It’s not looking good in New York:
In Manhattan alone, new car registrations rose 76% and in Brooklyn, registrations climbed 45%.
Then came the coronavirus and a national lockdown. With practically no traffic, even non-urbanists like me suddenly realized how much space we’d given over to cars, and we envisioned these same streets as quieter, cleaner public spaces that could contain something else.
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I wouldn’t worry too much. In 2 years, most of those recently-registered cars will be sold at a loss. Owning a car in NYC is a universe of hassle, especially if one is stupid enough to commute into Manhattan with it.
In Metro Vancouver, there are 2M vehicles for a population of about 2.6 M. As ICBC rated come down on May 1/21 more cars will hit the streets.
The good news from Paris is good news indeed. It’s high time that residents of London, Paris, Brussels, Berlin, Antwerp, Cologne, Munich etc realized how flat their cities are. Even the sevenish hills of Rome are pretty small potatoes. Dense and flat, what else can you ask for as a cyclist?
And I don’t think that the news from New York is as bad as the headline writers would have it. From my read of the articles, these are just increases in monthly new car registrations, not in total registrations. Some rough calculations. Very rough, I’m just guessing here. Assuming the average car stays registered for 6 years or 72 months and assuming that registrations are even over the year (not a good assumption, but the best I’ve got), that means that every month, 1/72 or 1.39% of the total population of cars gets registered. So even if the monthly registrations increase by 50% for three months, that is still only a total increase of around 2%.
The articles I looked at were: