“CT Rides Week” encourages commuters to change mode of transportation

- FILE - Branford train platform along the Shoreline East rail line (WTNH / Kevin Frederick)

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)– If you’re a commuter, you’re being asked to change your routine this week and maybe long term. It’s all part of “CT Rides Week.

This week is really meant to encourage people to consider alternate modes of transportation when traveling to and from work. The train is one of them.

News 8 was on Shoreline East, traveling between Old Saybrook and New Haven. There are a number of people who do this commute every morning.That’s a number of people who help alleviate congestion on the roads, especially along busy I-95.

This week people are also encouraged to take the bus or even carpool. And the hope is that this change in routine will become a permanent thing at least for some people.

It’s no surprise that we have a number of bus way highways here in the state between interstates 95, 91 and 84. And all that sitting in traffic seems to be taking a toll on us. According to a study done by the National Transportation Research Group, all that congestion robs people of time and fuel.

People driving in the New Haven area spend an extra 40 hours a year, sitting in the car waiting. In Hartford. it’s 45 hours.

News 8 spoke to two computers on this train who travel Shoreline East every single day. One goes into New Haven the other into Fairfield. And both say they do it for convenience.

“Actually it’s more relaxing. I can catch up on my work, some sleep, and I don’t have to deal with the traffic and the parking in New Haven,” said Shari Sisk, Essex.

“It’s really for convenience. It’s for cost, it’s to be productive with my day because otherwise I would be spending 90 minutes each way sitting in a traffic jam,” said Jim Dahl, Westbrook.

Now every year, a hundred thousand people do this commute on Shoreline East between New Haven and Old Saybrook. And roughly 84 million people use public transportation every year in the state. Again the goal is to get those numbers up.

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