Give it a try – Try Transit Month 2014

If you’re reading this post, you more than likely are well acquainted with transit in our area.

GoTriangle_TryTransit2014Oh you’re not? Well you’re in luck because it’s Try Transit Month! Running from September 3 through October 3, all transit agencies in the GoTriangle family is encouraging you to leave your car keys at the house and jump on board. Check out for complete schedule of events including, rider appreciation day and transit employee appreciation day. 

Here are 5 reasons why to try transit this month:

1.  Park-and-Ride. You don’t have to have a bus stop right outside your door  to take transit.  Find a park-and-ride lot close to home and leave the rest of your commute to the professionals.

2. 2 by 4 (wheels). If you prefer the wind in your hair and cycle to work or around town but the dog days of summer are making you consider driving, hold the phone. GoTriangle buses have AC, so you can still get in your exercise but leave the bulk of your ride to us.

3. Productivity for the win! With Triangle Transit routes now sporting new 4G wi-fi, you can answer emails or connect to online documents, before you even get to your desk.

4. Catch some extra zzzz. When you leave the driving to the professionals, you can get a little shut eye before you start your workday. Worried you’re going to miss your stop? Use TransLoc’s new Rider app and set alarms for when your bus arrives at your stop.

5. Extra Dough. I’m not talking about pie crust, I’m talking hard cash. If you have to pay to park on a regular basis, paying up to $6 round trip beats have to feed the meter every 2 hours or the steep daily parking deal. Treat yourself to dinner with your savings for the month. 


Try Transit Month isn’t just about getting you to try something different, we also want to give back to our communitiesfoodbank. Every Wednesday in the month of September, the GoTriangle family of transit services will hold Stuff The Bus food drives. Our friends at DATA are kicking off the month with their drive at Southpoint Crossing Kroger, 8AM to 5PM.  Drop off 3 or more cans of food for a chance at some sweet swag. 

Here are the dates for all of the food drives. All food drives benefit The Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina. 

  • September 10 – CTRAN, Stuff the Bus
  • September 17 – CAT, Stuff the Bus
  • September 24 – Triangle Transit Stuff the Bus

For more details on locations, please take a look at the Try Transit Month calendar

Instagram, Facebook, or Tweet us pictures of you giving transit a try. 

Happy Try Transit Month!



Transit Thursday (Friday): Making a Way with Transit

It’s #TransitThursday on a FRIDAY! We’re getting crazy in here but switching it up a little but but this guest post from our Communications Officer, Brad Schulz, was too good to wait till next week. So take a break, grab your mid-morning snack and let Brad tell you about a transit enthusiast, Frank. 


I recently had the pleasure meeting one of our faithful transit riders.  We’ll call him Frank.  Frank uses transit to get from Chapel Hill to Hillsborough.  When he’s not heading to the Senior Center, he’s running errands.  All on transit.

I met Frank at a recent public meeting on bus expansion in Orange County.  The meeting was about 10 miles north of Hillsborough and the last transit stop.  He listened and talked and asked questions about new service the county hopes to provide with its local share of the vehicle registration fee dedicated for transit.   I asked him how he got to the meeting and he told me he rode the bus to Hillsborough, and then hitched a ride to the meeting because there is no rural transit service to northern Orange County.

I left and headed back to Hillsborough and there was Frank, hoping to catch a ride back to Carrboro.  I stopped and offered to help.  As I drove to take him home, he told me how transit benefits him in his daily life, what it means to have those connections and that the county needs to do more to provide service for those who don’t drive or choose not to.

The next week, Frank was at another public meeting on bus service, this time in Efland.  He used transit as far as he could, then got a ride to the meeting.  As I was leaving, I offered him a ride.  He said he didn’t need to go to Carrboro, but if I’d take him to Durham, he’d make connections downtown to get to Chapel Hill.  He said the scheduled Triangle Transit bus at Durham Station would get him to Carrboro.   He again told me he’s made transit a part of his life and it works for him.

There are thousands of Franks every day that transit helps.  Transit can and does make the difference.  Statistically, Orange and Durham counties have a high percentage of transit use in the state.  Voters in both counties approved a one-half cent sales tax for new and expanded bus service.  Both counties are completing plans for new service in 2015 and are looking ahead to other services as the need grows.

Yesterday, the Triangle Transit Board of Trustees gave final approval to a new express route from Hillsborough to Durham.  Once it starts running, we’ll work on expanding it to Mebane.  Also, Orange County maymake a decision in September on new services it will provide through Orange Public Transportation, serving areas that Frank can’t currently get to by bus.

As our region grows, so will our transit system, providing more chances for us to all take a lesson from Frank and use it in our day to day trips. We owe it to ourselves to continue to support the effort so we can continue to make the most of the life we’ve come to enjoy in the Triangle.


 BradBrad Schulz is Triangle Transit’s Communications Officer. When he’s not sharing the good news on transit, he is attending public meetings and helping with public outreach. 


Greenlights: December 2013 Issue


Welcome to the December issue of GreenLights!

GreenLights is your newsletter highlighting the outstanding employers and commuters across the Triangle. We’re happy to present two new encouraging examples of smart commuting and how a company can stand behind a strong commuter benefits program.

Please let us know if you are interested in being featured. Email us at

Company Greenlight: Tipping our hat to Red Hat

log-in_corner_shadowmanAfter forming in 1993, Red Hat quickly became the world’s leading provider of open source solutions using a community-powered approach to provide reliable and high-performing cloud, virtualization, storage, Linux®, and middleware technologies.[1]Twenty years later Red Hat moved its headquarters bringing approximately 400 employees into the heart downtown Raleigh. Continue reading

GreenLights – September Issue


GreenLights is your monthly newsletter highlighting the outstanding employers and commuters across the Triangle. Please let us know if you are interested in being featured. Email us at

Be on the lookout for the next GreenLights at the end of each month.

Now on to our September (September, went by so fast!) edition.

Commuter Spotlight – September 2013

Cycling for Ed McKim is more than a green commute to work.  It has become a lifestyle.  Most mornings he treks about eight to nine miles from Oberlin Road to Millbrook Exchange.  The trip takes about 30-40 minutes, depending on the traffic.  I was first introduced to Ed McKim, a.k.a. RadicalEd through his phenomenal video of his daily trip on YouTube.   McKim says,  “On rainy days I may drive. I have been riding in to work almost 5 days a week since February or March of this year.”  He has been riding his bike to work as an alternative to driving since 2008.  He started out biking off and on one or two days a week.  He got a road bike in 2007, and started working at an outdoor gear shop.  A lot of cyclists were regulars at the store, and the spark was lit.  Working at a bike shop in Chapel Hill, he was completely blown away by a Durham cyclist who biked to his job in Chapel Hill. The ride was 17 miles each way, every day, no matter the weather..  So his passion for cycling became a lifestyle, and it is his favorite way to commute.  Yes, he drives if the weather is bad and he has registered with the GoTriangle free Emergency Ride Home program in case of emergencies or if he gets sick at work.  But, he certainly has enjoyed the few times he has gotten caught in the summertime afternoon rain.  He says “sometimes it is a great way to cool off.”  He’s also logging his commutes in SharetheRideNC so he can see his gas savings, emissions reductions, and even calories burned.

Some people want to bike to work but don’t because they need help finding safe paths and greenways or other info.  GoTriangle’s  got it covered! Check out the list of maps for local greenways and bicycle trails  and other cyclist resources.  You will find tons of information on cycling including NC laws and links to local biking groups.

You don’t have to ride 17 miles each way like RadicalEd’s friend to start out your new commute.  Try riding your bike to the corner store Sunday morning for the paper instead of driving or ride to your bus stop, or from your stop to your office.   Be like Ed –  start out small and then try one or two days a week.  You never know where it could lead.

Company Spotlight – TransLoc says to “Ride the Freakin’ Bus”

transloc logo
Every day we advocate for someone to make a small change.  After all, that is how it starts.  You have to take the first step to walk a mile.  That’s why we’re so excited to hear about a Raleigh company, TransLoc, initiating a policy to help employees get past the excuses and “ride the freakin’ bus.”  As a matter of fact the official name of the program is Ride the Freakin’ Bus.  It kind of says it all, right!?

If you have used any of the regions real-time feeds or bus prediction systems  like Triangle Transit’s “GoLive, ” to find out where your bus is and when it’s going to be at your stop you have used TransLoc’s products. Most bus riders are more familiar with their products than their name. Although TransLoc is a small firm  near NC State’s campus in Raleigh, they provide real-time info about bus systems via maps and text messaging to companies across the country. About a month ago, Transloc launched a policy called “Ride the Freakin’ Bus” requiring all employees to ride the bus at least twice a month.

TransLoc employees take transit

Daniel Flowe of TransLoc says they were motivated to start this program for two reasons. “First, we fundamentally believe in transit. We believe that transit benefits our community, our environment and our economy. We recognize that there is a deep and unfair stigma associated with transit, and that people need a push to try it for themselves and see that transit is the asset we know it is. We did our best to provide that push to our team, and to make it fun.” And everyone in the company has a personal interest in seeing transit successful. Flowe says, “We know that we can’t create a great product for transit unless we all ride transit. Weave already seen great insights from members at all levels of our organization just from one month of riding.” At the onset, most employees were very positive; some understandably complained. However, Flowe commented “It’s been fun to see how much more relaxed people are when they’ve ridden the bus in. They talk about how they didn’t realize how much stress their commute caused them and about how much they enjoy using that time productively rather than staring at the car in front of them”. Now that the buses can ride on the shoulder and pass traffic when it is slow or stopped, there is even more reason to try the bus during rush hour.

Some employees have opted to ride the bus more than the required two days a month.  Encouraging transit use, TransLoc started a friendly competition encourages transit use even more.   Last month’s winner logged 43 trips.  Way to go!

So as you ride the bus around the Triangle, look out for this fantastic group of people.  They will be sitting with you, making sure our GoLive system is giving accurate predictions, and if possible, making the system even better.  Give them a high five! They are making a difference. They made a change. Small changes really do matter.  For the employee that just does the minimum riding two days a month, they have reduced their commuting costs and carbon emission by 10%.  You can do it too.  Call 919 485-7433 or go online to to get help planning a trip, and find out more about how you can cruise past traffic just by taking the bus.

As Long as the Work Gets Done: Telecommute-gate 2013

Earlier this week, Yahoo’s CEO, Marissa Mayer, said the company would end their telework program this June. This move from a technology giant has sparked the debate over “work from home.” Was she right in banning employees to telecommute and have flex time? Is teleworking a commuter benefit? Is it a managerial style? Does telework kill productivity or make it possible for people to work? teleworkcat

Here’s what I have to say, as both a telework candidate and a manager. My current office space, as many are these days, is an open floor concept.  That means everyone has access to you at all times unless you aren’t physically at your desk. Sure you can put in headphones, but if you’re in a work groove and someone is standing by your desk, it’s hard to ignore them. Add to that a gang of meetings and sometimes it feels like you didn’t even make a dent into your to-do list. On the flip side, I’ve seen what the “butts in seats” mentality gets you – employees that are physically there but planning their vacation time or counting down the hours until 5pm.

Being “physically together” doesn’t automatically mean increased productivity.

As a manager, I see the value of teleworking, and luckily, my company does as well.   So do these people – Richard Branson, NY Times, and Technorati. It is a part of my style to make sure that my team has the space and time to work uninterrupted, whether that’s at 9am or 3am. That’s what teleworking provides – the ability to focus on work to the best of your capabilities in the environment that fosters your best work.  That’s not always in a cube.

But here’s the big rub that people aren’t really talking about – teleworking reduces traffic and greenhouse gas emissions!  That’s what we’re all about here at GoTriangle. We want people’s commutes to be as sustainable as possible. Last year more than 71,000 people pledged to work from home at least one day during  Telework Week (March 4-8, 2013), which saved $5,651,890 on commuting costs, kept 3,453 tons of pollutants from the air and resulted in 6,413,006 fewer miles being driven, according to Mobile Work Exchange, the business that supports the effort.

Does this mean that people need to be remotely working the entire time? If that doesn’t work for them or the company, maybe not. There is something to gain from office musings and random brainstorming sessions. It comes down to having the option and making policies that work for your team or company. It shouldn’t be just black and white.

Next week, yes during Telework Week, I want Marissa to think about if being “physically together” is so important to Yahoo’s goals or should she embrace having some workplace flexibity? How she response to this outcry from employees and the public will decide if Yahoo will remain a major internet player or go the way of Netscape. 

Other articles of interest: 

Working from Home: The End of Productivity or The Future of Work? (

4 Reasons Marissa Mayer No-Work-At-Home Policy is an Epic Fail (

UNC wants to hear from you! 2011 Transportation Forums

It’s that time again, time for the UNC Transportation Forums:

Hospital Forum:

Monday, October 17, 2011
12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Children’s Hospital Lobby


University Forum in New Location:

Monday, October 24, 2011
11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Carolina Union Room 3206 A & B

The focus will again be on Q & A with decision-makers.

Bicycle/Pedestrian, Triangle Transit, P.A.R.T., Chapel Hill Transit, Registration, Construction Impacts, Safety, 5-Year Plan, Zipcar, Zimride and CAP issues may all be addressed. We will also be honoring our 2011 SmartCommute Challenge award winners. There will be a survey with room for questions and comments for those who can’t stay – and all who leave contact info will receive a response.

They’ll have giveaways and yummy snacks too. Folks who’ve Liked us or Follow us & bring the Entry Form posted on our FB or Twitter sites could to win a $20 gift card to Carolina Brewery.

Find us on Facebook at UNC Commuter Alternative Program and on Twitter at @UNCCAPPROGRAM