MDOT’s Commuter Choice Maryland Partner Program to Recognize Maryland Employers
The Maryland Department of Transportation’s (MDOT) Commuter Choice Maryland program is seeking to partner with state and local organizations, nonprofits and private sector companies across Maryland for its new Commuter Choice Maryland Partner Program.
Through the program, Commuter Choice Maryland partners with organizations to help them promote commuter benefits, and also recognizes employers across the state who are leaders in promoting alternative commuting options and benefits. These partners are helping Maryland achieve important goals such as, reduced traffic congestion, cleaner air and fewer greenhouse gas emissions, as well as increased economic opportunity.
“Commuter options such as transit, carpools, vanpools, biking, walking and teleworking are all important elements in our toolbox to reduce congestion, grow our economy and improve the quality of life for all Marylanders,” said MDOT Secretary Greg Slater. “Partnerships between MDOT, employers and their workers are critical to achieve these goals. The new Commuter Choice Maryland Partner Program will help us forge these partnerships and celebrate the success stories we’re seeing every day.”
Maryland organizations, agencies, businesses, and public/private entities who partner through the Commuter Choice Maryland Partner Program will receive benefits including:
- Complimentary guided support - Commuter Choice Maryland representatives can support business organizations and provide online tools and resources.
- Custom Transportation Plan and Employee Travel Behavior Surveys - Commuter Choice Maryland can assist employers with identifying and planning for employees’ transportation needs. They can also help with an employee survey to better understand employee travel behavior and potential mode shifts.
- Featured Success Story – Commuter Choice Maryland can highlight and feature success stories for best practices on the Commuter Choice Maryland website, newsletter(s), and on social media.
- Webinar Spotlight – Commuter Choice Maryland webinars provide opportunities to share best transportation practices and showcase success stories, potentially highlighting your business as a Commuter Choice Maryland Partner with as many as 7,500 other businesses and commuters.
- Recognition – Commuter Choice Maryland can help recognize partner organization successes.
Other benefits of Commuter Choice Maryland can include access to the Maryland Commuter Tax Credit program, available to employers who provide employees with certain options and incentives.
Looking at the challenges of the past year with the COVID-19 pandemic, public transportation has been essential in keeping the State moving. Overall MDOT MTA ridership remains down about 60% as of early February, but bus ridership, which serves the one in three people in Baltimore without cars, has remained steady, and is down only 48%.
MDOT MTA and Commuter Choice Maryland would like to acknowledge the work of all frontline employees for keeping Maryland moving and safe. Thank you to all of these essential workers, your work and commitment has not gone unnoticed! Over the past month MDOT MTA has been able to vaccinate essential employees as part of Maryland’s Phase IC of vaccination. Follow MDOT MTA on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to see more frontline employee highlights and appreciation posts.
Spotlight on the Baltimore Metropolitan Council
The Baltimore Metropolitan Council (BMC) has found a way to increase staff retention and productivity, attract better-qualified applicants, and improve worker loyalty and morale through two cycling initiatives - Bike to Work Day and Love to Ride Central Maryland.
To learn more about how your business can benefit by implementing bike-friendly initiatives and to read BMC's full story, click here
Upcoming Webinar with the Baltimore Metropolitan Council
Commuter Choice Maryland is hosting a webinar with the Baltimore Metropolitan Council on April 28, 2021 at 12 pm EST. In this session, you will learn about the Baltimore Metropolitan Council's Love to Ride - Central Maryland Program, including their successes with increasing community engagement and getting more people to bike! Be sure to sign up to learn about valuable tools available and what your organization can do to promote
commutes through employer based encouragement programs!
Early Registration for Bike to Work Day 2021 is Now Open
After a year of unprecedented change, Commuter Connections
and the Washington Area Bicyclist Association (WABA) are excited to announce that registration for the 20th Annual Bike to Work Day (BTWD) event has opened. The event will take place on Friday, May 21, with pit stops in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia. The first 15,000 people to register and attend will receive a free t-shirt.
All pit stop locations will be taking safety measures in compliance with CDC guidelines to ensure participants and sponsors remain safe on the day of the event.
Precautions will include:
- Zero tolerance mask enforcement
- Food & beverage policy with no-contact tables and factory sealed goods
- Pre-selected check-in times for staggered arrival times, with 25-30 bicyclists per half an hour timeslot
- Social distance requirements including six-foot distancing, one-way traffic flow, hand sanitizer stations, and appropriate signage
Registration opens on April 15 for the Baltimore Region's Bike to Work event. They are gearing up for a week-long, socially-distanced cycling challenge throughout May. Last year's new Bike to Work Week format proved popular so they are continuing with region-wide bike shop pickups and a ride-when-you-can "non-schedule." To support Bike to Work they will be renewing the
year-long Love to Ride cycling encouragement and challenge program.
To find your local participating 2021 pit stops and plan your route, check out the Find Your Pit Stop map.
Rideshare Coordinator Spotlight: Jessica Charles-Allen, Anne Arundel County
Jessica Charles-Allen is the Transportation Demand Management (TDM) Specialist/ Rideshare Coordinator for Anne Arundel County. Gladys Hurwitz, with Commuter Choice Maryland, had the pleasure of interviewing Jessica about her experience working with commuters, what she enjoys most about her job, and what she loves about working with Commuter Choice Maryland.
“I would be motivated to try an alternative commute if I saved money and
To get in touch with Jessica and to learn more about how she can help you, please see her contact information below.
Email: [email protected]
To read the full interview with Jessica, click here
Did you know federal requirements will require you to be compliant with REAL ID by the October 1, 2021 deadline? Having a REAL ID compliant driver’s license or ID card will be necessary to board commercial aircraft or gain access to federal facilities.
To be considered REAL ID compliant, you must have the required documents on file with the Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration (MDOT MVA). To find out if you are Real ID compliant, visit our REAL ID Lookup Tool. Customers are encouraged to make an appointment on the MDOT MVA website, and after collecting documentation visit a local
branch to become REAL ID compliant.
All Maryland residents will eventually be required to carry the REAL ID driver’s license or identification card with the star in the upper right hand corner. If you are a frequent traveler this will become especially important after the October 1, 2021 REAL ID deadline. After October, those customers still holding the blue and white Maryland card will need to bring their passport to prove identity – even on domestic flights. If you do travel frequently or
visit federal facilities, you can make an appointment at MDOT MVA to submit your documents and get your REAL ID. There is a $20 fee associated and the expiration date on your license will remain the same.
Transit App Accessibility
When people think of accessibility in transit, they often think of physical accessibility, like ramps and curb cuts for people using wheelchairs or to allow for step-free boarding on buses. However, accessibility extends to the digital realm, which has become even more important during the pandemic with reduced schedules and touch-free fares. Through MDOT Maryland Transit Administration’s Inclusive Transportation Planning program, colleagues from the National
Federation of the Blind (NFB) conducted a technology “walk audit” that assessed the usability of the Transit and CharmPass applications. Staff reviewed these two apps using screen readers on two separate operating systems: Android and IOS.
This review provides a glimpse into passengers’ needs. While hundreds of thousands of rides a year are planned or paid for using the CharmPass or Transit apps, these technology solutions can be challenging to navigate visually. Feedback includes commentary on buttons not being labeled, and on Transit app, electric scooter information not presented in an accessible way. As a result of these efforts, MDOT MTA worked with the vendors to update the apps
To learn more about MDOT MTA's Inclusive Transportation Planning program, contact Teddy Krolik, [email protected]. Learn more about the National Federation of the Blind and their work at nfb.org.
*Pictured above: Jaime McKay, transportation planner at MDOT MTA, and Karl Belanger, Nonvisual Accessibility Analyst at NFB, at the National Federation of the Blind's Jernigan Institute in Baltimore, Maryland.
Tips of the Quarter:
Dos and Don’ts of Virtual Meetings
- Lighting – make sure source of light is in front of you to avoid looking like a silhouette
- Camera Position – situate your computer higher than eye level to avoid the “up the nostril” shot
- Frame – try to fill the frame with your head and shoulders visible, avoiding cutting off your head
- Background – do a background check, opting for darker backgrounds and avoiding windows
- Microphone – mute your mic when you are not speaking or presenting to cut down on background noise
All MDTA facilities are now all-electronic (cashless)! Motorists pay all electronic (cashless) tolls via E-ZPass® or Video Tolling. The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) has been an industry leader by instituting all-electronic tolling at the Intercounty Connector
(ICC)/MD 200 in 2011, the I-95 Express Toll Lanes (ETL) in 2014, the Francis Scott Key (I-695) and Thomas J. Hatem Memorial bridges (US 40) in 2019 and the William Preston Lane Jr. Memorial (Bay) Bridge (US 50/301), Baltimore Harbor Tunnel (I-895), Fort McHenry Tunnel (I-95), the John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway (I-95) and Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial/Senator Thomas “Mac” Middleton Bridge (US 301) in 2020.
Learn more about E-ZPass and get your transponder today by clicking the button below.
For the first time ever, the Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration’s (MDOT MVA) Highway Safety Office is launching an all-encompassing highway safety campaign focused on safe driving behaviors, aptly named Be the Driver. The animated campaign depicts common situations that drivers, riders, and pedestrians often face and illustrates each road users’ personal responsibility. The ads will be featured year-round on local television,
streaming music platforms, billboards, social media, and digital advertisement and be coupled with enforcement waves from state and local law enforcement agencies as part of a high visibility highway safety effort.
Learn more by clicking the button below.
The Greater Washington Partnership's The Capital COVID-19 Snapshot: Return to Work Survey
Don’t worry if you missed the webinar session with the Greater Washington Partnership (GWP) on February 10, 2021. The webinar recording is available here.
During this session employers learned about important tools available to help them plan for the return back into the office and what other employers in the region are planning. Full survey results are available on the GWP's website.
April 28, 2021 | 12 pm EST
In this session, you will learn about the Baltimore Metropolitan Council's Love to Ride - Central Maryland Program, including their successes with increasing community engagement and getting more people to bike! Be sure to sign up to learn about valuable tools available and what your organization can do to promote commutes through employer based encouragement programs!
The Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration’s (MDOT MVA) Highway Safety Office, in partnership with DRIVE SMART Virginia, is hosting the first ever Maryland Distracted Driving Summit virtually during the month of April. This virtual Summit is comprised of a series of 18 webinars, each will require a separate registration. Speakers from across the country will be sharing their expertise in four different education tracks. The track
categories include: law enforcement, research/data, corporate/community strategies, and focused populations.
For more information on Commuter Choice Maryland, please contact us at 410-865-1100 or email [email protected]
. Representatives are available to assist Monday—Friday, 8:00 am—4:30 pm. Visit our website at: www.commuterchoicemaryland.com
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