“I think it will be a great community builder and help people save money on gas. I also think it will be good for the environment. It’s a win win win.”
Kate Nowak, Executive Director at Yampa Valley Data Partners
on new carpool website for residents of Moffat, Rio Blanco and Routt County
The drive between Craig and Steamboat can seem like no big deal, 45 minutes to an hour and you’re there.
Some can even make it in less time.
But for those who commute to and from on a daily basis, that drive can seem to stretch on. Not to mention the money spent on gas.
That’s why the nonprofit group Yampa Valley Data Partners has organized an online system to bring together residents of Moffat, Rio Blanco and Routt counties so they can carpool.
An online service launched October 1, people can visit the site and register for free with a valid email address, and then begin specifying their carpool needs.
“It’s pretty darn exciting,” said Kate Nowak, Executive Director at YVDP.
Nowak said the Northwest Energy Steering Committee has had a carpool plan in the works for a while now. She said although there are plenty of carpool websites out there, Carpool World seemed to be the best fit to host YVDP's program because it could be customized for the region.
The site offers options to drive or ride, and allows users to designate the distance they will be traveling and the frequency. There are services for commuters on a daily basis and also for one-time trips. Rides are offered and needed for all over Northwest Colorado, not only between Craig and Steamboat.
After designating the type of services needed, members can view matches and contact other commuters in the area by phone or email.
Nowak said on average, there are about 1200 commuters that come from Moffat County into Routt County daily.
She also said the bus services is well-used, and because of large employers such as CNCC that have campuses in Rangely, Hayden and Craig, commuters have to travel all over.
“There are a lot of people in our three county area. It would make sense to utilize the carpool website if you were driving by yourself,” Nowak said. “You can save gas money and meet a neighbor. We’re really excited about it and hope people use it.”
The site is free to use, and decisions such as if gas money will be required are completely up to users.
“Some people will ask for gas money and some will give a free lift," Nowak said. "Negotiating will have to take place."
The website provides safety and security tips to read and consider before committing to any carpool arrangement.
To register, visit the site at www.carpoolworld.com/northwestcolorado.
“I think it will be a great community builder and help people save money on gas," Nowak said. "I also think it will be good for the environment. It’s a win win win."
Darian Warden can be reached at 875-1793 or firstname.lastname@example.org