Reverse Commute Areas Analysis

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Posted 10/19

The term reverse commuting refers to trips made by residents of a major urban area, such as Boston, to and from work locations in its suburbs—the opposite direction from traditional commuting patterns. This report analyzes reverse commuting in the Boston region. The US Census Bureau’s data show that 15.4 percent of all commuting trips in the region are reverse commutes, but relatively few of these trips are made by transit. This report contains case studies about reverse commuting from the urban core to the suburbs of Burlington, Needham, Waltham, and Woburn, all of which have large concentrations of jobs. Each case study discusses existing transit options, barriers to accessing suburban employment locations from the urban core, and potential means of reducing these barriers. Finally, this report reviews existing Guaranteed Ride Home programs, which can help to assure commuters who use transit instead of personal vehicles that they will not be stranded if faced with the need to return home from work during hours the transit service is not operating.

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