Translation: Will the increase in people working at home mean we’ll drive less?
Answer: Apparently not.
Here’s a summary from the terrifically named Center for Advanced Hindsight:
While there may be less commuting, there will be more local trips for shopping and, no doubt, Zoom breaks.
There’s another big implication that’s not mentioned: possibly less congestion during the traditional drive times, but heavier traffic throughout the day. More accidents too, I’d bet. And more conflict in how we allocate or reapportion road space. (In other words, bike lane wars.)
The real-time experiment as a consequence of the pandemic in how we manage our transportation network shouldn’t be wasted. Minimally we should be measuring and reporting on the day-to-day changes that are occurring out there (as discussed here in “How do we start limiting congestion NOW?“) and then trying out different options so we don’t lose the gains we’ve made even as we respond to the ‘climate emergency’.
(Of course, ‘climate emergency’ is not a concern of the Park Board apparently, which showed how easy it is to succumb to the desire to go back to ‘just the way it was.’ Even though we never can and never should.)
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