Downtown Concierge

Inside 43215: Talking Transit


inside 43215


Downtown Columbus

Does your employer offer free or subsidized parking, but not equal transit benefits? If so, it might be contributing to a spike in parking prices or shortage of parking spaces.

"Some employers are creating an artificially high demand for parking because they reward people financially for driving to work," explains Capital Crossroads researcher Marc Conte. "If you're an employee who has a choice between free parking and paying four dollars a day for public transit, you will probably pick the free parking. It doesn't matter how good the transit service is."

Conte encourages employers to equalize benefits, whatever they are. Within the core are of downtown, a one percent shift from driving to transit has the same impact as building a new parking garage. In some cases, employers will save money by offering transit benefits. Many employees would prefer to take transit to work, and bus passes are often less expensive than monthly parking.

The Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA) offers local, monthly bus passes for $62 and express bus passes for $85. Stops for most bus routes are located along High Street. For more information about COTA bus routes, Park & Ride locations, bus passes and pre-tax benefits, email Kelsie at