Rethink Series: RE-TIME your commute
What an exciting time to travel around the region this summer! With the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games beginning July 10 and the weather warming up, there is no better time to rethink the way you travel. Smart Commute is calling all you Greater Golden Horseshoe region folks to rethink your commute and explore your travel options by following the 4 Rs: Reduce, Re-mode, Re-time and Reroute. Changes are coming to the road and transit network during the Games, so why not shake things up with your daily commute?
- to alter the time or timing of (something)
Your usual time may not be the best time. Re-timing your commute is about avoiding the roads (and subway/train platforms) during the busiest hours. During the Games, the road and transit networks are expected to be busiest from 7-9 a.m. and 3-7 p.m., with the busiest being the afternoon peak. Perhaps you can re-time your commute by shifting your work day to avoid peak rush hours, work a compressed work week, or use real-time travel apps to help plan your commute.
rush hour: a time during each week day when traffic is at its heaviest.
Shift your workday
To avoid travelling during rush hours, talk to your HR department about the possibility of modifying your hours. For example, instead of working from 9am-5pm, try 7am-3pm. That way, you would be leaving work right before the busiest traffic time.
Work a compressed work week
compressed work week: when you work a traditional 35-40 hour work week, in less than the traditional number of work days. Example: instead of working five 8-hour days, you could work four 10-hour days.
In addition to easing congestion and reducing the number of commuters on the road, working a compressed work week can cut your total commute by 20%. It also offers enhanced work/life balance via a four-day work-week option that many employees dream of!
Use real-time travel apps
Whether you drive, take transit or bike to work, we’ve pulled together three apps to help you streamline your commute and save you both dollars and minutes. By using these apps, you’ll be able to compare all the schedules and options available.
Triplinx: the official trip planner and transportation information resource for the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA).
Simply enter your starting location and where you want to go, and Triplinx will tell you how to get there. You can customize your trip plan using the options such as maximum walking distance, walking speed or mode of transportation. Triplinx is designed to give information on trips using transit (combined with walk, cycle, or drive) and cycling or walking for the entire trip.
The Smart Commute online tool: Allows you to join or create a carpool, as well as plan and log trips. You can also join specific networks, so that your carpool requests are only within your workplace.
If you drive to work, maybe a slight adjustment to your timing will facilitate carpooling. Instead of leaving home and driving straight to work, leave a bit earlier and pick up a few co-workers along the way. Though it may add some extra time at the start, carpooling allows you to bypass traffic on major highways by using the HOV (high occupancy vehicle) lanes, making up for that lost time. These lanes are open from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily, from June 29 to August 18. Visit Ontario.ca/games2015 for more information on HOV lanes. If you want a place to meet, check out these convenient, free carpool lots.
The 2015 Games Trip Planner: the travel information source providing real-time traffic information for drivers during the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games.
Simply enter your starting location and destination, and the Trip Planner will give you the best route to get there with alternate route options, planning around all traffic updates. You can sign up to receive email or sms alerts about incidents and travel times along your customized routes on the ‘My Routes’ tab.