Campus: NORTHRIDGE -- July 7, 2006

CSUN Named One of the Best Workplaces for Commuters

Cal State Northridge has been named one of the nation's Best Workplaces for Commuters among colleges and universities by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The EPA issued a list last month recognizing 72 campuses that offer exceptional commuter benefits for their employees in an effort to improve both air quality and employee commutes. To qualify, employers must achieve the program's national standard of excellence by providing at least one primary commuter benefit, as well as three supporting benefits.

"We are pleased to recognize the efforts made by universities to provide commuter benefits that encourage employees to find alternative ways to commute to work, other than driving alone," said Marge Oge, EPA's Director of the Office of Air Quality and Transportation. "By giving their employees these options, universities like Cal State Northridge are helping to improve air quality, save energy and reduce traffic congestion."

The "Commuter Transportation Program" at CSUN offers employees alternative methods of transportation rather than driving alone. Through its public transit program, the university offers a monetary incentive for those employees who choose to commute to work by Metro bus or Metrolink train. A public transit subsidy gives employees a 60% discount off the cost of a public transit monthly pass or 10-trip tickets.

"Ridesharing is not just a money saver but also an air quality enhancer, which is an important part of CSUN's effort to demonstrate environmental leadership," said Astrid Logan, CSUN's Transportation Program Coordinator.

Some other commute alternatives that CSUN offers its employees are a vanpool program, a guaranteed one-way emergency ride for employees who use public transportation, assistance in finding carpooling partners and the options of telecommuting or a compressed workweek, depending upon department approval.

Best Workplaces for Commuters is a voluntary, business-government program that was initiated by the EPA in 2001. The program encourages employers to offer commuter benefits and incentives to reduce the number of miles driven by employees to and from work. It is the only EPA program specifically designed to reduce transportation-related greenhouse gases and fuel consumption by countering growth in vehicle travel.

Contact: Erin Richard, Carmen Ramos Chandler, (818) 677-2130

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