Facts Should Change the Status Quo
The percentage of young people with a driver’s license has plunged during the last several years, according to a new study by the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute. In 2008, for instance, 65.4% of 18-year-olds had a driver’s license. Now, 60.1% do. The trend has been underway for decades but seems to have intensified since the recession that began at the end of 2007.
This trend, the decline of miles of travel per capita, climate change, and the growth of people biking and walking should motivate our State and local appointed and elected officials to stop adding capacity to the highway and street systems in anticipation of future traffic growth. Instead, transportation investments should focus on completing the bicycle and pedestrian networks so people can walk or bicycle on facilities that promote safe and efficient travel using these modes. Without this change the State and local bike and pedestrian networks will never be complete nor will the potential economic, health and environmental benefits of these modes be realized.
Please consider reviewing and commenting on the Oregon Department of Transportation’s draft Oregon Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan (see post below).