Here at Community IT we depend heavily upon public transit, biking, and even walking to get to work and to many of our clients. In part this is because of our commitment to reducing our environmental impact, but they’re also just convenient ways to get around a busy city.
We’ve always participated in Bike to Work Day, so when we heard about the 2013 Big Green Commute it was a chance to make it a week-long commitment to greener transportation and perhaps develop some positive new habits along the way. 54 offices and 5,000 employees competed. We were glad to see several nonprofits competing, including new Community IT client Grantmakers for Effective Organizations (GEO).
For one week, May 13-17, staff tracked their methods of transportation to and from work. Self-propelled methods (biking, walking) scored the highest, public transit was close behind, and carpooling counted for something as well. We chose our office in part due to its proximity to the metro (U St), so that certainly helped our cause. And many of our clients are metro accessible, making it convenient for staff to ditch the car.
Last week at the happy hour and awards ceremoney at Penn Social, I was delighted to find out that we won for the Medium Office category (21-60 employeees)! We also received this beautiful trophy courtesy of the main event sponsors, ZGF Architects. Also, congratulations to GEO for their second-place finish in the “Small Office” category.
I’m an avid bike commuter myself, and I have no doubt it’s the most efficient (and healthy and environmentally friendly) way to get around the downtown DC area. I used to drive the measly 2-3 miles to work because that’s what I was used to doing and it was convenient (except trying to find parking!). It was hard to get started bike commuting because it requires more…energy…than the other methods. But now I don’t mind the effort, and much prefer getting energized on the way to work rather than standing in a crowded subway car or being stuck in traffic.
In any event, it’s great to see the attention this event brings to our commuting choices, and who doesn’t like a little competition as well?!