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News Release

Metrolinx Celebrates the 11th Annual Smart Commute Awards

TORONTO: November 24, 2017 – Over 150 people from across the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA) came together last night to celebrate innovative and exceptional solutions to congestion. Metrolinx recognized five employers, one honourable mention and one individual for outstanding achievement in shifting behaviour away from driving alone and towards smart travel options such as walking, cycling, transit, carpooling and teleworking.

Metrolinx operates two programs to reduce congestion in the region. The Smart Commute Program has over 250+ participating workplaces with an aim to ease gridlock while saving time and money. The Active and Sustainable School Travel program promotes active transportation amongst students in the region. For this program all six regions comprising the GTHA were recognized for their efforts in this year’s Bike to School Week campaign.


This program has been highly successful in changing travel behaviour to and from work. In fact, Smart Commute Program members drive alone 14% less than the average GTHA commuter. And, the program is truly region wide with over 700,000+ members – that’s one out of five GTHA commuters.

From among the nominations submitted, an independent Awards Review Panel selected the top workplaces for the Employer of the Year Awards, and from those finalists, a winner for the entire Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area was chosen.

This year’s 2017 Employer of the Year recipients include:

  • Halton Region – WSP Group
  • City of Hamilton – Maple Leaf Foods
  • Peel Region – Greater Toronto Airports Authority
  • City of Toronto – Humber College
    • Also the winner of the Regional Employer of the Year Award

Honourable mentions this year included York Region District School Board.

The 2017 Champion Award was given to Prabh Banga of Greater Toronto Airports Authority for her outstanding work to make better travel options available for her colleagues.


The six regional municipalities were recognised for their work to promote and support school and student participation in Bike to School Week, May 29 – June 2, 2017. 421 schools registered and 25,000 students participated leading to a 5.2% daily cycling mode share. That’s 1 in 20 students cycling to school.

This campaign is a collaborative effort between school boards and regions. A diverse group of community members – teachers, parents, principals, school board members – received their award of recognition.


“Winners of the Smart Commute Awards 2017 have done an exceptional job in changing travel behaviour – both at their workplaces and at schools across the region. Congratulations to all winners. Both the programs – Smart Commute and Active and Sustainable School Travel – create strong connections within communities to optimize the system we have by connecting journeys via walking, biking, transit, carpooling or telework. Last night’s winners demonstrate that together we are building sustainable communities in the region.”
- Leslie Woo, Metrolinx’s Chief Planning Officer

The Smart Commute Awards were introduced in 2007 to officially recognize employer members and partners who have put forth exceptional effort in implementing their Smart Commute programs. These awards acknowledge outstanding commitment, leadership, innovation and results.

Smart Commute is a program of Metrolinx and the municipalities in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area. Smart Commute helps anyone who is going from A to B explore and try out smart travel options such as walking, cycling, transit and carpooling. Our goal is to ease gridlock while helping you save time and money. To date, more than 300 employers with 700,000 employees have signed on to the program and are designated Smart Commute workplaces.

To learn more about the award recipients please visit: smartcommute.ca/success-stories/awards/

Media inquiries:
Vanessa Barrasa, Media Relations, Metrolinx