TDM101: How property managers can encourage active transportation

Posted by Rachel Karitis on 5/24/18 2:53 PM

Turning the tides toward sustainable habits via transportation demand management requires buy-in from so many different parties.

There's the corporate workplace environment, where employees make choices based on how large of a transit benefit they receive, if there are shuttles available, or if they are given the option for subsidized parking instead. There's also the cities themselves, which can add regulations to force building owners to encourage more sustainable travel and potentially to remove the absurdities of minimum parking requirements.

But then, there's you: the property manager. What if you actually want to help not because the city requires you to but because you believe in sustainable habits and happier residents? We've got some easy-to-implement suggestions for you!

Add bike facilities

This can go beyond bike parking, although that's a great start. Some apartments take things up a notch, making sure the bike parking is covered and secure in the event of weather-related activity. A really next-level idea? Providing free or reduced-price bike maintenance, encouraging group bike rides for the community, or hosting safety seminars for newbies to feel comfortable trying something new.

Bikes at bike stand

These changes are relatively cheap compared to other luxury apartment amenities, and they can even count toward LEED certification to show off how sustainable your building is. More importantly, they make your residents happy — which is what you're looking for to retain them and make your property the one they choose year over year.

Provide subsidized transit

The idea of subsidizing transit is usually associated with an employer program, but it can apply to your residential building as well! Providing some form of incentive to try new services that aren't a single-occupancy car can be easy, whether it's raffling off a free bikeshare membership or encouraging a discount code for UberPOOL or Lyft Line.

Many apartments, particularly those who aren't as connected to the urban core, also offer shuttles as a way to get residents to the nearest transit station. This allows people the freedom to live car-free while confident they'll be able to get where they need to go.

Advertise your options

Make it easy to select the possible transportation alternatives by putting the information as many places as possible. If you've got a shuttle, let people know! If there's a bikeshare station nearby, make sure you have signage! We recommend TransitScreen (obviously) to showcase all the options and ensure they're as accessible as possible.

We also suggest sending out emails to your residents letting them know what's available, or posting messages wherever you normally do that to encourage continued usage. Have a contest to see who can bike to work the most days in a month! Make it fun.


Topics: TDM, Real Estate