Arlington County Commuter Services
Arlington County Commuter Services (ACCS) is the Transportation Demand Management (TDM) agency of Arlington County, Virginia. ACCS was established in 1989 in order to enhance Arlington's economic vitality. Its mission involves reducing traffic congestion, decreasing parking demand, promoting maximum use of High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) infrastructure, and improving air quality and mobility in and around Arlington. ACCS provides information and services to increase the use of alternative transportation through programs including WalkArlington, BikeArlington, Arlington Transportation Partners, The Commuter Store, CommuterDirect.com, TDM for Site Plan Development, Research, and Mobility Lab. See below for more information about each program.
Since its inception, ACCS has continuously improved upon its performance and level of impact on the Arlington community. On an average workday in Fiscal Year (FY) 2011, the services provided by ACCS shifted approximately 40,100 auto trips to higher occupancy modes of travel, including rail, bus, ridesharing, as well to walking and bicycling. As a point of reference, during the three hour peak commute period 37,000 vehicles travel through Arlington on I-66 and I-395. On an annual basis, this reduction in travel equates to almost 7.2 million gallons of fuel saved and significant reductions in climate changing greenhouse gases.
ACCS performs this important task of information provision for Arlington County by implementing Transportation Demand Management (TDM) programs and strategies that promote public transit, walking, biking, carpooling, vanpooling, telecommuting, and other options that reduce the demand for vehicular travel, lessen congestion and air pollution, and improve accessibility. ACCS serves as an information and educational resource center for residents, employees, and visitors who travel to and within the County.
ACCS is a bureau of Arlington County's Transportation Division in the Department of Environmental Services. ACCS is funded in part by grants from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) and the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT).
A place where it is easy and desirable for everyone to choose to get around by transit, walking, biking, and sharing the ride.
To provide Arlington residents, employees, business, and visitors with transportation information and services to support a vibrant and livable community.
ACCS prides ourselves in planning for and adjusting with the changing trends within Arlington County and the transportation and TDM industry in general. ACCS tracks our performance to ensure progress toward each of our stated goals and objectives and uses the results of the progress to inform our annual Strategic Plan.
ACCS accomplishes its mission by encouraging people who live, work or commute through Arlington to use mass transit, car and vanpool, bicycle, walk, telecommute and use other alternatives to driving alone. ACCS does this through a number of programs and services, detailed below.
The Commuter Store®, Mobile Commuter Store, & CommuterDirect.com®,
The Commuter Store, Mobile Commuter Store, and CommuterDirect.com sell fares for Washington, DC-area transit systems. CommuterDirect.com provides online fare sales. Customers can receive tickets and passes by mail, or pick them up at The Commuter Store. The Commuter Store has four retail locations in Arlington and one in Odenton, Maryland. The Mobile Commuter Store makes scheduled visits to locations in Arlington and Washington, DC.
In addition to selling fares, The Commuter Store and Mobile Commuter Store also offer printed transit schedules and maps, and the stores' Commuter Specialists can provide information about transit, carpooling, vanpooling, bicycling, teleworking, and more.
WalkArlington strives to get more people walking more of the time by promoting the health, environmental, economic, community-building, and transportation benefits of walking.
BikeArlington's goal is to get more Arlingtonians biking more often, whether they're commuting, shopping, or just having fun. The region-wide bikesharing program, Capital Bikeshare, is supported by BikeArlington's efforts.
Arlington Transportation Partners – Employer Services
Arlington Transportation Partners offers free services for Arlington employers (613 member companies representing 135,600 employees), residential communities (301 member buildings representing 69,252 apartment/ condo units), developers and visitor services (to 41 hotels) to set up commuter benefits programs.
TDM For Site Plan Development
The Transportation Demand Management (TDM) Program for Site Plan Development coordinates real estate site plan development with commuter and transit services. The program seeks to mitigate the transportation impacts of residential and commercial real estate development projects by encouraging the use of transit, ridesharing, biking, walking, and other alternatives. The program also reviews development proposals, applies TDM policy, and creates TDM Site Plan conditions. They enforce and monitor more than 120 site plans.
ACCS conducts surveys and studies in order to quantify the impacts of its programs, and uses this body of research to inform the strategic direction and rationale for ACCS services. ACCS research is available at MobilityLab.org.
Call Center, Fulfillment Center, Distribution & Logistics
- Call Center for Arlington Transit and websites
- Brochure distribution; 600,000 pieces delivered annually
- Bus stop signage information program (500+ bus stops)
The Mobility Lab nurtures innovations to a fundamental requirement of human life: transportation. It is a place of collaboration, education and continuous improvement for moving people in more healthy, efficient and sustainable ways.
Marketing and Promotions
- Individual program marketing for ART—Arlington Transit, Metrobus routes serving Arlington, iRide, Arlington's Car-Free Diet, and ACCS programs and services
- Special Initiatives
- “Street Team”—promotes transit, biking, and walking at special events
Federal and State Support
About 50% of the ACCS budget comes from Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ); another 26% from State grants called TDM/Commuter Services, Transit Aid, and Transit Technical Assistance.
Funds Generated by ACCS Programs
ACCS is partially self-funded by commissions and fees on the sale of fare media, and by site plan contributions for traffic mitigation.
- CommuterDirect.com (online fare media sales)
- The Commuter Store (retail locations and a Mobile Commuter Store)
- Transportation Demand Management for Site Plan Development
Is It Worth It?
The work that ACCS does supports the investment the County has made in its land use plan and transportation infrastructure, resulting in better use of Arlington's transportation system. (See Overview, Vision and Mission, above.) Getting more people to take transit, carpool, bike, and walk reduces traffic congestion, improves air quality, benefits Arlington businesses, and has a positive impact on public health and quality of life. There are many benefits for a modest investment by Arlington taxpayers.
ACCS does ongoing research on the effectiveness of its programs to find out what's working and what could be improved. The results of these studies are available in the Arlington County Transportation Demand Management Research Center.