Cut the Commute: Chamber’s bold billboard message targets KC Commuters

Nearly 2,000 people living in Kansas City commute two or more hours every day to work in St. Joseph, Mo. That’s a lot of commuting up and down I-29 every work day. Not to mention, a lot of gasoline and time away from family. Frequent, long commutes also take a toll on commuters’ health.

The St. Joseph Chamber of Commerce would like these commuters to cut their daily commutes and make St. Joseph their home. The Chamber is taking this message directly to Kansas City commuters as they drive home every evening after a long day at work.

The Chamber’s new bright orange billboard boldly says, “Commuters: if you lived in St. Joseph, you’d be home by now.” The billboard faces north on the east side of I-29 and is easily seen by commuters as they make their daily trek to and from work.

“We want people who work in St. Joseph to live here, too,” said R. Patt Lilly, president and CEO of the St. Joseph Chamber of Commerce. Lilly also noted that not only would commuters have more time with their families, but they’d also save a lot of money on gasoline, and could potentially reduce the health risks associated with long commutes.

“St. Joseph has a lot to offer residents,” said Lilly. “We have a vibrant downtown; a 26-mile Parkway; unique, locally-owned retailers and restaurants; new schools; a university; countless family-friendly festivals and events; and affordable homes. There is really no reason to waste precious time away from family when you can live and work in St. Joseph,” he added.

In addition to losing valuable time away from family, consider:

  • Commuters with lengthy commutes are more likely to feel tired and experience less enjoyment.
  • A California State University Long Beach and the University of California Los Angeles study revealed the number of miles a worker commutes had a stronger correlation with obesity than any other factor studied.
  • Social geographer Erika Sandow discovered there is a 40 percent greater chance a marriage will end in divorce when one partner in the marriage commutes longer than 45 minutes a day.
  • According to a study from Thomas James Christian of Brown University, every minute a person spends commuting decreases the time they spend taking part in healthy activities, like sleeping, preparing meals and exercising.
  • A Gallup Poll found that workers who commute more than 90 minutes are at an increased risk for chronic back or neck problems.

For more information on St. Joseph, visit