Smart Commute for Workplaces

Vital Communities has for years helped employers lower the costs of commuting to work. Our goal is to reduce the number of people driving alone and:

  • Reduce the costs and hassles associated with employee parking
  • Make commuting to work a more affordable and enjoyable experience in the Upper Valley
  • Promote sustainability within the workplace
  • Improve traffic and parking conditions in major employment centers

How We Can Help

What is Smart Commute?

Smart Commute creates a tailored commuting program designed to meet your workplace’s goals and match your employees’ interests. Starting with a short, online survey, we establish baseline data on commuting habits, develop a sustainable commuting plan, and work with you to implement it.

Project Deliverables

  • Training of an in-house transportation coordinator
  • Personalized commuting plan
  • Consulting on commuter benefits packages
  • Tracking of emissions reductions and cost savings
  • Employee events and contests

Is it Affordable?

Vital Communities offers Smart Commute at no cost thanks to the support of the Vermont Agency of Transportation and our many member organizations and individual donors.

Contact us by email or call Bethany at 802.291.9100 x111 to get your workplace involved.

Commuting Benefits for Employees

Preferred Carpool Parking

Want to reward employees for saving precious parking spaces? Give carpoolers a space close to the entrance. Show your employees, customers, and partners your support for smart commuting. At about $50 per sign, preferred carpool parking is an affordable incentive.

Per Diem Benefit

Want to give your employees the freedom to choose from a variety of options? A per diem benefit of $2-$3 per day can encourage employees to try new options and help them with any new costs, such as bike helmets or transit passes. Or allow commuters to trade in “commuter points” for time off.

Transit Reimbursement

Advance Transit provides free service in the central towns of the Upper Valley, while Stagecoach and Connecticut River Transit offer low fares for long-distance commuter routes. As an employer, you can show your support for transit by purchasing passes for employees or reimbursing them for fares. Plus, employees can deduct up to $260 per month pre-tax for this employee benefit!

According to the Association for Commuter Transportation (ACT), the 2018 tax law preserves the commuter benefit. However, a section of the law does eliminate the ability of employers to write-off subsidized parking and transit costs and the bicycle benefit. But, ACT does not predict the tax law will have a major effect on employer-provided transit benefit programs across the country—read their analysis here.

Promote Biking & Walking

Provide bike racks and basic maintenance tools, such as air pumps, Allen wrenches, and spare inner tubes for employee use. Existing wellness programs offer good opportunities to promote biking and walking. Some workplaces also hold drawings for walking shoes, bike helmets, bike lights, and other fun gear.

Success Stories


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Ana Mejia

Climate Projects Coordinator

Transportation, Energy

 802-291-9100 x114

Transportation, Energy

— Ana Mejia, Climate Projects Coordinator

Ana Mejia is the Climate Projects Coordinator at Vital Communities. She is a Southern California native and first arrived to the Upper Valley in 2018. Ana received her Bachelor’s degree in Geology from Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania and her Master’s in Environmental Sciences and Policy from Central European University in Budapest, Hungary, where she wrote her thesis on solar home affordability and energy efficiency programs for low income families. When she is not actively working towards creating sustainable communities, Ana enjoys swimming, cross-country skiing, birding, and trying out new dessert recipes with her KitchenAid mixer.

Bethany Fleishman

Transportation Program Manager


 802-291-9100 x111


— Bethany Fleishman, Transportation Program Manager

Bethany Fleishman was born at the old Mary Hitchcock hospital in Hanover, N.H., grew up in West Hartford, Vt., and now lives in Hartford Village, where she can see the White River and the trains from her window. She has a biology degree from St. Lawrence University and has worked in public health outreach, as a line cook in San Francisco, a pastry chef in Hanover, and as a member of the Town of Hartford Selectboard. She serves on the board of directors for both Advance Transit and Upper Valley CarShare and is a lifelong bike commuter.