Part of: Reducing Demand for Vehicle Trips in Cities

Urban Transportation Has Supply and Demand

[bws_pdfprint display='pdf' text='Download PDF']

The conventional way we try to solve urban mobility problems is by building more infrastructure. Photo by Mariana Gil / WRI Brasil.

The supply is the built infrastructure (e.g., streets, overpasses, highways, and parking lots) to accommodate an increasing number of person-trips or person-miles traveled (demand). 

To meet the growing demands of commuters, most cities first try to expand the infrastructure, but many are now:

  • Running out of space
  • Suffering from health problems related to air pollution due to auto exhaust
  • Finding their city centers and neighborhoods disrupted by cars and roads and no longer walkable or livable
  • Increasing housing costs due to off-street parking requirements
  • Fostering car trips due to free on-street parking
  • Paying exorbitant costs for transport-related issues. In some cases, more than 10 percent of a country’s GDP is lost due to wasted time, traffic fatalities, and other things…(Dalkman, H. & Sakamoto, K., 2012)
  • And yet they are still unable to provide high-quality transportation.