Commuting by Bike

Resource Systems Group’s Eric Talbot rides his bike to work approximately 4 out of 5 days a week over the year. In the winter, when the weather is too harsh, Eric walks to work or rides the Green line on Advance Transit to White River Junction. Eric lives about a mile and a half from his office. His main motivations for riding his bike to work are that cars are expensive to own and maintain and he gets great exercise, especially going up a challenging hill on the way home.
Eric finds that most drivers are polite and accommodating to him on his commute. Even on roads without much shoulder, he has not had any problems. Eric mentioned a couple of benefits to working at RSG that help him commute to work on his bike: availability of shower on site and the ability to adjust his hours when the days get short to ride to work and home in the daylight

Transportation Award Winners Announced

King Arthur Flour, Dartmouth Coach, and Hypertherm vanpool drivers Bill Goggin and Dave Churchill were honored with transportation awards at the 12th Annual Meeting of the Upper Valley Transportation Management Association (TMA) on Thursday, June 19. The annual awards recognize organizations and individuals making it easier to bike, walk, carpool, and ride the bus in the Upper Valley.

A special award was presented to David Palmer, who retired this year from Stagecoach Transportation Services after more than 30 years of service to central Vermont.

“Our annual awards are one of the most rewarding parts of my job. It’s heartening to see that our region is building a culture around efficient transportation options and making real progress toward sustainability,” said Aaron Brown, transportation program manager at Vital Communities, which oversees the TMA. “We’re especially pleased to honor David Palmer, who turned a very difficult proposition – the building of a public transportation system in rural central Vermont – into a service that has helped thousands of local residents get to work, medical appointments, and other destinations efficiently and affordably.”

King Arthur Flour was honored as Workplace of the Year for its electric vehicle charging stations, internal bike-share program, participation in the Way to Go commuter challenge, and preferential carpool parking. Dartmouth Coach was honored for Project of the Year in recognition of its new service to New York City. The Commuters of the Year are Hypertherm vanpool drivers Bill Goggin and Dave Churchill.

The Upper Valley TMA is a program of Vital Communities that works to reduce reliance on driving alone. The TMA’s members include local municipalities, transit agencies, major employers, and three regional planning commissions.

Hypertherm Benefits

Hypertherm has rolled out some new benefits this January for smart commuting. Employees who drive a carpool, walk, or bike will receive $5 a day and carpool passengers will get $2.50. Along with the monetary incentive, carpools have designated preferred parking spots. For those who take public transit to work, Hypertherm will give employees free tokens to pay for their ride.

If it is time to replace a vehicle, Hypertherm will reimburse current associates $500 for the purchase or lease of a new or used, hybrid or conventional auto that gets 40mpg or better.

There are more reasons than ever for Hypertherm employees to branch out and try new ways of getting to and from work each day. They can save money and earn money!

Walk to Work

Smart Commute participants Sally McEwen and Anne D’Avenni of Mascoma Savings Bank both walk to work in Lebanon. Anne walks two or three times a week and it is about a mile round trip for her. Sally has been walking to work since she joined the bank in 1969. She has about a mile and half round trip. Both Sally and Anne supplement their morning walk with a brisk lunch time walk on the rail trail or around town. Mascoma Savings Bank joined the Smart Commute Project to encourage other employees to choose a healthy, affordable commute. The bank continues to encourage healthy lifestyles and going green with the development of a wellness committee. There has been a shift from driving alone to walking. Many employees share fitness classes and walk on breaks and lunches.

Commuting by Bus

Kristi Veverka, Hypertherm employee, committed to try taking the Connecticut River Transit bus to work last summer. Although she was “really feeling out of my comfort zone” on the first day — she got lots of help and advice from other bus riders. Since then Kristi has striving to ride the bus 5  times a week. Kristi says, “I find riding the bus so relaxing. I am taking a class right now and have lots of reading to do so the bus gives me a perfect opportunity to get a couple of hours of reading in each day. I would have a hard time doing that otherwise. Also, I purchased an i-Pad and it is awesome on the bus. I have 3G coverage almost the entire ride. The money I save on riding the bus more than pays the monthly cost to have the i-Pad.”

Hypertherm pays for 50% of Kristi’s bus fare. Kristi still needs to drive 5 miles each way to the Park & Ride at exit 8, but she saves driving the 38 miles every time she takes the bus in to work.  Other Hypertherm associates also ride the bus, Tony Bertone, Barbara Churchill, Scott Hagland and Jeff Page, and  there is room for more.

1 2