Opinion | Why cars and cities are a bad match. – The Washington Post
Cars don’t work well in cities, and the reason is simple: 1) A city is a place where people live close together, so there’s not much space per person. 2) Cars take up a lot of space per person. 3) Therefore, cities quickly run out of room for cars.
This problem is called congestion. When it happens, a city’s options are to:
(A) Stop growing — because congestion has become terrible and growth will make it worse.
(B) Widen streets. This requires huge amounts of land, and land in cities is very expensive. What’s more, if you tear down enough buildings to widen streets, you are effectively destroying your city in order to save it.
(C) Focus on helping people get around using less space than cars require — through walking, cycling and mass transit.
Given the options, it’s not surprising that urban leaders — regardless of political ideology — eventually decide that C is the only real answer.