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Zoo employees made smarter choices in October and won top smart commuter honor
November 7, 2016 (Denver, CO) – Denver Zoo announced today that it is top of its class in Way to Go’s annual "Go-Tober, Go-Team Company Challenge." The contest tasked 42 Denver Metro-area companies, with at least 100 employees, to get as many of their employees as possible to commute to work using alternative transportation at least four times in October. All of the companies were broken into four categories, determined by their location in Regional Transportation District (RTD) service level areas, and Denver Zoo won its category, “Suburban Superheroes.”
Now in its second year, Go-Tober is presented by Way to Go, a regional partnership between the Denver Regional Council of Governments (DRCOG) and a dedicated group of seven Transportation Management Associations (TMAs). Employees of participating companies registered on MyWayToGo.org/Go-Tober. All companies’ efforts were tracked with an “effort index” which equalized the participation playing field between small and large companies. That number was calculated by dividing the number of company participants by the square root of two times the number of company employees.
Denver Zoo was up to the task and its employees saved 1.9 tons of carbon emissions and nearly $2,500 in gas over the last month by using methods such as biking, carpooling and riding the bus to get to work. For winning the top prize, the Zoo won $7,500 in paid media marketing. Some of its employees will also win individual awards, as well.
“We are committed to continually improving our practices in order to reduce our environmental footprint. Taking alternative transportation is just one way that everyone can help,” says Denver Zoo Sustainability Coordinator Shaina Aguilar.
The total commuter miles tracked during the Go-Tober challenge equaled 399,712 miles, which is comparable to traveling from Los Angeles to New York City 143 times. Commuters burned a total of 2,985,928 calories, equivalent to nearly 7,100 pumpkin spiced lattes (at 420 calories per drink w/ whipped cream). In addition, commuters saved time, money and helped reduce air pollution. Commuters saved some $102,128 in travel costs and reduced carbon monoxide emissions by 112 tons.
“This campaign offers employers a turn-key program to promote smart commute choices,” said Steve Erickson, Director of Marketing and Communications for the Denver Regional Council of Governments. "Denver Zoo really led the way by encouraging its staff to try smarter and less stressful modes of transportation. We couldn’t be more pleased with the results.”
For a complete list of companies that Denver Zoo competed against employers and to see the final results, check out the Go-Tober leaderboard, located here.