MIT Lincoln Laboratory's commuter program earns
2014 ECO Awards

Car and van pool services are recognized as Spotlight Award winners

On 26 March at Boston's Fenway Park during a celebration for the recipients of the 2014 Massachusetts Excellence in Commuter Options (ECO) Awards, MIT Lincoln Laboratory was one of four Massachusetts businesses honored with a Leadership in Commuter Options designation. This rating is awarded by MassCommute, a nonprofit organization of 11 Transportation Management Associations, to companies and institutions that successfully promote outstanding programs encouraging employees to use alternatives to drive-alone commuting. More than 150 businesses were recognized at the ceremony hosted jointly by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, MassCommute, and MassRIDES, the statewide travel options program.

Photo of the team that organizes Lincoln Laboratory's commuter programsThe Facility Services Department team that administers the commuter services program at Lincoln Laboratory is seen here with the ECO Awards the program earned in 2014 and one of the eight vanpool vehicles. From left to right are Jay Dolan, Richard Powers, Anna Maherakis, James Armao, and Don Holmes.

Lincoln Laboratory earned two Spotlight Awards, one each for its carpool and vanpool initiatives, and received a 2014 Pinnacle Award. Spotlight Awards acknowledge sustainable, cost-effective commuter programs that motivate employees to take advantage of transportation choices other than single-occupancy automobile travel. The Pinnacle Award recognizes a comprehensive program of commuter services.

The Laboratory's commuter programs are managed by the Facility Services Department and include an emergency-ride-home service and resources for bicycle commuters, in addition to the car and van pools. Currently, the Laboratory has 83 carpool groups and eight vanpools serving more than 200 people. To foster participation in the commuter options, the Laboratory offers incentives such as guaranteed parking for carpoolers and reduced public transportation passes. The team directing the Laboratory's growing commuter services program consists of James Armao, Richard Powers, and Anna Maherakis under the leadership of Don Homes, department head, Facility Services Department, and Jay Dolan, assistant department head.

As an employer with more than 1000 people commuting on Massachusetts' roadways, Lincoln Laboratory must comply with the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection's (MassDEP) Rideshare Regulation. The Laboratory is committed to helping the state decrease environmental impacts from automobiles' greenhouse gas emissions, improve air quality, and reach MassDEP's goal of "tripling non-car travel by 2030." Currently, 15.1 percent of Massachusetts commuters utilize non-car travel options.

"The Facility Services Department is honored to be recognized for our efforts in promoting greener trips, and we will continue to promote sustainable transportation initiatives by encouraging our employees to advance their personal and statewide goals for a healthy and cleaner environment," says Holmes.

This is not the first year that Lincoln Laboratory has been recognized with an ECO Award for its commitment to helping reduce traffic congestion and greenhouse-gas emissions. In 2013, it earned a Pacesetter Award, which has less rigorous qualifications than required for the Pinnacle Award. The Laboratory's bicycle commuters have also been first-place trophy winners in MassCommute's annual bike-to-work challenge.

Posted April 2014

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