Wednesday, March 18, 2015

More on Business, Millennials, and Biking

HZDG's new space in DC.
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A recent Washington Post story provides another example of how businesses looking to the future are considering transit options, accessibility, and bike facilities as necessary elements to attract talented employees. Karen Zuckerman, founder and co-owner of Rockville-based advertising firm HZDG, told the Post that her company is looking to add millennial workers and specifically acquired a 6,000-square-foot “co-worker” space in Dupont Circle (described by the Post as “millennial Ground Zero”) to keep her up-and-comers happy — and lure more to the company.

HZDG made the decision after discovering “almost by accident” last year that its employees preferred to work in a small temporary office in Chinatown rather than the Rockville headquarters because of the Chinatown location's accessibility. HZDG also is trying to make its Rockville headquarters more attractive to millennials and that effort has included providing bike racks and exercise boot camps.

Finally, this isn't just a Maryland business phenomena. The Post mentions that HZDG’s initiative comes at a time when, according to a recent study by the Brookings Institution, city leaders across the United States are moving away from traditional economic growth strategies that promote suburban and “far-flung industrial parks” to revitalizing downtown and urban areas. The Post also noted that CustomInk, a millennial-heavy T-shirt company with more than 1,000 employees, last year moved from Tysons Corner to Fairfax County’s Mosaic District, which re-creates a downtown with offices, restaurants, theaters and residences.

Fairfax County is moving in the right direction by planning major bike facilities in Tysons as part of the summer repaving schedule and completion of the Bicycle Master Plan. However, it is going to be a major challenge to remake many of our activity centers into walkable, bikeable places.

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  Bike to Work Day 2015 at Wiehle Station

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