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Team effort nets UHN Smart Commute Platinum Workplace designation

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Image of bicycles stacked against bike racks
For the first time, UHN has been recognized as Smart Commute Platinum Workplace – the top mark in the Metrolinx-run program – due to staff making their trip to work more sustainable by walking, cycling, carpooling and taking public transit instead of driving alone. (Photo: Flickr)

Thanks to a significant number of employees making their commute more sustainable by walking, cycling, carpooling and taking public transit instead of driving alone to work, UHN has for the first time been designated a Smart Commute Platinum Workplace.

It's the top designation from Smart Commute, a program of Metrolinx, the regional public transit agency, and the municipalities in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area.

How Green are UHN's commuters?

  • 2,407 staff members sign up for monthly TTC VIP passes
  • 1,198 bicycle parking spaces are used throughout UHN's sites
  • 700 Bicycle User Group members
  • Some carpool-only spots in staff parking lots
  • An online carpool matching resource links staff who want to share a ride
  • UHN-operated shuttle buses connect staff and patients between sites

"This designation demonstrates your commitment to promoting and supporting sustainable travel options for your organization, positioning you as a leader in corporate social responsibility," says Doug Spooner, Manager at Metrolinx.

Lisa Vanlint, Energy Steward in the Energy & Environment Department at UHN and champion of sustainable transportation within the organization, says the designation reflects  who we are.

"In healthcare, we strive to heal, but pollution from car emissions goes against that primary goal," Lisa says. "By participating in sustainable forms of transportation, we help unsnarl our city, clean the air and make the streets a little safer for all types of transportation.

"This helps our patients, our communities, and ourselves."

Carpool Week

February 5​ - 11, 2018

The top Smart Commute designation is well-timed with the upcoming Carpool Week in February.

Use the Smart Commute tool ​explore.smartcommute.ca/#/ to find a carpool partner and to log carpool trips.

Staff who log a carpool trip between Jan. 29 and Feb. 11 have a chance to win a $500 VIA Rail travel voucher. Staff can also use this tool to for other types of sustainable transportation, truly refreshing their A to B.

Drivers are encouraged to practice the 4R's:

  • Reduce: drive less
  • Re-mode: try another kind of transportation
  • Re-route: try a less busy route
  • Re-time: shift to off-peak hours if possible

Several key UHN departments collaborate regularly to encourage public transit, carpooling, walking, cycling: Energy & Environment, Emergency Preparedness, Human Resources TTC VIP Administration, Business Operations, Parking Office, and Wellness.​

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