The push for higher density developments in many American cities has generated new interest and calls for alternative modes of transportation. Transit, bicycling, and walking are seen as healthier, cleaner, and cheaper alternatives to driving. For many young adults, these are preferable options, which help avoid problems of traffic congestion, limited parking availability, and high costs of vehicle ownership.
On the other hand, ride-sharing options like Lyft and Uber create new and convenient ways of moving through a city that actually make the car more preferable to these alternative transportation modes. With ride-sharing options being both affordable and convenient, the need for individual car ownership is significantly diminished in the 21st century.
With apps making it easy to be picked up and dropped off wherever you want without experiencing the hassle of searching for parking or filling up the tank, ride-sharing options are becoming increasingly popular among younger adults. Their popularity is even greater in dense areas, like downtown Tampa and Ybor City, where ridership may spike in the evening hours.
New MPO staff members Johnny Wong, Tim Horst, and Julian Marcos, along with other millennials, are part of an emerging trend of young adults opting out of car usage. Johnny, who lives in St. Petersburg, uses bikes on buses at least one day a week for his commute to Tampa. Tim also enjoys biking to local parks and often chooses ride share options like Uber and Lyft as a connection from home to local bus routes. Julian uses a combination of biking, walking, and driving for work and recreation.
These are just a few examples of the way commuting is changing with a new generation. A related article and video by Nathan Bomey, USA TODAY discusses this new trend: Young adults are ditching driver’s licenses at a quickening pace, according to a new study, raising a red flag for automakers as they grapple with the emergence of ride-sharing services and an indifferent attitude about cars.