Med center offers benefits for ‘active commuting’

The results of the 2022 sustainability engagement survey indicated 40% of med center employee commute trips are made in a way other than driving alone in a car. This means employees are taking the bus, biking, walking, carpooling or working from home — and it’s considered “active commuting.”

Active commuting has several benefits, including reducing greenhouse gas emissions, reducing costs to the individual and improving individual and community health

In 2012, only 12% of trips were made to campus in ways other than driving alone by car, and the goal was set to increase this to 20%. Since then, the med center has worked to support active commuters, primarily through the TravelSmart program, and the 20% goal was met in 2018.

The new goal was set at 35% by 2030, and that was achieved far ahead of schedule in 2022 with the 40% result.

This success is primarily due to more employees working from home, alongside small increases in biking, walking and other forms of sustainable transportation. The 35% goal will remain in place for now to account for changes in remote work policies implemented after the survey results were collected.

Data from the next survey, scheduled for 2024, will be used to continuously evaluate this goal. To learn more, check out the sustainability dashboard

Anyone interested in getting involved can sign up for the TravelSmart program. When registering, choose from several modes of transportation and access benefits, including a free Omaha Metro bus pass, one-year Heartland B-cycle pass, reduced parking ratesemergency ride home program, access to secure bike parking, lockers and showers and more.

Important update: Another year of free Heartland B-Cycle memberships is available.

The Heartland B-Cycle program will offer a limited number of free one-year memberships to the med center community. This bike sharing system allows members to easily unlock, ride and return bikes at a network of more than 70 docking stations around the city.

Checking out a bike to travel across campus for meetings saves time and prevents the need to re-park a car. Bicycling also is a great way to reduce someone’s carbon footprint, support cycling infrastructure in Omaha and exercise, all at once. Heartland Bike Share even has electric-assist bicycles, which help with hills.

Click here to find detailed instructions for how to sign up for TravelSmart to get a promo code and activate a Heartland B-cycle membership.

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