Wired: Public Transit is a ‘Civil Rights Issue’
Travel Blog • Eva Holland • 07.27.11 | 10:54 AM ET
Over at Autopia, Jason Kambitsis breaks it down:
[A]ccess to transportation is key to connecting the poor, seniors and those with disabilities to jobs, schools, health care and other resources. It is essential to widening opportunities for all. Many of us take our mobility for granted, but getting around can be a real challenge for millions of Americans… According to the [Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights] report, the average cost of owning a car is just shy of $9,500. That may not sound like much until you realize the federal poverty level is $22,350 for a family of four. One-third of low-income African-American households do not have access to an automobile. That figure is 25 percent among low-income Latino families and 12.1 percent for whites.
We’ve been keeping tabs on a variety of proposed high-speed rail plans over the years. The Autopia piece offers an important reminder that less-flashy investments in public transportation—from buses to bike lanes to more pedestrian-friendly streets—shouldn’t be forgotten, either.