The Washington Post did a story this week titled, “Why aren’t younger Americans driving anymore?” Since 2007, Americans have driven less and less, and while there have been dips in driving habits in the past, Plumer notes that, “since June 2005, vehicle miles driven have fallen 8.75 percent. The decline has persisted for 92 months and there’s no sign it’s abating.”
He goes on to discuss the causes for this drop, and high gasoline prices are not the only influence. With young Americans particularly, several other factors come into play.
Plumer lists the cost of driving, the recession, the increased difficulty of getting a license, the migration to transit oriented communities, technology and auto insurance costs as significant factors influencing this decline. Collectively, these reasons have decreased the yearly number of miles driven by 16-34-year-olds 23%.
Is it too much to hope that this trend will continue? As our Missouri legislatures are considering how much money transit will receive from its transportation budget, let’s pressure them to fund the transit infrastructure that enables our future generations to get around without cars. Transit is the more economical, environmental, and safe for us all.
The article cited above is “Why aren’t younger Americans driving anymore?” in The Washington Post found on April 24, 2013 on the World Wide Web – http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/04/22/why-arent-younger-americans-driving-anymore/.
A Letter to send Missouri legislatures for transit funding – http://www.cmt-stl.org/activity-at-mo-capitol-picks-up/.
Read the cited report – http://www.frontiergroup.org/reports/fg/transportation-and-new-generation.