Mobility for the carless

According to survey by the AARP:

a substantial number of  Vermonters (54%) do not believe there are enough driving alternatives in their community and would like to see more. In addition, some 73% of Vermonters are concerned about the impact of vehicle emissions on global warming.  Survey respondents said they were also concerned about gas costs and change their driving habits when prices are high. About 90% of residents believe the State should play a role in helping non-driving residents get where they are going.

Vermonters who are older, not working or with lower incomes often report difficulty in getting transportation when they need it.  As our population ages it is ever more important to provide alternatives to the automobile.  Avoiding isolation means not only being able to get around town, but being able to travel distances visit family.

The full AARP report on mobility for an aging Vermont is available here.

Since all of us are aging, this matters to everyone.

It matters especially to the millions and millions of well off New Yorkers who do not have cars -- and to the Vermont economy which would like to compete for their tourist visits.

We've also heard that train service makes it possible for Vermonters with physical and mental disabilities to travel who would not otherwise be able to.

Because trains are not stuck in traffic jams, they play a role in reducing congestion.  A railroad runs right through the IBM plant, the largest employer in the state.  Commuter trains could play a signficant role in helping traffic flow in Essex Junction.