On Monday, Aug. 1, all med center employees will be required to have registered for TravelSmart in order to use their ID badges to ride Metro transit buses.
Colleagues who rely on the bus to get to or from work should make sure they are registered before that date. There will be a short grace period, but employees will not be permitted to ride Metro buses without a badge connected to an active TravelSmart account.
After registering, people should expect a 48-hour delay before a card is turned on. Employees who already registered for TravelSmart do not need to re-register.
For the last year, employees have not been required to swipe their badges because a new payment system was in place. That is no longer active. On ORBT buses after Aug. 1, all med center employees will be expected to tap their badges instead of simply showing the driver.
TravelSmart transit benefits also apply to employees who rely on MOBY. MOBY is Metro’s shared, complementary ADA paratransit service for users who cannot access existing routes due to a disability or a disabling health condition. Riders must register to use MOBY and use their ID badge.
Now is a great time to try the bus system. There are several health benefits associated with mass transit. As more people use public transportation, there are fewer cars on the road emitting harmful pollutants. Increased use of public transportation also leads to a reduction in the need for parking, which costs money, takes up space and has a large carbon footprint associated with the energy intensive production of concrete.
Plus, improved urban air quality is healthier. Air pollution has many connections to public health issues, including myocardial ischemia, chest pain, coughing, throat irritation and more. And there is a much lower rate of passenger death rates for buses compared to passenger vehicles.