For Immediate Release
Sept. 14, 2018
Fairfax County is celebrating Try Transit Week Sept. 17-21, 2018, and Car Free Days Sept. 21 and 22, 2018, by encouraging residents to go car free for a day and try an alternative to drive-alone commuting. This year, there are two promotions to encourage commuters to try an alternative way to work:
- Pledge to take transit during Try Transit Week for a chance to win a year of free transit service from a participating Virginia transit operator as well as a pair of round-trip tickets aboard Amtrak’s Northeast Regional train! There are local prizes, too.
- You can also pledge to give your car some time off on the regional Car Free Day (Sept. 21 and/or Sept. 22) for a chance to win more prizes!
With the benefits of potential commuting cost savings, increased physical exercise, fewer cars on the road and a cleaner environment, everyone is invited to try a new way to get to work.
Employers Who Offer Transit Benefits
Many employers offer fare subsidies such as Metro's SmartBenefits to employees who take transit or ride in vanpools. Take advantage of the SmartBenefits Plus 50 program and you may qualify for a free $50 SmarTrip card! Some employers offer premium or reserved parking spaces for carpools and vanpools. Many employers also offer telework programs that allow eligible employees to work from home once or twice a week.
Try Transit and Take the Pledge to Win!
Residents who pledge to try transit Sept. 17-21 can also enter to win great prizes by visiting the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation’s Try Transit Week website at www.trytransitweek.org. One (1) GRAND PRIZE winner will receive bus or other transit passes equivalent to one year of transit service to and from work and a pair of round-trip tickets on Amtrak’s Northeast Regional.
Go Car Free on Friday, Sept. 21 and/or Saturday, Sept. 22
Fairfax County also is supporting Commuter Connections’ Car Free Day on Friday, Sept. 21, and Saturday, Sept. 22, 2018. Commuters in the Washington metropolitan area can take the pledge to go car free (or even car-lite!), and be automatically entered for even more prizes. Transit, ridesharing, bicycling, walking - even telecommuting - all count on Car Free Day.
From Rail to Bus to Bike – There Are Many Options to Try!
Did you know that on an average weekday, over 26% of Fairfax County residents aged 16 and older commute to work by a method other than driving alone? To join fellow commuters who have chosen to leave their cars at home, check out these great options for going car free:
- Local bus service is available on Fairfax Connector, TAGS, CUE, Metrobus and REX, and rail service on Metrorail, Virginia Railway Express (VRE) and Amtrak.
- Carpooling and vanpooling are other alternatives to drive-alone commuting that can reduce the stress of rush-hour driving and provide a faster trip by using High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes on I-95/I-395, I-495, I-66 and the Dulles Toll Road. There are more 40 Park and Ride facilities in Fairfax County where commuters can meet their carpools or vanpools, and most offer free parking.
- To go completely car free, commuters can try bicycling or walking. Fairfax County has a vast trail system and continues to build on-road bike lanes throughout the county. It's also easy to bike and ride in Fairfax County, because all Fairfax Connector buses are equipped with bike racks.
- Working from home also contributes to going car free! Companies looking for technical assistance to establish a telework program for their employees can contact the Fairfax County Department of Transportation's Commuter Services at 703-877-5641.
- Programs such as the Guaranteed Ride Home program make it easier for commuters to leave their cars at home and try transit or ridesharing because it provides a free taxi ride home in case an emergency occurs during the day.
Get Out of Your Car and Enjoy the Benefits
Fairfax County salutes commuters who regularly take transit, share a ride, or use another alternative to go to work each day, because traffic would be much worse if they decided to drive alone. Conversely, traffic would be much improved if more commuters opted to go car free even one day a week! By reducing the number of single-occupant vehicles on the road - or getting more people in fewer vehicles - commuters can enjoy less traffic while improving air quality and saving money on fuel, maintenance and parking expenses.
Connect with Fairfax County Transportation!
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• Call 703-339-7200, TTY 703-339-1608