Study: More people driving less on Charlotte roads

by: Peter Daut Updated:

CHARLOTTE, N.C. —

A new study found more people are driving less on Charlotte roads, and it's not because of the economy.

According to the study just released  by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, the number of people who drive, and the total number of miles traveled by car in the Charlotte region have dropped by more than three percent in the last decade.

In fact, Charlotte is among the top 10 cities in the nation that saw the largest drop of workers traveling by car. New York is the highest.

Researchers said the trend is not related to the economy.

As more people work from home, baby boomers retire, the cost of gas remains high and the percentage of people owning cars and getting driver's licenses drops, Americans are driving 7.6 percent fewer miles than they did back in 2004.

Driver Wanda Elmore said she's not surprised by the drop in driving, and plans to forgo her car once construction of the LYNX Blue Line extension is finished.

"It's just more convenient, and economical for your pockets," Elmore said.

That growing mentality is why the city is pouring millions into public-transit projects like the extension.

"It is much easier to build transit now when we have more opportunities to do that as far as space availability," construction manager John Mrzygod said.

To see the full study, click here.