Gasoline Consumption and Cities

Gasoline Consumption and Cities

This article studies the relationship between gasoline consumption and urban design patterns by comparing 32 principal cities from around the world. The purpose is to evaluate physical planning policies for conserving transportation energy in urban areas.

Key findings

The size of a city does not correlate to more automobile travel, in fact it was higher in smaller cities. This correlation suggests that size is less important that other physical planning parameters.

Land use intensity, or the density of people and jobs in an area, is clearly correlated with gasoline use overall. Cities like New York show this correlation: the denser inner city residents use fewer gallons of gasoline per person than residents in the greater tristate region.

“The strength of the city center can also affect transportation patterns - the more jobs in the city center the more viable generally is transit, which has its justification in large numbers of people all going to one place.”

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