This Seattle Times article has a ton of statistics in it, but the major points are essentially the following:
- Car registrations per annum have fallen from 33,000 between 1980-1990 to 11,000 between 2000-2006. Population growth was lower during the period 2000-2003 as a percentage, but the absolute numbers were similar.
- Transit Ridership is way up, with Metro close to 7% increase year over year, and Sound Transit up close to 285% in six years.
- Seattle recorded the largest decrease in “drive alone” ride shares of any city in the nation, of 1.5%.
- 1990’s Growth Management Act seems to have had a lot of effect on the commuting patterns, as more people have been moving into condos and apartments in already existing neighborhoods and cities compared to new subdivisions in the county. I guess urban planning works!
I think this shows that we need even more transit, and as congestion gets worse, we need more of our transit to be grade separted. Goldy over at HA wrote a good argument for why we can’t build roads to alleviate our traffic congestions, and why grade-separated transit gives us a choice with how to commute.
2 Replies to “Cars becoming less popular in KC”
You’re right. This shows we should build more transit.
And this is why Prop 1 — which wastes billions on highways without fixing the ones we know we have to fix — is such a terrible idea. At a time when cars are getting less popular and transit is getting more popular, Prop 1 strikes a deal that will lock us into yet more highways.
Since there is an increasing appetite for more transit, we can look forward to good things if Prop 1 fails — light rail will be back on the ballot in 2008 or 2009.
Anonymous I completely disagree! Light Rail will not be back on the ballot in 08-09. This is not the way that Seattle does things! I have been here for some time now, and I have been able to see how things work here. Now is the time. If people want real, responsible, reliable transit the ballot is before you next month. NOT NEXT YEAR! Now is the only shot that Seattle will have to expand their decent system and make it much better. I agree with you that roads are a waste, but we do have to maintain some of the roads we have currently like the 520 and with the value of the gas tax going down it has to come from somewhere. Washington is one of the least taxed states. I am sure they can handle this!
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