Monday, 22 September 2008

In Town Without My Car Day

My company took part in In Town Without My Car Day today, organised by our local council as part of European Mobility Week. The idea is you try to avoid bringing your car to work and explore alternative means of transport. Bus fares have been reduced for the day to encourage more people to use public transport, and buses from the "park and ride" scheme are free.

I have been impressed by the number of people who have entered into the spirit of this, especially one colleague who spent more on a train ticket than she spends on petrol for the entire week normally, to make a journey which started and 6.30 am and took twice as long as driving! There are plenty of bikes parked in our lobby, too. Altogether, half the 48 people who came to our office today did so without using their car - and we saved as much CO2 as a 32inch TV would create if used for two hours per day for three years, about 75Kg.

Today's event is a great way to draw attention to the fact that it is possible to leave your car at home, but I'm not sure that anybody found their journey either quicker or cheaper by public transport. Bus fares here are pretty high and the service fairly patchy. I doubt whether many people will continue to travel in the way they did today - but at least it gets the debate going.

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