By Dan Shapley
American commuters are driving to work alone in increasing numbers, while the share of those taking mass transit or simply carpooling with a colleague is dropping. The latest Census report, showing that 77 percent of commuters drive to work alone, is perhaps predictable. After all, suburban sprawl born out of the American Dream of home ownership is still the dominant mode of constructing new communities in America. And once people have opted to live on their own isolated acres, they have little choice but to drive to town alone. But there are solutions. First, families neighbors can come to terms on strategies that save car trips. And many companies have incentives for employees who carpool. And then, for those shopping for a new home, there's always moving closer to work, or along a train or bus route. With gas prices on the rise, and showing few signs of reversing course, and a new generation of young people choosing cities over suburbs, it's possible that a more urban lifestyle could become the new American Dream, according to a story in the June 14 Los Angeles Times. And for those who stick to their cars, consider this: Nine cities are considering "congestion pricing" plans
that would charge drivers who take to the roads during rush hour.