Bühler introduces forward-looking mobility concept for employees

Bühler AG, in collaboration with the Canton of St. Gallen, the municipality of Uzwil, and the OSTWIND fare association, has unveiled the Mobility Alliance Eastern Switzerland. This partnership marks the launch of a pioneering project aimed at transforming employee mobility. Recognising its responsibility as a major employer in the Uzwil region, Bühler is committed to reducing commuter emissions by 30% by 2025, encouraging a shift in mobility habits.

Mobility Alliance Eastern Switzerland: A Collaborative Effort
Regional employers significantly influence transport patterns, contributing to traffic congestion and emissions. To meet climate and transport objectives, innovative solutions are necessary. One effective strategy involves transitioning a large portion of commuter traffic to buses, trains, and bicycles. Successful implementation requires robust cooperation between the public sector, mobility providers, and employers. The newly formed Mobility Alliance Eastern Switzerland exemplifies this collaborative approach, combining efforts from political entities, public transport, and key employers to swiftly and sustainably enhance corporate mobility. Bühler’s new mobility concept is the flagship project of this alliance.

Bühler’s Initial Commitment
Bühler, a family-owned company, has long been dedicated to social responsibility, providing quality education, working conditions, nutrition, and health services. As a significant employer in Uzwil, Bühler acknowledges its impact on the community’s quality of life. The company aims to reduce the CO₂ footprint of its Uzwil site by 60% by 2030, noting that approximately 5,000 tonnes of CO₂ are generated annually from commuting. The target is to cut this by 30%, equating to around 1,500 tonnes of CO₂, comparable to the emissions from 5,600 flights to Mallorca. Following preparatory work in 2023, Bühler will roll out its new mobility concept on 1 September 2024.

Enhanced Public Transport Access
The new mobility concept leverages AI-supported data analysis of commuter traffic, conducted by the climate innovation firm 42hacks. The analysis revealed that only 30% of Bühler’s 3,000 employees currently have direct public transport access comparable in speed to car travel. Collaborative workshops with 42hacks, Bühler employees, and partners from the political and transport sectors have devised strategies to extend efficient public transport options to nearly 80% of the workforce.

Concrete Measures for Sustainable Commuting
To enhance the attractiveness of public transport, Bühler is funding a unique offer through the OSTWIND fare association. For CHF 365 per year, employees will receive an exclusive public transport package, relinquishing their free workplace parking. This package includes a half-fare travelcard, an annual subscription for all zones of their residential tariff network (OSTWIND or Z-Pass), and additional credit for trips beyond the travelcard’s regular area.

Uzwil’s train station, located about one kilometre from Bühler, will feature new stations with scooters and bicycles from TIER, a shared mobility provider. Two of these stations will be placed at the train station and Bühler Campus, facilitating quick and convenient travel from the station to the workplace.

For those living within five kilometres of the plant, cycling is a viable option. Bühler will offer rental bikes from Urban Connect, secure parking, and bike service stations. Discounts on new and used bicycles and e-bikes will be available on Bühler Mobility Day, 24 June 2024.

Additionally, Bühler plans to pilot a shuttle bus service in cooperation with the municipality of Uzwil and the Canton of St. Gallen. Employees within an eight-kilometre radius can book the shuttle via an app for home pick-up and drop-off.

Maintaining Flexibility
Despite the shift towards public transport, employee flexibility remains a priority. Those opting for the public transport package can still use cars but will pay for parking. Bühler will also provide electric cars on-site for emergencies, ensuring flexible commuting options.

By implementing this mobility concept, Bühler sets a precedent within the Mobility Alliance Eastern Switzerland, demonstrating the potential of unified efforts between employers, politicians, and transport associations to achieve sustainable corporate mobility.


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Hannah Larvin
Editor, International Confectionery
Tel: +44 (0) 1622 823 920
Email: editor@in-confectionery.com

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