Downtown Concierge

United Way: Downtown C-pass Champion

United Way: Downtown C-pass Champion

Making a shift from single-car commuting to transit can seem like a big hurdle. However, when community leaders truly support alternative transportation, it encourages employees to try new ways to get around. That’s where United Way of Central Ohio steps in.

As a property owner in the Capital Crossroads Special Improvement District, United Way helps fund Downtown C-pass. This program gives eligible employees unlimited access to the entire COTA bus system. Yes, that means any route, any time, any day. It’s an innovative approach to address the downtown parking shortage and provide easy access to Downtown jobs.  

United Way also provides a framework for long-term change in commuting habits with things like teleworking and bike to work events.

Long before C-pass launched, United Way cheered it on and encouraged employees to take the bus. The organization offered all employees free bus passes in anticipation of the C-pass launch. As a result, a 12 percent shift of employees began using the bus for some of their commutes—and this is an organization that offers free onsite parking.

If this is any indication of the impact Downtown C-pass can have on commuting habits, big changes are coming. If the Downtown C-pass sees a modest five percent shift from single-occupancy vehicle trips to transit, thousands of cars would be removed from the roadways and downtown parking garages.  This has huge implications on our environment, Downtown development, and disposable income for thousands of people working Downtown.

“Downtown property owners developed an innovative approach to address a community issue, which is exactly what needs to happen to affect real change,” says United Way of Central Ohio’s president and CEO Lisa Courtice. “Downtown C-pass has the potential to make Central Ohio a better place and help Downtown thrive.”

If you would like more information about the Downtown C-pass, visit or call (614) 591-4184.