The Green Streets Initiative is a Cambridge, MA-based organization, founded in 2006. We are dedicated to celebrating and promoting the use of sustainable and active transportation.
Our mission is to cultivate the car-light movement and inspire community members, through gentle and consistent nudges, to rethink their commutes. Historically, our levers have included monthly Walk/Ride Days - and our annual Commuter Challenge for workplaces.
Green Streets is proud to say the ball has started to move. People who participated in Walk/Ride Days have consistently shown shifts to more sustainable and healthier transportation. We see the numbers of cyclists continue to rise and their advocacy for better bike infrastructure gain strength, which, in turn, invites more biking. While Covid put a damper on public transit, awareness has grown about the need for radically increasing the extent of public transit to reverse or mitigate climate catastrophe. The momentum is here, the need is still great and we at Green Streets are excited about helping Boston and other cities become even healthier, greener, and more livable.
With the help of social scientists and the latest research, we have honed our approach to empowering individuals.
We believe in the power of the nudge, and Walk/Ride Days are just that--a simple and fun yet powerful mechanism for positive change.
It starts with just one commute
A monthly day of transportation awareness is repetitive and gentle enough to suit the comfort levels of all individuals, whether they wait years to shift routine or don't look back from the first day.
Commuters empower others through conversation and transportation advocacy. This heightened awareness inspires everyone from car drivers to hardcore cyclists to think about the impact of their commute.
Walk/Ride Days inspire exploration, understanding, and change among all kinds of commuters and community members.
Walk/Ride Days have helped me see myself as part of a bike commuting community rather than an individual making the decision to bike to work.
I've been biking to work since 2010 but this program has helped incentivize my behavior even more.
I'd be walking to work whether or not there were Walk/Ride Days. It is kind of a nice affirmation of what I'm already doing.
I've been running to work for over 10 years, so I feel that the Walk/Ride Days are well overdue as a way to recognize the efforts of those of us who have been making healthy commutes.
I check-in because it’s a wonderful way to examine your own commuting habits and get a sense of how your peers and those you work with get around everyday.
I'm from rural Wisconsin where you need a car to get everywhere, and I purposely focused my job search on large cities with public transportation because I didn't want a car. Walk/Ride Days always make me feel good about that decision.
I take the time that I spend walking to unwind from the day and it automatically fits in three miles of exercise to my day, which is great when I generally sit for a large portion of the rest of it!
Walk/Ride Days help me clear my head and provide me with personal time to reflect.
Walk/ride day inspires and reminds me to be green not only through walking places but also by recycling and being conscious about electricity and water use.
Walk/Ride Days helped me reach out to other people at work and encourage them to commute more sustainably.
It has given me an opportunity to talk with colleagues about transportation, environment, and lifestyle issues.
Walk/Ride days have made me question my decision to work so far away from home as driving/sitting in traffic is so stressful for me.
As a result of Walk/Ride Days I now alternate walking and taking a bus instead of driving 5 days a week.I also try to walk more on weekends instead of driving.
Looking at the map of my commute I realize that it's not that far, which is why I started running to and from work 1-2 times a week.
Timeline and awards
Annual Awards Celebrations hosted by Boston City Hall (2018), Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (2017), MA State House (2016), EnerNOC (2015), Volpe Center (2014), MA Department of Public Health (2013)
Walk/Ride Day Posters on the MBTA, sponsored by Lesley University, Mt. Ida College, and Millenium Pharmaceuticals.
Lieutenant Governor and MBTA General Manager Participate in Walk/Ride Day event and Green Streets called a "local treasure" by Health & Human Services Secretary Dr. JudyAnn Bigby in HHS article; Tufts Urban and Environmental Planning Study Documents Walk/Ride Day Impact
Green Streets and Post Office Launch Best-Shoveled Block Contest and in Harvard Square Business Assn Hosts First “Go Green” Breakfast. Green Streets partners with City of Somerville, MA and is selected by MassDOT for Clean Air and Mobility Funding grant to spread Walk/Ride Days to 6 communities and create Corporate Challenge
Green Streets starts in Portland, Maine, inspires Bike Fridays in Boston, is featured in local press, receives Cambridge “GoGreen Business Award”.
Walk/Ride Days Begin in Cambridge Schools. Green Streets Receives Cambridge’s Golden Shoe Award.