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Transit Thursday

September 3, 2015

In this week’s edition of Transit Thursday we’re talking about… LIGHT RAIL!

That’s right. We have an exciting announcement this week for all you light rail fans out there. Don’t know much about light rail? You’re still in the right spot.

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Our friends over at Our Transit Future are working hard to make light rail between Durham and Orange counties a reality. This week, they crossed a giant item off their to-do list: The Draft Environmental Impact Statement(DEIS). Below you’ll find a description of this piece of the D-O LRT Project, locations where you can access the document, public meetings about the project, and information on submitting your comments on the DEIS.


 

 

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The DEIS evaluates the environmental, transportation, social, and economic impacts associated with the transportation improvements in the Durham-Orange (D-O) Corridor serving the cities of Chapel Hill and Durham in the Research Triangle region of North Carolina. The DEIS documents the evaluation of the No Build Alternative and the NEPA Preferred and Project Element Alternatives. The No Build Alternative is defined and analyzed to provide the base against which the NEPA Preferred and Project Element Alternatives can be compared.

Planning for high-capacity transit in the Research Triangle region began more than 20 years ago, and a number of studies have been conducted to advance major transit investments in the area. The proposed D-O LRT Project consists of a 17-mile light rail project from southwest Chapel Hill to eastern Durham and includes several educational, medical, and other key activity centers which generate a large number of trips each day. The D-O LRT Project would include 17 stations and has Project Element Alternatives including two sections with alignment alternatives (i.e., Little Creek with four alignment options and New Hope Creek with three alignment options). Additionally, there are five Rail Operations and Maintenance Facility (ROMF) options under consideration. The NEPA Preferred Alternative contains the preferred alignment options, one ROMF option, and station selections in each area where alignment and station alternatives exist.

COMMENT PERIOD:  August 28, 2015 – October 13, 2015

HOW TO COMMENT ON THE DEIS:  There are several ways to comment on the information in the DEIS:

  • By email to: info@ourtransitfuture.com
  • By postal mail to: D-O LRT Project – DEIS, c/o Triangle Transit, P.O. Box 530, Morrisville, NC  27560
  • By comment card at two public information sessions and two public hearings
  • Through the D-O LRT Project’s website: http://ourtransitfuture.com/deis/
  • In person during public hearings in Chapel Hill and Durham

PUBLIC HEARINGS:  Two formal public hearings on the DEIS will be held.  Each speaker will be allowed two (2) minutes to comment.  The dates for the public hearings are:

  • Tuesday, September 29, from 4-7 P.M. at Grumman Auditorium in the Friday Center, 100 Friday Center Drive, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-1020
  • Thursday, October 1, from 4-7 P.M. at the Durham County Commission Chamber, 200 East Main Street, Old Courthouse – Second Floor, Durham, NC 27701

There will be a formal presentation at 4:15 P.M. at each hearing location. The hearings are being held to solicit comments regarding the proposed D-O LRT Project. Hearing participants will have the opportunity to provide verbal comments on the DEIS (limited to 2 minutes per participant). A court reporter will be present to record verbal comments made by participants. Hearing participants will also have the opportunity to submit comments in writing during the hearings. Comments received verbally and in writing will receive equal weight. All comments submitted for the record will be reviewed and considered as part of the development of the combined Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS)/Record of Decision (ROD).

DEIS LOCATIONS:  The DEIS is available for public review in the following formats:

  • Electronically

▫      D-O LRT Project website at ourtransitfuture.com

▫      GoTriangle website at gotriangle.org

  • Hard Copies are available for review at:

▫      GoTriangle  Administrative Office, 4600 Emperor Blvd., Suite 100, Durham, NC 27703

▫      Duke University, Perkins Library, 411 Chapel Dr., Durham, NC 27708

▫      Durham City Hall, 101 City Hall Plaza, Durham, NC  27701

▫      Durham County Government Office, 200 E. Main St., Durham, NC  27701

▫      Durham Technical Community College Library, 1637 E. Lawson St., Durham, NC 27703

▫      North Carolina Central University, James E. Shepherd Memorial Library,

1801 Fayetteville St., Durham, NC 27701

▫      Orange County Government Services Center, 200 S. Cameron St., Hillsborough, NC 27278

▫      Town of Chapel Hill Town Hall, 405 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd., Chapel Hill, NC 27517

▫      University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Davis Library, 208 Raleigh St., Chapel Hill, NC 27517

▫      All Public Libraries in Durham County:

  • Bragtown Library Family Literacy Center, 3200 Dearborn Dr., Durham, NC 277704
  • Durham Public Library – East Regional Library, 211 Lick Creek Ln., Durham, NC 27703
  • Durham Public Library – Main Branch, 300 N. Roxboro St., Durham, NC
  • Durham Public Library – North Regional Library, 221 Milton Rd., Durham, NC 27712
  • Durham Public Library – South Regional Library, 4505 S. Alston Ave., Durham, NC 27713
  • Durham Public Library – Southwest Regional Library, 3605 Shannon Rd., Durham, NC 27707
  • Durham Public Library – Stanford L. Warren Branch Library, 1201 Fayetteville Rd., Durham, NC 27707

▫      All Public Libraries in Durham County:

  • Orange County Public Library – Main Library, 137 W. Margaret Ln., Hillsborough, NC 27278
  • Orange County Public Library – Carrboro Branch (McDougle Middle School), 900 Old Fayetteville Rd., Chapel Hill, NC 27516

PUBLIC INFORMATION SESSIONS:  Triangle Transit will hold two Public Information Sessions on the DEIS in advance of the public hearings.

  • Tuesday, September 15, from 4-7 P.M. at the Friday Center in Chapel Hill, NC
  • Saturday, September 19, from 2-5 P.M. at the Durham Station Transportation Center at 515 W. Pettigrew Street, Durham, NC

Anyone desiring additional information may contact Natalie Murdock, Triangle Transit – Interim Manager for Communications and Public Affairs, Triangle Transit, Post Office Box 13787 RTP, NC 27709, by phone (919) 485-7569, or by email: nmurdock@gotriangle.org.

 

Transit Thursday – The College Edition

August 27, 2015

Welcome back! We hope the beginning of your fall semester is getting off to a wonderful start!

Whether you’re an incoming freshman to a college in the Triangle or are returning for another great year, there’s a ton to see and do here and we’re ready to help you get there. Downtown Raleigh frequently opens up its streets to festivals and gallery walks. Music in Chapel Hill might be a must-do for you. If you’re hungry, chances are good Durham has the food you’re craving.

There are a lot of tips we could give you about using public transit. (We will and if you’re curious please ask us!) But there’s one thing in particular we want you to get excited about today.

GoPass. GoPass. GoPass. 

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If you take away one thing from this blog post that’s it. If you’re a student you should be riding transit in the area because it’s FREE. From getting to ride all of GoRaleigh routes for free, being able to hop on Chapel Hill Transit anytime, or having a GoPass to ride any system in the area anytime you want, public transit is the cheap, easy, and reliable means of getting around. Don’t worry about having a car on campus or figuring out where to park without getting a ticket.

Ride with us. Check out this list. Find your school. Get hooked up with transit.

The following schools will give you a GoPass:

NCSU

Duke

NCCU

Durham Tech

The following schools provide some form of free transportation:

UNC (Chapel Hill Transit is already free. If you live outside of its routes, you’re eligible for GoPass.)

Meredith College (Provides a U-Pass which gives you free access to all of GoRaleigh’s routes.)

If you have questions about GoPass or want to know more about how to ride, where to go, or tips for using transit please get in touch!

We’re on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram

 

Greenlights: August 2015 Issue

August 24, 2015

American Tobacco, a Best Work “SITE” for Commuters

What does your commute look like? Perhaps you’re a cyclist that enjoys the cool morning air as you ride in, or a transit rider that prefers reading your book, or connecting with your neighbors in route to work. Here in the Triangle, we know what a difference a high-quality commute can make in your day. This is why we participate in a national certification program that recognizes the best workplaces in the region for providing exemplary commuter benefits. This program has recently begun the certification of work sites to recognize places and spaces in our community that are creating more vibrant and more fulfilling job centers for us all.

American Tobacco Campus (ATC) is the first certified location in the Triangle to join as a Best Work Site for Commuters. ATC offers onsite amenities such as bike parking, transit amenities and comprehensive wayfinding signage to help direct visitors and staff to available resources.  Instead of just a worksite, American Tobacco has become a destination for staff. Incorporating multiple modes and making transportation easy through site planning and development, American Tobacco is leading the way and raising the bar for what a workplace should look like. Notably, as a property manager, ATC recently incorporated a transit GoPass for American Tobacco staff and their tenants’ employees.  The ATC GoPass is the worksite for approximately 4,000 employees who are now eligible for a free commute by bus!  The ATC GoPass program enables individuals to easily commute via the regional transit system with routes serving much of the Triangle stopping a block away at Durham Station.

Learn more about becoming a certified Best Workplace or Best Worksite location by contacting Mary Sell, Best Workplaces for Commuters Coordinator for the Triangle Region at msell@tjcog.org or 919-558-9400. Get more program information at www.bestworkplaces.org


Commuter Spotlight: Cyndi Booth

DRX Express Bus

 

“I just wanted send you a note of thanks for all of the work that you do with the GoTriangle buses. I have been taking the Durham-Raleigh Express (DRX) to work for about a week and a half and I LOVE it. My only regret is that I didn’t start sooner! What a win-win for all. I am helping preserve the environment, meeting new people and saving gas at the same time! AND – I don’t have to deal with the traffic so I am not grumpy when I get home (smile). Keep up the great work!” Happy TTA (now GoTriangle) Customer! Cyndi, City of Durham

 

Commuter Tips:

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What is a fampool and does it qualify for the Emergency Ride Home program and GoPerks?  A “fampool” is a group of family members that could have driven to work separately but decided to carpool instead.  The only qualification is that at least two of the people in the car be of driving age.  This means you can’t count dropping the kids off at daycare or school on the way to work unless your spouse, partner or other adult live-in relative is in the car too.  Your “fampool” must be reducing road congestion by at least one car.  This opens a world of possibilities for the FREE Emergency Ride Home and GoPerks incentive program.  It is advisable to have all employees in a carpool register for the Emergency Ride Home program.  Encourage your employer to register as well so that you all can track your trips and redeem prizes like those listed in this month’s list of winners.  Click on the links for more information about carpooling, Emergency Ride Home program and GoPerks.


GoPerks Sponsor Spotlight: RTI International

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Environmental sustainability is one of RTI International’s many areas of expertise and practice.  We are dedicated to improving the human condition through our work and within our organization.  Supporting the GoPerks program was a logical extension of our efforts internally to promote a more sustainable community and act as a model for others.

We have also partnered with GoTriangle to establish vanpools for our employees and provide them with subsidies for using mass transit. For employees who choose to bike, we offer a number of amenities to make biking to work an easy option such as showers in the buildings and convenient bike racks.  For electric vehicle owners, we have installed charging stations on campus.  We recognize that employee commutes represent a portion of our overall greenhouse gas emissions as outlined in our sustainability reporting, and we seek to further promote alternative commuting methods which reduce this environmental impact.


GoPerks sponsors …

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This month’s GoPerks winners are…..

Nick Baldino – Cisco – Durham Bulls 2 ticket special

Andy Throgmorton – Digitalsmiths – Cary’s Amphitheatre 2 ticket special

David Matesanz – Duke – $25 Faire Restaurant Gift Card

Mirta Mihovilovic – Duke – $10 Dickey’s Barbecue Pit Gift Card

Julian Xie – Duke – $10 The Oxford Restaurant Gift Card

Holly Leddy – Duke – $10 Only Burger Gift Card

Chandi Quigley – Duke – $10 Saladelia Café Gift Card

Elisa Arevalo Perez – Hazen and Sawyer – $10 Mura at North Hills Gift Card

Kendra Bridges – NC DOT – $5 Cameron Village Gift Card

Pamela Taylor – NC Legislature – $10 Cuban Revolution Gift Card

Kerry White – Parsons Brinckerhoff – Durham Bulls 2 ticket special

Tim Falco – Pfizer – $5 Cameron Village Gift Card

Terry Burns – Pfizer – Cary’s Amphitheatre 2 ticket special

Donna Schaeffer – City of Raleigh – Cary’s Amphitheatre 2 ticket special

Amanda Carroll – State Employees’ Credit Union – $10 Shop Downtown Raleigh Gift Card

Barbara Massey – UNC – $25 Johnny Carino’s Gift Card

Christine Stachowicz – UNC – Durham Bulls 2 Ticket Special

Desere’ Cross – UNC – Durham Bulls 2 ticket special

Elizabeth Kunreuther – UNC – $25 Cameron Bar & Grill Gift Card

Ed Purchase IV – UNC – $5 Tobacco Road Sports Café Gift Card

Ed Purchase IV – UNC – Cary’s Amphitheatre 2 ticket special

Janet Stevens – UNC Health Care – $5 Cameron Village Gift Card

Krista Latta – UNC – Durham Bulls 2 ticket special

Lindis Chetwynd – UNC – $5 Only Burger Gift Card

Lori DelNegro – UNC – $10 Mellow Mushroom Gift Card

Michael McKay – UNC – $50 Medlin Davis Cleaners Gift Card

Nely Dicheva – UNC – $10 Café Carolina Gift Card

Nely Dicheva – UNC – $10 Café Carolina & Bakery – Cameron Village Gift Card

Peter Chow – UNC – $10 Sweet Frog – Chapel Hill Gift Card

Peter Chow – UNC – Durham Bulls 2 ticket special

Phyllis Lee – UNC – $10 Café Carolina & Bakery – Cameron Village Gift Card

Rupali Aggarwal – UNC- $10 Brixx – Cameron Village Gift Card

Sara Tinkham – UNC – Cary’s Amphitheatre 2 ticket special

Sara Levinson – UNC – $25 Zinda Restaurant Gift Card

 

A huge thank you to all of our GoPerks riders, making the Triangle better one trip at a time!

 

 

 

Two Link Tuesday

August 18, 2015

Earlier today, GoDurham posted an article citing the Durham and Chapel Hill area as having the 3rd largest decrease in commutes by car in the nation!

We have to say… we’re pretty proud.

Redesigned GoDurham Bus

This also made us think more deeply about the changes that have occurred in the area to cause such a change. We did some research and have a few ideas we think are contributing to the Triangle, specifically Durham and Chapel Hill, becoming less car-centric.

City Lab did a great rundown on the subject. Though most of the country still relies on cars to get around, they took a microscope to the cities where this trend is on the decline. From cities with healthy transit systems to college towns with lots of foot traffic, they break down the numbers for us.

There’s also a shift among younger generations towards working and living where alternative means of travel are accessible. APTA, the American Public Transportation Association, noticed this and has stated in reports that,

Millennials are multimodal, they choose the best transportation mode (driving, transit, bike, or walk) based on the trip they are planning to take. Communities that attract Millennials have a multitude of transportation choices, as proven by Millennial hotspots, popular zip codes where residents have self-selected into a multi-modal lifestyle.

No matter the reasons, we’re thrilled to see the driving culture in the area changing and we’re so thankful to all of our riders on GoDurham, Chapel Hill Transit, GoTriangle, GoRaleigh, and C-Tran for helping to create that change.

Two Link Tuesday

August 11, 2015

Today’s Two Link Tuesday is being overtaken by #TeleworkTuesday!

Teleworking is an often overlooked method of cutting down driving, reducing rush-hour traffic, and saving money on transit. Here at GoSmart, we encourage our employees to take a day or two each week to work at home or their local coffee shop instead of coming into the office.

Image of a computer, coffee cup, and notebook on a table. The note reads "You can do it! - Coffee"

 

Our social media specialist, Eleanor Hawthorne, shares her #TeleworkTuesday view including some words of inspiration from her coffee. (Taken at a favorite local coffee shop, Brew, in Raleigh.)

In addition to all the benefits of not driving, teleworking offers a variety of perks. You can choose your own working environment, work in a coffee shop and keep that caffeine high going all day long, exercise during lunch without being seen by coworkers in your bike shorts, etc. For some people, getting to work out of the office enables them to really get in the zone and not out tasks that are difficult to complete when busy with meetings or unexpected requests.

And since we still really love Two Link Tuesday… here are a couple of links to help you kickstart your telework days.

12 Tips to Stay Healthy While Working From Home

Harvard Business Review Looks at the Increase in Productivity When Employees Work at Home

Where are your favorite telework spots? What are your favorite aspects of teleworking? Tag your photos on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook with #TeleworkTuesday and you may win some swag from us!

Two Link Tuesday

August 4, 2015

Today’s Two Link Tuesday we give you 2×2 of the transit link goodness. So 4 links. We’re giving you four links but that kills the alliteration.

National Night Out Logo

First up:tonight is National Night Out. Don’t miss this opportunity to meet some neighbors and help make your community better connected.

In transportation news… the senate has passed a new bill.

Though we’re proud of all parts of the Triangle, this Tuesday shoutout goes to Durham. If you’re a creative you may agree with us.

Lastly, banning cars. This neighborhood in South Korea banned cars for two whole months. Read more on Vox to find out what the residents thought about it.

What transit news has caught your eye this week? Share it with us in the comments!

Transit Thursday

July 23, 2015

Today In Transit

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We do a lot of the reading, research, and digging to gather together articles and ideas surrounding transit so that you don’t have to. Here are a few of the interesting things we found today;

Roads made of plastic? Could be.

The possibility of a “Bike-Autobahn” coming to Munich.

Friendly reminder: Our very own GoTriangle will be adding service to Perimeter Park on August 16th!

“Istanbul Chooses People Over Cars”

Speaking of people… Calgary’s model for pedestrian safety.

 

What articles and topics are you reading up on today? Share your favorites with us in the comments!

 

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