Think cars are over in America? We do.
The Atlantic has called "peak car"—not once but twice. We have repeatedly explained why young Americans "don't care about owning" a vehicle. We predicted a long-term decline of auto sales, and, in a dramatic moment, essentially announced "the end of car ownership," generally.
We had strong data. Perhaps we had strong biases, too.
The members of the The Atlantic Business Channel all live in New York City. At various points in our lives, we have all lived in Washington, D.C., too. And these two cities, the twin nodes of the I-95 mainstream-media corridor, happen to be the two metros with the highest share of non-car households in America, according to the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute. Here are the non-car household rates in 30 large U.S. cities (the national average is in RED):
What do NYC, DC, Boston, and Philadelphia have in common? For one, they're old, crowded cities with good (okay, decent) public transit. “The five cities with the highest proportions of households without a vehicle were all among the top five cities in a recent ranking of the quality of public transportation," Michael Sivak, director of Sustainable Worldwide Transportation at Michigan, told WSJ.