plans transportation week activities

May 16-23 is National Transportation Week!

A week to acknowledge all of the hard-working employees in the transportation industry. This year, the UNMC/Nebraska Medicine Office of Sustainability is celebrating with two activities:

  • Selfie prize drawing: Staff, students and faculty are encouraged to take photos of themselves riding Metro transit from May 16-23. Photos submitted to this Kudoboard will be entered to win a drawing for a $50 Visa gift card.
  • Ride along: Join a group of med center staff to ride Omaha Bus Rapid Transit (ORBT) from 42nd and Dodge streets down to the Bike Union Coffee House for a free coffee on Thursday, May 19. The group will meet at noon and return at 1 p.m.

When more people use public transportation, there are fewer cars on the road releasing emissions that pollute our air. Increased use of public transportation also reduces the need for parking, which costs money and takes up space. In Omaha, the average cost for a stall in a parking garage is about $119 per spot per month over the course of its lifetime.

Public transportation is great for the environment. In the United States, public transportation saves 6 billion gallons of gasoline annually, which is equivalent to the energy use of 6.7 million homes for one year. Not only does our transit system reduce vehicle emissions, it also supports our neighbors who can’t afford to or choose not to own a car, which AAA estimates costs $9,282 per year over the useful life of the vehicle.

Taking public transportation is also a healthier way to travel. Air pollution is a public health issue, including myocardial ischemia, chest pain, coughing, throat irritation and more. Even if taking public transit doesn’t work for your daily commute, swapping a few drive-alone trips each week has an impact.

If you are new to taking Metro transit in Omaha, the first thing you should do is sign up for Travelsmart to receive free bus passes. Then download Metro Omaha’s MyRide app to track the location of buses around town. Find more tips and tricks on how to ride the bus on the LiveGreen website.

Those who can’t make it to the ride along on May 19 can try to ride ORBT to an errand or lunch date sometime next week. ORBT buses come every 10 minutes and are equipped with WiFi, bike racks and air conditioning.

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