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In partnership with the City of Boston’s Transportation Department (BTD) and with generous funding support from the Energy Foundation via the Bloomberg Philanthropies American Cities Climate Challenge, A Better City released a series of reports to forecast the “future of work” and commute patterns to better understand the impact of COVID-19 on the region.
July 2022 - As the COVID-19 pandemic enters calendar year three and many large companies who have relied on telework are beginning to announce their return to the office plans, A Better City, with collaboration from the City of Boston, has conducted a third iteration of the Boston Commuter Survey. This effort looks to provide a snapshot of commuter attitudes and perceptions at this critical time and draw clearer conclusions about what the future might hold for the metro-Boston region. These findings can help us work with our partners to explore and deliver innovative measures to support commuters and shift away from drive-alone behavior.
This collaborative effort of A Better City / City of Boston would not be possible without previous funding support from the Energy Foundation via the Bloomberg Philanthropies American Cities Climate Challenge.
August 2021 - As Metro-Boston navigated everyday uncertainty resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic over the course of 2020, residents and employees of the region watched bike lanes fill, highways empty, and transit services shift. With nearly 2/3 of Massachusetts residents vaccinated as of mid-July 2021, we have entered a critical moment for shaping the policies and objectives that will guide the next mobility trends in our region as we look toward a post-pandemic future.
As COVID-19 restrictions began to significantly lift at the end of Spring 2021, A Better City reached back out to the employee survey respondents and employer distribution partners we have collaborated with over the past year to revisit commute-focused survey questions posed in Summer 2020. In analyzing responses from over 2,650 commuters, we identified key takeaways and actionable recommendations for employers, the City of Boston, and the MBTA that build upon the results of our previous reports Anticipating Post-Pandemic Return to Work Trends in Metro-Boston and Anticipating Post-Pandemic Commute Trends in Metro-Boston.
This survey effort was made possible thanks to generous support from the Energy Foundation via the Bloomberg Philanthropies American Cities Climate Challenge.
June 2021 - COVID-19 disrupted our lives and our regional economy in a way not seen in generations. The pandemic has also broadened our thinking about how we work and how we move around the region, highlighting the essential roles that public transit and public space play in the health of our citizens, vibrancy of our communities, and the strength of our economy.
A Better City conducted eleven interviews with member companies across six sectors in fall 2020 and winter 2021 to forecast, from the employer perspective, the ‘future of work’ and related commute patterns and to better understand how our individual and collective choices can shape the future. These interviews build upon the results of ‘Anticipating Post-Pandemic Commute Trends in Metro-Boston’— an employee-focused commute survey completed in September 2020 — and inform the key learnings and the recommendations included in this new report.
This interview effort was made possible thanks to generous support from the Energy Foundation via the Bloomberg Philanthropies American Cities Climate Challenge.
November 2020 – As the COVID-19 pandemic has unfolded in metro-Boston, impacts upon daily commute patterns have been clear even to the most casual observer. News of a car-buying boom, the majority of business professionals working from home, widespread pop-up bike lanes, and sparsely populated subway cars have led to many questions in recent months about the future of transportation in the region. At the same time, the importance of meeting citywide goals to increase transit and bicycle riders to reduce carbon emissions has been dialed into even sharper focus. Against this backdrop, the City of Boston partnered with A Better City to survey over 4,200 employees in metro-Boston to better understand how COVID-19 has impacted commuting choices before, during, and in the anticipated future beyond the current pandemic. This survey effort was made possible thanks to generous support from the Energy Foundation via the Bloomberg Philanthropies American Cities Climate Challenge.