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Commuter survey respondents use a variety of travel modes to access work or school. Some respondents vary their commute practice based on the day of the week, and other commuters use the same mode every day. Commuter survey responses in terms of primary commute practice were:
- Commuters that only drive alone
- 4,058 respondents (56 percent of total).
- Commuters that drive and use alternatives
- 1,835 respondents (25 percent of total).
- Commuters that only use commute alternatives
- 1,305 respondents (18 percent of total).
- Other commuters
- Not in workforce (39 respondents).
- Unemployed (5 respondents).
- Retired (7 respondents).
The following sections summarize findings in key areas. The information provides insight that may assist the greater Houston region in developing, promoting, and incentivizing alternative commute modes.
What are the three most important reasons you commute by….?
You indicated you only use one mode while commuting in the last 30 days.
If that mode was not available to you tomorrow, would you have any other way to travel to work/school?
Consider the following circumstances…which would have the most impact on your commute over the next five years?
Which of these would be better for the greater Houston region? Spending more taxpayer money to…
Employer Policies. In some cases, there is a disconnect between respondents interested in alternatives and their ability or incentives to do so.
More about Telecommuting/Teleworking
Motivation: Financial and Other Incentives
Preferred Communication Methods
In your personal experience…
What about employers? Did the survey reveal the extent to which some employers are involved or would be willing to be involved in improving the commuting experiences of their employees? Yes.
Researchers received more than 213 complete responses and 20 partial responses from employer representatives. Researchers reviewed responses and determined the data to contain usable responses from 61 unique employers – representing 10,000s of employed persons in the greater Houston region. The following information summarizes employer representative opinions:
About 33% of employers allow telecommuting/telework
About 50% of employers allow an alternative work schedule (compressed or flexible)
Employers felt their work-sites were overall most accessible via transit and less accessible by walking or biking
Company’s existing practices?
- 57% – Do not currently provide employees with benefits or information
- 23% – Provide employees with information about commute options
- 20% – Provide employees with benefits about commute options
Most common benefits are transit, vanpool, carpool (if company offers benefits)
Companies willing to provide transportation benefits and incentives do so to:
- Reduce parking demand
- Retain employees
- Reduce employee stress
“Government and non-profit organizations should offer programs and incentives to facilitate commuters using a commute mode other than driving alone.”
- 8% – Disagree
- 32% – Neutral
- 60% – Agree
“Businesses should provide programs and incentives to facilitate employees using a commute mode other than driving alone.”
- 4% – Disagree
- 31% – Neutral
- 65% – Agree
When asked about various incentives or practices regarding commuting and who should take the lead to implement or encourage each…business representatives saw the employer role being to help most with…
- Alternative work schedules (60%)
- Telecommute, telework programs (52%)
- Preferred parking for carpools/vanpools (47%)
- Providing information, increasing awareness (45%)
- Pre-tax transit, carpool or vanpool subsidy deducted from paycheck (45%)
Employer representatives were less interested in their company’s role to provide the following incentives:
- Prize drawings (36%)
- Lunchtime shuttles (36%)
- Secure bike parking, showers, and lockers (28%)
Employer representatives thought the region benefits when commuters travel by alternative modes because of…
- Reduced traffic congestion
- Reduced family expenses
- Improved air quality
Please cite the study using the following information:
- Study Name: H-GAC Travel Options Planning & Research Study
- Survey Name: 2014 Commuter & Employer Transportation Survey
- Author: Texas A&M Transportation Institute
- Retrieved from: www.ghcommutes.org