Car-Dependency is a Spectrum

Exceptional insightful and very much countering the “tackle car dependency” = “ban all cars” narrative used to counter and attack Low Traffic Neighbourhood trials by some residents and opportunistic politicians.

I’d argue Low Traffic Neighbourhoods create healthy inclusive strong car LAST communities where walking, wheeling, cycling, and public transport is prioritised but using your car is still a viable option.

Beyond the Automobile

A community is not simply car-dependent or not. Understanding the various levels of car-dependency can help us create more resilient and multimodal communities. So where does your community fall on the spectrum? Is it where you’d like it to be?


All over the world, communities are planned, designed, built, and operated for various levels of car-dependency, but a community is not simply car-dependent or not – there is a spectrum. A less car-dependent community provides more access to alternative transportation modes: walking, cycling and public transit. A community’s car-dependence is influenced by its street network and design, built form and development patterns, and the level of services provided to each mode.

Of course, these variables are co-dependent and constantly evolving, so it can be difficult to describe what is actually needed to change car-dependence. Instead, what if we took an outcome-oriented approach and simply illustrated what various levels of car-dependence…

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