Moving around suburbs costs more

An article in today’s San Francisco Chronicle titled S.F. transportation costs lower than in suburbs quotes a report being released by the Urban Land Institute with the all-encompassing title of “Bay Area Burden: Examining the costs and impacts of housing and transportation on Bay Area residents, their neighborhoods and the environment.”

Not that we didn’t know this already, but it says that “the average San Francisco household spends roughly $500 less on transportation each month than households in such suburban outposts as Antioch or Livermore.” All the talk about the inherent costs and problems associated with suburban life is great, but it’s the hard numbers that often drive the point home.

For families in more distant automobile-reliant suburbs, though, the monthly transportation costs spike. The estimate for Antioch is $1,311, for instance, while in Livermore it’s $1,281. Cities with little connection to transit also suffer – such as Pacifica, where a household’s monthly transportation is estimated to cost $1,246.

Read the whole article, it’s a good one to quote the next time someone tells you they live in the suburbs because it’s cheaper. Also check out the full report at Also, check out the recent article Investment in public transit creates U.S. jobs for new green economy in The Hill.


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