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Public Transportation

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In 2010, the Whitehall Senior Center, an activity and meals hub for seniors in Whitehall, was trying to unload a bus and a van it had been using to transport its patrons and residents of a nearby assisted-living home. The Montana Department of Transportation had designated the center that area’s agency to provide state-funded public transportation for seniors and people with disabilities. But the center was finding the state’s reporting system and other requirements too cumbersome.

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Miami’s public transportation system is the largest in Florida and includes buses, trolleys, Metromover and Metrorail. Both the Miami Trolley and Metromover are free to use and aid in visiting the mainland portions of Miami, such as Little Havana, Wynwood and Brickell City Centre. That being said, both are limited in geographical scope and — notably — don’t connect to Miami Beach or South Beach.

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Photo Credit: Alamy Stock Photo

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And the institute expects the congestion problem to get even worse. According to their projections, the average commuter will spend 62 hours in traffic by the year 2025, and the national congestion cost will balloon to $200 billion that same year, a 20% increase over the $166 billion related to traffic costs in 2017.

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Across the entire U.S., only 46 percent of people feel that their city offers good public transportation. However, in cities like Chicago, San Francisco and New York, more than 70 percent of residents approve of their mass transit options.Residents in cities with the best public transportation frequently use it. The average U.S. resident completes just 31 public transit trips per year, but ridership in cities with the best public transportation options is 2 to 7 times higher. The average New Yorker makes 228 trips per year.Depending on the city, Americans with disabilities and parents with strollers might find it difficult to travel by public transportation. Fortunately, many of the cities with the best transit systems are 100 percent ADA accessible.By reducing the number of passenger vehicles on the road, public transportation helps reduce pollution and improve air quality in cities. Cities that use electricity to power their trains, buses and other mass transit vehicles see even greater benefits. New York and San Francisco lead the pack—in these cities, more than half of all total passenger miles traveled are powered by electric sources.

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