The cost of traffic explained in 4-minutes
If you build for the car, the car, and all its shadows, is what you get.
by ITDP Mexico
Before someone says it…Yes, the numbers of people who drive are reversed in the United States (70% drive, 30% find other means, mas o minus), but that is precisely because we have committed vast sums of money to subsidize automobile use over the last 75 years. Attempts at charging a market price for its use and storage is fought at every opportunity, typically by the same people who are the most staunch free-market promoters. Those same folks tend to also be the most vocal complainers about high gas prices despite the U.S. paying the lowest prices at the pump than any other of the richest nations.
The U.S. is at a critical point. The infrastructure we have propped up in the name of one mode is in need of repair. The question remains, will we repair the public spaces to serve more than one need, a complete street approach that honors public space, or will we continue to encourage and favor the mode that has the most externalities that we all pay for one way or another–regardless of how much you drive.
Externalities* discussed in film: traffic (congestion), pollution, time-loss, stress, health issues, lack of public spaces, accidents (crashes), climate change…they might have even missed a few.
What externalities might you add?
* Externality: A consequence, that can often be quantified economically, of an activity that affects other parties without it being reflected in the cost, thus obscuring the true cost to individual and society.
Traffic is like gas…