New employer incentives available to help workers 'go green' - Metropolitan Planning Council

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New employer incentives available to help workers 'go green'

MPC is helping pilot a new Commute Options Program in metro Chicago, so that more businesses and workers can realize the benefits of reduced commutes.

MPC hiring for a new position that will guide these programs

The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning and stakeholders advancing the Chicago Climate Action Plan are bringing new incentives to the table for both City of Chicago and regional employers to help their employees make more sustainable transportation choices and green their homes.

A central partner in both these efforts, MPC is hiring a new Project Manager to engage local employers in these opportunities, which are to:

1. Support a range of commuting options to help the company and its workers "go green" and "save greens."

Wondering about the true benefits of reducing the amount of time your workers spend in a car? Then call us! Thanks to a number of new civic partnerships that have emerged from the Chicago Climate Action Plan, 10 to 15 employers will be invited to participate in a new pilot initiative that offers a comprehensive menu of benefits to support a range of commute options (walking, bike-sharing, telecommuting, transit, car-sharing) and assists each employer in tailoring the best package for them. This free Commute Options Program includes an evaluation of how employer-assisted housing (through which employers help their workers live closer to work or transit) and/or any number of strategies for reducing employees’ commutes can achieve a range of goals: save employees on their combined costs of housing and transportation, reduce employers' recruitment and retention costs, shrink everyone's carbon footprint, and realize the outcomes of the Chicago Climate Action Plan.

2.  Encourage employees to make their homes more energy efficient. 

Thanks to Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning's new Chicago Region Retrofit Ramp-up (CR3) Program, funded through a competitive application process by the U.S. Dept. of Energy, employers with existing employer-assisted housing (EAH) programs — or those that create a new program to encourage employees to "green" their homes through a few simple energy saving techniques — can leverage a $3,000 grant for participating employees. The CR3 Program is one of many tools being deployed to make commercial and residential buildings in northeastern Illinois more energy efficient. MPC can help new and existing EAH employers offer energy-retrofit incentives to employees, leveraging tax credits and other incentives for employers as well.  MPC an also introduce employers to other CMAP partners who can assist employers that want to tap incentives for retrofitting their offices or plants.

These new “greening” incentives are just the latest reasons why more employers are stepping up to invest in housing and commute improvements for their workers. For instance, the City of Evanston and its development partner Brinshore deserve kudos for being the latest example of employers offering creative housing solutions for the local workers.

Whether your company is joining forces with local leaders to promote livable communities, economic development, financial literacy, foreclosure recovery, or “live near work or transit,” there’s a strategy out there that’s a win for you and your employees. Call or email us. We will help you figure it out.


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For more than 85 years, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has partnered with communities, businesses, and governments to unleash the greatness of the Chicago region. We believe that every neighborhood has promise, every community should be heard, and every person can thrive. To tackle the toughest urban planning and development challenges, we create collaborations that change perceptions, conversations—and the status quo. Read more about our work »

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