U.S. Cities Where Transportation is Being Transformed (and Cars Are Growing Unfashionable)

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In some cities, the incentive to own a car--and cover its costs--is plummeting as other alternatives emerge.

This post comes from Susan Ladika at CarInsurance.com.

Owning and driving your own vehicle may eventually take a back seat to using alternative forms of transportation in the most connected cities in the country.

Car sharing, ride sharing, bike sharing, public transportation apps and a host of other transportation and technology options are expected to help fuel the trend away from automobile ownership.

Principle U.S. cities are rated for their options and technology in “The Innovative Transportation Index: The Cities Where New Technologies and Tools Can Reduce Your Need to Own a Car,” published by the U.S. PIRG Education Fund and the Frontier Group.

The ranking looks at 70 key U.S. cities. It includes the primary cities in the 50 biggest U.S. metro areas, as well as the largest city in each state that doesn’t have one of the largest metro areas.

With a wide range of transportation options and technology solutions, “people don’t necessarily have to own their own car in order to have mobility in cities,” says Phineas Baxandall, transportation program director at the U.S. PIRG Education Fund.

The report looks solely at which cities have the most tech tools that make it easiest to get around without owning a vehicle, Baxandall cautions. It doesn’t gauge which cities have the best public transportation or other transportation alternatives.

In the report’s ranking, Austin, Texas, holds the top spot. It’s the only city where all 11 of the tech tools and options are available. San Francisco holds the No. 2 spot, with Washington, D.C., a close third.

The study looks at cities by the number of options available and the number of service providers.

Top 20 cities with alternative transportation technology:

  1. Austin, Texas: 11 options available; 18 service providers
  2. San Francisco: 10 options available; 23 service providers
  3. Washington, D.C.: 10 options available; 20 service providers
  4. Boston, Los Angeles and New York: nine options; 19 providers
  5. Portland, Oregon: nine options; 17 providers
  6. Denver, Minneapolis, Minnesota; San Diego; Seattle: nine options 16 providers
  7. Dallas: nine options; 14 providers
  8. Columbus, Ohio: nine options; 12 providers
  9. Chicago: eight options; 17 providers
  10. Houston, Miami, Milwaukie; Tampa: eight options; 12 providers
  11. Nashville: eight options; 11 providers
  12. Orlando, Florida: seven options; 13 providers

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