About the Commute Trip Reduction (CTR) Law
Washington State’s Commute Trip Reduction (CTR) Law was passed by the Legislature in 1991 with goals to improve air quality, reduce traffic congestion, and reduce the consumption of petroleum fuels through employer-based programs that encourage the use of alternatives to driving alone. Alternatives include riding the bus or train, carpooling, vanpooling, bicycling, walking, working a compressed work week or teleworking.
The Washington State Legislature passed the CTR Efficiency Act (.pdf 123kb) in 2006 and revised the goals for trip reduction; each city and county must reduce drive alone trips at major worksites by 10% by 2011. Local jurisdictions have revised their CTR ordinances and published new CTR goals for employers.
The law requires major employers to develop and implement an employee commute program to reduce the number and length of drive-alone commute trips made to the worksite. Local jurisdictions (cities and counties) implemented ordinances to define how the law would apply to worksites in their area. Local jurisdictions are required to provide training and technical assistance for employers.
The CTR Law is working
The CTR program benefits our state’s transportation system, economy, CTR participants and other drivers on the road.
Between 2007 and 2014:
- Employees at 966 CTR affected worksites reduced their drive-alone trip rate from 65.7 percent to 63.1 percent, representing a 2.6 percent decrease from the original rate. They left about 14,500 cars home at work every day, and commuted by other means such as bus, vanpool, train, walking, biking or teleworking, resulting in less traffic congestion.
- The average vehicle miles traveled per surveyed employee declined by 3.1 percent. The overall miles decreased by about 33 million miles annually. This results in a reduction of 1.6 million gallons of fuel, saving commuters $5.8 million in fuel expenditures. This translates into an annual greenhouse gas emission reduction of 14,700 tons, the equivalent of 79 rail cars of coal or the same effect as the amount of greenhouse gases held by 12,000 acres of forest.
Source: 2015 CTR Report To the Washington State Legislature.
To read more about the costs and benefits of the CTR Program, download the 2015 CTR Report To the Washington State Legislature. (721KB PDF)