New Report: Transportation in Transition

by Ben Davis

When I bring up Frontier Group’s research on America’s changing transportation patterns – with friends, family or colleagues – it seems that everyone always has a way to relate… “Yes, my daughter didn’t get her license until she was in college,” “yes, I can’t wait to move into a city where I don’t have to drive,” “Google maps just makes taking public transit so easy,” et cetera, et cetera. For me, it’s always great hearing people relate their personal experiences to quantitative data that show the national decline in driving.

One question that people often ask is, “How have transportation patterns changed in my city?” Well, now there are data to answer just that question. In our new report, Transportation in Transition, we provide information on driving, biking and public transit use at the local level. The report studies the transportation habits in America’s 100 largest urbanized areas and finds that the proportion of workers commuting by car has declined in 99 of them and total vehicle-miles traveled per person has declined in almost three-quarters of them.

In addition to giving city residents opportunities to gauge how travel patterns in their urban and suburban areas relate to national travel trends, the report shows that driving is declining in a wide variety of communities. With this information in hand, local policy makers should shift their focus away from unnecessary new highways and toward transportation choices.

If you are a city resident or decision-maker seeing the decline away from driving and are interested in the recent travel statistics in your neighborhood, please take a look at our report.