From the Oregonian, 08.20.07:
Less driving is more cash for PortlandBike commuting is not only fun and healthy, it is also economical. But many of us already knew that.
Urban living - The metro area saves on mileage, a study finds, and mostly uses it to fill the local economy's tank
Because Portland-Vancouver drivers log 20 percent fewer miles a day than most U.S. urban dwellers and spend less on cars and gasoline as a result, the region's economy saves $2.6 billion a year, or about 3 percent of the area's annual economic output, according to a new study for the Chicago-based CEOs for Cities.
And most of that money, which otherwise would go to far-flung car makers and oil companies, appears to go instead to housing, entertainment and food in the Portland-area economy.
"It stimulates local businesses rather than rewarding Exxon or Toyota," says the five-page report titled "Portland's Green Dividend" and authored by Portland economist Joe Cortright.
It raises the question of how much it costs Americans to live in cities that require residents to drive for nearly all their daily needs. Though transit, bicycling and walking are relatively minor contributors to Portland's savings, the study implies that development patterns that shorten commutes and facilitate walking, bicycling and using transit can have a positive economic impact. (Read more.)
Visit: Paul Dorn's Bike Commuting Tips