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Compensation & Benefits

Why has Traffic Congestion Dropped in Seattle?

Why has Traffic Congestion Dropped in Seattle?

Author: Larissa Lazaro

You would think that when a major business district like Downtown Seattle experiences an increase in jobs bringing more commuters to the city center, you would also see an increase in drive-alone traffic.

Not so, according to survey results reported by Commute Seattle, a not-for-profit Transportation Management Association which, in addition to collecting commuting trends data, also manages a program for employers to maximize use of transit services for employees, as well as providing employer resources about commuter benefits.

According to their data, drive-alone commuting dropped to 25% from 30% the previous year. You may or may not know, but drive-alone commuting is the number one reason cause for traffic congestion across the country.

This result reveals the biggest decrease in single-occupancy vehicle commuters since they began collecting data in 2010. Meanwhile, transit ridership among downtown Seattle workers jumped to 47%.

A variety of factors to manage traffic flow worked together to maximize all of the region’s transportation options. The results of the recent reports were attributed to the Seattle Department of Transportation’s Commute Trip Reduction Program, a concentrated  effort between the city, state and Seattle employers to provide guidance on the choices of transportation modes including, walking, cycling, transit, carpooling, and telecommuting.

When city, state, and transportation agencies work together with employers to manage travel options for commuters, the results benefit everyone. We’re proud that commuter benefits continue to play a crucial part in these positive trends.

In addition to reducing congestion on our roadways, a pre-tax commuter benefit program allows employees to reduce their commuting costs by up to 40%, while employers save 7.65% on payroll taxes.

Larissa Lazaro is the Director of Sales at Commuter Benefit Solutions. With more than 12 years of experience in employee benefits, Larissa has been leading the Field Sales Team in helping large companies stay ahead of their competitors by offering a multitude of commuter benefit solutions to attract and retain top talent. Larissa periodically collaborates with the Commuter Benefits Solutions blog.

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