Council helps EE to ring up savings with new car share scheme

A new car sharing initiative between EE and Darlington Borough Council to help solve EE’s staff car parking problems has produced benefits for both the company and the local community and has also been shortlisted for a national sustainable transport initiative award.

The scheme has been nominated for the Best Sustainable Travel Initiative at the Modeshift National Sustainable Travel Awards, taking place this November.

Early results include:

  • Within the first 12 months of introducing the car share scheme, staff at EE have logged 5,598 car share journeys and led to a noticeable reduction in congestion around the EE site, and the surrounding road network.
  • Car sharing at EE has increased by 3.5% in year one and continues to increase, this means more sustainable transport journeys with fewer cars on the road and consequently less pollution in and around Darlington and the wider Tees Valley.
  • EE realised savings in year one of £20,000.
  • A total of 20,262 car share miles which represents a saving of 5.90 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2).

EE worked with transport planning officer, Alex Kay, at Darlington Council to introduce a simple, effective car sharing plan to reduce single-occupancy car use, after pressure on car parking forced EE to rent additional parking spaces at significant cost.

The additional car spaces were needed to meet the parking needs of mainly single occupancy car drivers. EE have been able to reduce parking spaces by 70 and are gradually phasing out the additional rented parking spaces.

Darlington Council developed and operated the car sharing scheme for EE, with the help of its Let’s Go Tees Valley team of travel advisors who promoted the car sharing option to EE staff.

There was significant buy-in from staff including senior management, facilities, HR, security and communications. EE also offered staff who signed up to the car share plan a range of incentives, which included:

  • Preferential parking with dedicated EE staff parking spaces near to the building entrance. A guaranteed lift home policy.
  • Car share staff matched electronically to colleagues by location and shift times.
  • A £100 yearly incentive to staff who regularly car share.

Alex Kay said: “The car sharing scheme at EE is still in its infancy, but these positive early results show that this is a potential model for other companies in Darlington who face costly parking problems.

“It also offers staff a more environmentally sustainable and social way to commute to work, rather than just driving into work on their own.”

Angela Howey, head of contact centre operations at EE Darlington, said: “The scheme is delivering environmental and social benefits for our people and the local community, including reducing our carbon footprint as we work towards our own net-zero emissions target.

“It’s also fantastic to see the scheme recognised for its positive impact, and shows what can be achieved when business and local authorities work closely together. We hope the scheme inspires others to consider more environmentally friendly ways to travel.”

The aim of the EE car share scheme is simply to encourage and incentivise staff at EE to share their car journeys to work and home wherever possible and use more environmentally friendly ways to travel, to help address the problems of air quality, road congestion and public health in Darlington and across the Tees Valley.

Darlington Council is looking to work with other local companies facing similar parking and congestion issues that could introduce car sharing. Interested companies can find out more by emailing: info@letsgoteesvalley.co.uk

 

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