(TOLEDO, Ohio) – A project nearly a year in the making has become reality. This month, TARTA and Commute with Enterprise announced the first vanpool – TARTA Share-A-Van – through the partnership.
“We’re very excited about this partnership with Commute with Enterprise and the Renaissance Toledo Downtown Hotel,” Stacey Clink, TARTA interim general manager said. “The vanpool program can help to fill a void to provide access to employment for those areas that are not accessible by public transit due to location or time.”
The Renaissance Toledo Downtown Hotel is the first area employer to test the program with 12, first shift employees.
“At Renaissance we work to eliminate barriers to success, and for some of our staff, the biggest barrier is transportation,” Matthew Siebert, people services manager at Renaissance said. “It is impossible to show up to work and deliver outstanding experiences for guests when the struggle of getting
to work causes undue stress,”
Here’s how it works: Commute with Enterprise works with local employers to identify employees who live in close proximity to each other and work the same shift to see whether Share-A-Van is a viable option. If it is, the group selects two drivers, pick up and drop off locations, and they’re ready to go. This applies to employees who work in the TARTA footprint (Maumee, Ottawa Hills, Rossford, Sylvania, Sylvania township, Toledo, Waterville) but live elsewhere and those who live and work within TARTA limits.
“Commute with Enterprise provided the tool we needed to overcome the roadblock of transportation, and TARTA’s support is invaluable.
This van pool will provide individuals reliable transportation to and from work, setting them up for success each day,” Siebert adds.
TARTA absorbs 50% of the cost through a grant offered by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and the employer and employees make up the difference. In the case of the Renaissance, after gas and taxes, workers are looking at about $18 to $20 a month.
“We are excited to be a part of developing economic growth in our region. As we proceed in the future to transform public transit into a more viable, robust and efficient system, the vanpool program will continue to complement the service provided by TARTA,” Clink said.
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