Community Featured Resources

Live Near Your Work Brings Sustainability to Local Communities

You would be hard-pressed to find someone in the Washington University community who is unaware of the chancellor’s “in St. Louis, for St. Louis” vision. The Live Near Your Work (LNYW) program is a prime example of how the university walks that walk. The program was first established in 1997 as the Employer Assisted Housing Program and has since been renamed and undergone expansion.  

Founded on the premise of providing stability to local communities, the Live Near Your Work program offers benefits-eligible employees a path to home ownership. A joint effort of Washington University and BJC HealthCare, the initiative was recently expanded to offer potential buyers a forgivable loan up to $12,500 to be used toward the down payment or closing costs of a home within specified neighborhoods.  

“At its heart, Live Near Your Work is a means of encouraging and incentivizing sustainability and public health,” shared David Chunn, community development manager and LNYW program administrator. In addition to curbing greenhouse gas emissions associated with solo car driving, living near your workplace means shorter commute times and makes it easier to opt for a sustainable commute, saving you money and benefiting your physical and mental health.  

Those utilizing the LNYW program move into neighborhoods that have access to transit, green space, and commercial corridors that facilitate shopping and dining destinations by foot. Owning a home also allows access to outdoor spaces which may encourage participants to establish garden spaces for growing vegetables or adopting other sustainable landscaping practices.  

Living near your workplace also benefits the community. Programs like LNYW improve air quality by decreasing automobile emissions, reduce urban sprawl, and decrease high traffic congestion. The program also supports locally owned businesses and provides stability to participating neighborhoods. 

For more information about the Live Near Your Work program and to see if you are eligible, visit the website. You can also reach out to the LNYW team.

Further reading: 

Live Near Your Work Program Expands Eligible Neighborhoods 

What a Pandemic Taught us about Commuting 

WashU Smart Commute page