White House Selects UW Spin-out Greenroads As A “Champion of Change” For Its Contribution to Sustainable Transportation

UW spin-out company Greenroads was honored on Wednesday, March 8, 2013 as a White House Champion of Change for Transportation Technology Solutions in recognition for its unique ratings system designed to certify sustainable roadway and transportation projects. The Champions of Change program was created as an opportunity for the White house to feature groups of Americans – individuals, businesses and organizations – who are doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities.

“These Champions represent the very best in American leadership, innovation, and progress,” said US Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood. “I’m proud to recognize these transportation leaders who work every day to grow our economy and help us reach our destinations more quickly, efficiently, and safely.”

Greenroads-teamGreenroads Executive Director Jeralee Anderson accepted the award at an event hosted by the White House and US Department of Transportation called “Transportation Technology Solutions for the 21st Century”, along with Champions from across all modes of our transportation industry who are providing significant leadership in the development and/or deployment of transportation technology solutions for the 21st Century at the local, state or regional level.

The Greenroads Foundation is the developer of the Greenroads Rating System, a collection of sustainable roadway design and construction best practices that address water, environment, access, community impact, construction practices and materials. There are 11 project requirements, which must be completed in order for a roadway to be considered a “Greenroad.” There are 47 additional activities that may be voluntarily completed to earn points called “credits,” which are designed to encourage sustainability achievement above and beyond standard practice. After a rigorous review process, the Greenroads Foundation then assigns the roadway project a score, which translates to one of four certification levels: Bronze, Silver, Gold and Evergreen. Currently, there are over 30 registered projects pursuing certification and 6 completed and certified projects in the world. Several registered projects are slated to finish certification in 2013 located in San Jose, Denver, Houston and San Francisco.

Greenroads-exampleAnderson believes that Greenroads has a significant impact on the communities in which it works. “As a result of using the Greenroads Rating System, many public agencies have been able to reduce their costs, develop sustainability practices and improve the environmental impacts of their transportation projects”, she says. “For example, the City of San Jose, CA, saved 23 percent of the total cost to its Monterey Road Reconstruction Project. Similarly, the City of Bellingham in Washington State created concrete sidewalks out of 400+ crushed, recycled toilets, and the City of Tacoma, WA, restructured its asset management system to improve the operation and maintenance of its public facilities.”

Other honorees at the White House included industry leaders such as James Crites, the Vice President of the Dallas Fort Worth Airport, Josh Whiton, President of Transloc and Kevin Koyasu, President and CEO of Nippon Sharyo USA, Inc.