More Rochesterians carpool to work than you might think. According to the U.S. Census, 8 percent of workers in the region carpooled in 2013. That’s about 42,000 people. That’s more than take the bus to work.
That’s probably why Rochester Genesee Regional Transportation Authority is studying the idea of a “vanpool.” RGRTA would contract with an operator who has a fleet of SUVs or vans. A designated passenger would have possession of the van and pick up people on the way to work. There are typically 5 to 12 people in a vanpool.
In Dallas, passengers split the charge of $335 a month. The service picks up insurance and vehicle costs. There are also tax incentives for commuters.
The census shows long commutes are not an issue for Rochester carpoolers; it doesn’t take them much longer to get to work. But Rochester’s carpoolers are poor, as two-thirds earn less than $35,000. Only 8 percent of carpoolers don’t have a vehicle available, suggesting a family member may need the car or they want to save on gas and car maintenance. Many carpoolers work in education, health care, social services and the service industry, according to the census.
The census didn’t ask if carpoolers how much they have to pay for parking at work. That’s an issue for workers at downtown garages and the University of Rochester.
In a statement CEO Bill Carpenter said, “Transit agencies in the U.S. are finding that vanpool services can complement existing bus routes and expand transit services by offering a substitute method of travel to common destinations. The purpose of this study is to determine the feasibility of a vanpool program capable of linking commuters from similar origins to similar destinations throughout the Rochester area.”
Links of the Day:
– Assemblyman David Gantt’s bill would allow self-driving cars.
– This is what the new state senate boss is saying when he’s not saying anything.
– A Rochester charter school is under scrutiny for being too white and too middle class.
– Buffalo only gives its schools $70 million. (Meanwhile, Rochester, a smaller city, is required by law to give its schools $119 million.)
– Rochester is slated to get a “pedal tour” this summer. It’s a bike party bus thing.
– Syracuse is getting a dinner-movie theater. (I wonder if this would work at Midtown.)