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Breakfast of (Commute Trip Reduction) Champions!

On March 7, together with Commute Seattle, we celebrated the efforts of employers participating in the city’s Commute Trip Reduction (CTR) program during the fourth annual Champions Celebration breakfast. The CTR program awards employers who demonstrate high engagement and innovative tactics in their transportation programs.

This year the city recognized 124 employers, including Google and The Seattle Times who received ?“platinum level”? recognition – the City’s highest.

Performance & Innovation

The theme of the event was “Performance and Innovation,” but the word of the day was “challenge.” It’s no secret that traffic and congestion in downtown Seattle have grown and will continue to present many challenges for commuters as the city expands.


Keynote speaker, Governor Christine Gregoire | Image via


Keynote speaker Christine Gregoire, CEO of Challenge Seattle and Former Governor of Washington State and featured speaker Shefali Ranganathan, Deputy Mayor, City of Seattle both charged the attendees with taking these challenges head on through creativity, innovation, and perhaps most importantly, partnerships.


Image by Commute Seattle via


Gregoire warned, “we can’t build our way out of our region’s transportation problems,” while highlighting how her work with Challenge Seattle and its leadership actively seeks to develop solutions from the public and private partnerships. Citing examples from Challenge Seattle’s Mobility Innovation Center  partnership with the University of Washington (think, drones to assist with traffic!) she asked the champions, “how can we use innovation and partnership to improve transportation for those outside of the city core?”


Image by Commute Seattle via


Ranganathan acknowledged that Seattle has some work to do on traffic while asserting the City is “rewriting the playbook on how we get around” to support economic growth more sustainably. Just few weeks ago, SDOT and Commute Seattle announced the results of the most recent mode split report for Center City, showing a reduction in both the rate and estimated number of workers commuting via driving alone. Results show only 25% drive alone, with others turning at significantly higher numbers to transit and other non-drive alone options.

Ranganathan applauded attendees’ efforts saying, “this is working because you are working with the city.”


Image by Commute Seattle via


The event also featured insightful case studies on CTR best practices by Karen Aliabadi, Chief Human Resources Strategist at Delta Dental of Washington, and Leya Barr, Senior Manager of Facilities at Impinj. Moving your entire company from Northgate (Delta Dental) or Fremont (Impinj) to the City core, while mitigating commuting impacts is no small feat.

Both women noted that engaging employees early in the decision-making process and leveraging support from key leadership helped reduce their drive-alone commutes to a fraction of their former rates.


And the winners are…

Top performers who achieved the lowest rate of driving alone in their network or neighborhood group, received Platinum Awards:



The CTR Program currently partners with 270 of Seattle’s largest employers citywide to work towards multimodal commuting solutions.


Find more information on this year’s winners,? here!?

Get your employer to participate!