University of Pittsburgh
May 24, 2006

Pitt Named to 2006 List of "Best Workplaces for CommutersSM From Colleges and Universities" by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

University meets National Standards of Excellence for the second time in nine months
Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH-The University of Pittsburgh was named by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as one of the "Best Workplaces for CommutersSM (BWC) From Colleges and Universities," marking the second time in nine months the University's commuter efforts have been honored nationally by meeting the EPA's National Standards of Excellence. Last August, the University was named to the Best Workplaces for Commuters list by BWC.

"We are delighted that the commuter benefits we provide to Pitt faculty, staff, and students have been recognized by the EPA," said Joe Phillips, assistant vice chancellor for business. "Not only do we provide the University community with a variety of ways to save time and money in their commute to campus, but in doing so we are able to be good neighbors to residents and businesses in Oakland by reducing traffic, as well as being good global citizens, by providing commuting options that are environmentally friendly. We, in turn, want to thank our partners, the Port Authority of Allegheny County (PAT), CommuteInfo, and Lenzner Coach Lines for enabling us to provide this high level of service to our commuters."

According to the BWC Web site, "The colleges and universities on this exclusive list offer an outstanding commuter benefits package that saves these institutions money, reduces parking demand, and improves the quality of life for their employees and students, and the residents in their surrounding communities. …A place on the list distinguishes these institutions as environmental leaders that improve air quality, save energy, and reduce traffic congestion in their communities."

Pitt was lauded for commuter benefits, including a free shuttle service for faculty, staff, and students to adjacent neighborhoods and throughout campus; fare-free access to PAT's mass transportation system of more than 200 routes per day; a parking discount for registered carpools; pre-tax payroll deduction for on-campus parking permit holders; free parking six times per year when a registered carpooler cannot use their pool to work; free vanpool parking; and free bike racks and registration for bicyclists.

Pitt employees also are offered ride-matching for carpools, vanpools, and bike pools as well as access to emergency rides home through CommuteInfo, a Southwestern Planning Commission program.

According to the BWC Web site, Best Workplaces for CommutersSM is an innovative, voluntary business-government program that distinguishes and provides national recognition to employers offering outstanding commuter benefits such as free or low-cost bus passes, strong telework programs, carpooling matching, and vanpool subsidies. Employers that meet the EPA's National Standard of Excellence in commuter benefits get on the list of Best Workplaces for Commuters-a fast-growing mark of excellence in environmental leadership. Through partnerships with public and private sector employers, Best Workplaces for Commuters is demonstrating that alternatives to drive-alone commuting such as transit, carpools, and teleworking are economically beneficial, yielding value to workers, employers, and our environment."

For more information, log on to www.bwc.gov/employ/universities.htm.

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5/25/06/tmw