MORPC Matters: Gohio Commute program brings options to commuters

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As central Ohio’s growth continues, residents deserve options when it comes to their daily commute.

The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission’s Gohio Commute program aims to provide those options.

Patty Olmsted

The program is part of a statewide network that offers an online rideshare platform for commuters to explore such sustainable commute options as carpooling, vanpooling, biking and transit. Gohio Commute also helps companies develop rideshare programs for their employees.

Specifically, MORPC’s Gohio Commute Vanpool Program is a solution for traveling to and from rural areas. Many employers and employees look to vanpools as a cost-effective way to commute to work. Although some people are reacclimating to the idea of a shared commute, vanpooling allows for a more controlled environment because it consists of a small group of people who regularly ride together.

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As companies are increasing their diversity, equity and inclusion efforts, they have been turning to MORPC’s Gohio Commute Vanpool Program to offer sustainable transportation options for shifts when transit routes are not available. Companies are discovering that offering transportation services, like vanpooling, plays a valuable role in supporting DEI efforts while also improving talent retention and recruitment.

In today’s competitive labor market, innovative employee benefits outside traditional offerings sometimes are needed to attract new talent. Transportation benefits communicate to candidates that the company is invested in its employees. Providing these benefits can make a company a more attractive employer in an increasingly competitive job market.

MORPC’s Commute Action Fund is a tool for central Ohio companies to fund these transportation benefits. This helps to solve workforce transportation challenges, motivate employees to drive less and encourage them to use sustainable modes of transportation to the workplace. Applications for the Commute Action Fund are available, and companies could receive up to $5,000 in dollar-for-dollar matching funds.

In staying with MORPC’s sustainability goals, there is even a solution for those who might be worried about being stranded at work without a personal vehicle.

MORPC’s Emergency Ride Home (ERH) Program is a free service that assures commuters they will not be stranded at work in the case of emergency, illness or unexpected overtime. In these circumstances, the program provides a free taxi ride home. The ERH program allows users four trips per calendar year for added peace of mind when it comes to a sustainable commute.

We urge commuters to rethink their ride and learn more about all the benefits of the Gohio program by going to gohiocommute.com/morpc.

Patty Olmsted is the senior business outreach coordinator at the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission. MORPC’s purpose is to bring communities of all sizes and interests together to collaborate on best practices and plan for the future of the region.

This article originally appeared on ThisWeek: MORPC Matters: Gohio Commute program brings options to commuters