With Proposition 104 coming up for a vote soon, transportation has become an increasingly hot topic around Phoenix watercoolers. Aside from the few individuals who are lucky enough to get to work from home, most of us have to commute to work. Phoenix is a large metropolitan city but the average Phoenicians’ commute is approximately 26 minutes, right in line with the national average. So how are most of these people getting to work? The majority of our city’s great residents commute by car, however millions of other individuals use buses, or the light rail, while others walk or bicycle to work.
Drivers – When we say a majority of Phoenix commuters drive, we mean an overwhelming majority. 87 percent of workers get to their job by car. Traffic in Phoenix is not great, but it is far from abysmal, plus drivers appreciate the freedom that cars provide. Do you want to stop for a bite to eat or a coffee on the way to work? With a car that is no problem!
Light Rail – The light rail is a relatively new form of public transportation, debuting for use to the Phoenix commuter in 2008. It stretches 20 miles from Mesa to Phoenix. The light rail sees approximately 14 million riders a year with a demographic largely composed of college students.
Buses – Buses are Phoenix’s second most popular form of transportation. Bus routes cover a majority of the city allowing commuters to get almost anywhere they desire. Our buses give out 58 million rides a year. Bus passengers make up about 4% of total Phoenix commuters.
Pedestrians – It probably does not come as much of a surprise that not many people walk to work in Phoenix. Only about 2%, or 12,000 people a year brave the heat and the sun during their commute. Hopefully, they bring a change of clothes to work – if not, pity their coworkers.
Cyclists – The smallest group of all. Only about 4,000 people a year bike to work. Increasing this number is a point of emphasis for Phoenix law makers as biking is a form of clean transportation that is also good for your health!