Over-crowded highways in the U.S., with roughly 120 million commuters driving to work each day, are more than a source of irritation – they emit a lot of health-harming, global-warming pollution.

Digital age graphic

Gridlocked bridges and tunnels can be a daily hassle, but they’re dangerous when there’s an emergency or need for a hasty evacuation.

Telecommuting, increasing public transportation, and building more roads can all reduce traffic congestion.

But Michael Shear of Strategic Office Networks has another idea: take advantage of today’s information and communication technologies, and bring work closer to where employees live.

For example, instead of a central business office, large companies could rent space in regional work centers that house multiple companies.

SHEAR: “It really does not only shorten their drive to work, but it also presents the opportunity to work for a number of major employers as opposed to those that are perhaps just close enough to drive to.”

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Shear has proposed creating distributed work centers for the federal government in Maryland. If the proposal is funded, employees in the area may be the first in the country to test a model that could shorten their daily commutes and reduce global-warming pollution.

Reporting credit: ChavoBart Digital Media.
Photo: Copyright protected.

More Resources
Measuring the Energy Reduction Impact of Selected Broadband-Enabled Activities within Households
Distributed Work Centers
Telecommuting: Transport and Environment Issues

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