Virginia Tech cited as one of the best workplaces for commuters

BLACKSBURG, Va., May 22, 2006 – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has named Virginia Tech as one of the "Best Workplaces for Commuters" among colleges and universities.

For the first time ever, the EPA is releasing a national list of innovative college and university employers committed to improving air quality, saving energy, and reducing traffic congestion while improving quality of life for employees.

The "Best Workplaces for Commuters" list recognizes employers who offer outstanding commuter benefits for their employees. Virginia Tech was included for offering excellent commuter benefits such as the Commuter Alternatives Program’s Carpool and Bike, Bus, and Walk programs.

“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 Margo Oge, EPA’s director of the Office of Air Quality and Transportation. “By giving their employees these options, universities like Virginia Tech are helping to improve air quality, save energy, and reduce traffic congestion.”

Virginia Tech is one of 72 campuses across the nation designated as "Best Workplaces for Commuters." According to Oge, "these academic institutions distinguish themselves from the competition and demonstrate their environmental leadership by offering outstanding commuter benefits meeting EPA’s National Standard of Excellence. Together, the campuses on this list reduce the greenhouse gas, CO2, by over 300,000 metric tons a year--a valuable contribution toward addressing climate change. In addition, they are saving their employees $86 million in gasoline costs."

Virginia Tech is reducing CO2 by approximately 2,531 metric tons per year and saving its employees approximately $839,777 per year in gasoline costs.

Steve Mouras, Virginia Tech's director of Transportation, said “We're both pleased and proud that Virginia Tech has been named a 'Best Workplace for Commuters' among colleges and universities. In this time of increased commuting cost, we are working hard to offer a range of commuting options for our employees. It’s exciting to have our efforts acknowledged by the USEPA.”

See the complete list of Best Workplaces for Commuters among colleges and universities.

Founded in 1872 as a land-grant college, Virginia Tech is the most comprehensive university in the Commonwealth of Virginia and is among the top research universities in the nation. Today, Virginia Tech’s eight colleges are dedicated to quality, innovation, and results through teaching, research, and outreach activities. At its 2,600-acre main campus located in Blacksburg and other campus centers in Northern Virginia, Southwest Virginia, Hampton Roads, Richmond, and Roanoke, Virginia Tech enrolls more than 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries in 180 academic degree programs.