Commuters Conquer the Cold and Record Warmth

Commuters Conquer the Cold and Record Warmth

Image of a bus in the snow at the Ypsilanti Transit Center

Press Release
For Immediate Release
February 27, 2024

Lilliane Webb
328 S. Fifth Ave.,
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48104

ANN ARBOR, MI -- The getDowntown Program is pleased to announce 170 people joined the Conquer the Cold challenge in which community members opted to walk, roll, bike, carpool, and use public transportation this winter. Conquer the Cold aimed to show that it isn’t as difficult to get around without driving as it may seem in the winter months.

The high temperature in Ann Arbor on the first day of the challenge, January 15, was 6 degrees Fahrenheit. Yet temperatures reached 60 degrees in early February. Nonetheless, participants recorded 4,979 trips covering more than 15,800 miles without driving alone by the end of challenge on February 15. An estimated 17.1 tons of greenhouse gas were avoided by Conquer the Cold participants during the challenge.

“The fact that all 170 participants earned the badge for walking goes to show how simple and rewarding it can be to use sustainable transportation modes during winter,” stated Lilliane Webb, getDowntown Director. “Most participants earned the Public Transportation badge as well. Community participation in this event helps show that even little steps here and there combine towards overall community goals of reducing emissions and vehicle miles traveled.”

The challenge offered education, social meet ups, and different online activities to help commuters overcome the potential barriers of winter weather. Top finishers earned prizes from Bivouac Ann Arbor, H.E.H. Human Electric Hybrids, and the Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority.

To encourage ongoing sustainable transportation choices, the getDowntown program is offering a chance to win a $50 gift card for The M Den for those logging trips on February 16-29, 2024.  

Upcoming sustainable transportation events include The Commuter Challenge and Bike to Wherever Day in May.

Conquer the Cold is organized by the getDowntown Program, a program of the Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority (TheRide) in partnership with the Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority and the City of Ann Arbor.  For up to date information on this and other benefits of commuting by alternative modes of transportation, visit