— Per capita VMT drops for ninth straight year; DOTs taking notice | SSTI.us, 2/24/2014
— The love affair is over:
America’s relationship with the automobile is changing. The transportation beat has to catch up | Columbia Journalism Review, 11/2013
Things I learned from reading Why Cul-de-Sacs Are Bad for Your Health on Slate.com:
- The average working adult in Atlanta’s suburbs now drives 44 miles a day. (That’s 72 minutes a day behind the wheel, just getting to work and back.)
- 94% of Metro Atlantans commute by car.
- Metro Atlantans spend more on gas than anyone else in the country.
- Georgia Tech researchers found that a white male living in walkable Midtown Atlanta was likely to weigh 10 pounds less than his identical twin living in a car-dependent place like Mableton.
Also found in that Tech study on Metro Atlantans:
Six out of every 10…couldn’t walk to nearby shops and services or to a public bus stop. Road geometry was partly to blame…that iconic suburban innovation — the cul-de-sac — has become part of a backfiring behavioral system.
Basically, building roads entirely for cars — with cul-de-sac subdivisions being the height of car-dependency — makes for unhealthy people, not to mention unhealthy urban places. Unfortunately, Metro Atlanta has bought into that style of road building big time.
Progress is happening, with better urban design popping up in pockets all over, but the battle is very much an uphill one.