Jane Holtz Kay, who passed away last year, was the author of the book “Asphalt Nation — How the Automobile Took Over America and How We Can Take It Back.'”  Although written in 1997, many of the same problems still persist today notes Tom Condon in the Hartford Courant.  The book noted the tremendously negative and wasteful impact of cars.  For example, a car requires 300 square feet of space when not in use and 3,000 when moving at 30 mph. Because one needs three parking spaces each day (one each at home, work and shopping), 30-50% of urban America is dedicated to the car. The collective use of cars also requires huge amounts of petroleum and roadways, but leads to billions of dollars in lost productivity from people stuck in traffic.  There are cultural effects as well, as the poor, handicapped and elderly who can’t drive are increasingly isolated.

 

A Nation Clogged By Wasteful Car Culture