Washington, D.C.—Commuter Connections is launching a pilot program to encourage commuters in three of the region’s most congested corridors to try carpooling to and from work instead of driving alone. Commuters traveling mornings on I-395 from the District across the 14th St. Bridge into Northern Virginia; the Capital Beltway from Bethesda to Tysons Corner; and the Beltway from the Baltimore-Washington Parkway to I-270; and back in the afternoon, may qualify for a $1 each way incentive for carpooling during the ‘Pool Rewards pilot program.
Commuter Connections, a regional transportation network coordinated by the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board at the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG), is conducting the three-month pilot program as part of its ongoing efforts to improve traffic flow, decrease air pollution and promote long-term changes in commuting behavior. The program is similar to Atlanta’s highly successful Cash for Commuters effort. At the end of its first five years, the Atlanta program has coaxed more than 29,000 drivers out of their cars and saved 32.8 million vehicle miles traveled, with 64 percent of its participants continuing to use commute alternatives at least once per week after the cash reward program ended.
“Commuter Connections continues to test new ways to encourage behavior change in Washington area commuters,” said Nicholas Ramfos, director. “If a small cash incentive can get 700 people out of their cars and into a carpool for the duration of this test project, and perhaps longer, this may help begin to make a difference on the region’s most congested corridors.”
Commuters who travel these three routes during peak commuting times can sign up for the ‘Pool Rewards program at www.commuterconnections.org. In addition, ridesharing commuters may also be eligible for other money-saving services such as the free regional Guaranteed Ride Home program that ensures a ride home when one of life’s unexpected emergencies arise.