In a 2014 interview, Joe Mullin, then Public Affairs Director of Clock Tower Place – a large commercial complex in Maynard – explained why providing transportation and participating in coordination efforts made business sense:
Providing Transportation for Employees Makes Business Sense
In 1998, we took over an abandoned commercial office park here in the suburbs, which is as large as the Prudential Office complex in Boston – a total of 1.1 million square feet. We were aware that our office park had had more than 50 separate tenants in the 1970s, and we wanted to repeat that commercial leasing success in the 2000s.
We knew from the outset that we would be attracting tenants from Boston, and that some of their employees could only get to us via mass transit and the nearby South Acton and West Concord MBTA stations. We also knew that we didn't have enough parking spaces to fulfill the parking zoning bylaw requirements of the Maynard Planning Board. However, if we decreased demand for on-site parking by marketing and implementing an environmentally friendly commuter rail shuttle service, the Planning Board would exempt us from the law that would have required us to add more parking spaces.
These were the two reasons – business common sense in attracting tenants, and environmental improvement gains recognized by the Maynard Planning Board – that impelled us to put in place the commuter rail shuttle service between Clock Tower Place and the rail stations right from the beginning – in the spring of 1998. These two reasons are still in place today.
Participating in Transportation Coordination Partnerships Makes Business Sense
The Towns of Acton, Boxborough, Concord, Littleton, Maynard, Stow, and Westford, along with Clock Tower Place, have been working together to solve the region’s unmet transportation needs for over five years. The partners formed CrossTown Connect, a unique Transportation Management Association, to provide coordinated transportation services for commuters, as well as seniors, people with disabilities, or others who need to travel to medical appointments or other errands. Business members participate and pay dues to receive services for their employees, like ridematching to help form carpools, a Guaranteed Ride Home program for use in emergencies, and programs designed to promote active commuting options like biking and walking.
At Clock Tower Place, we were attracted to CrossTown Connect because it was trying to put in place an expanded version of what we have been doing for over 15 years.
CrossTown Connect increases the number of people and organizations all steering the boat in the same direction. In terms of our lonely shuttle, if it turns out we can somehow coordinate or even merge our existing shuttle to include town riders as well our Clock Tower Place shuttle users, then the number of people using the shuttle will increase, our Clock Tower Place shuttle operations costs will decrease, and the Town of Maynard's air pollution from locally generated motor vehicle sources will also decrease.
By partnering with CrossTown Connect, we have the opportunity to decrease our transportation costs while continuing to ensure that our employees can access their jobs whether or not they have a car. We also help decongest local traffic jams, reduce emissions and pollution, and make the world a better place to live.