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Driving Less: Reducing Vehicle-Miles Traveled (VMT) in the Land of Freeways

Updated: Nov 20, 2018

17 DEC 2014 (WED) | 19:00-20:00

Wang Gungwu Theatre, Graduate House, The University of Hong Kong.



Prof Susan Handy Chair of the Department of Environmental Science and Policy, Director of the National Center for Sustainable Transportation, The University of California, Davis, USA

Dr. Susan Handy is Chair of the Department of Environmental Science and Policy and the Director of the National Center for Sustainable Transportation at the University of California, Davis. Her research interests center on the relationships between transportation and land use, particularly the impact of neighborhood design on travel behavior. Her current work focuses on bicycling as a mode of transportation. She is a member of the Committee on Women’s Issues in Transportation of the Transportation Research Board and is an associate editor of the newly launched Journal of Transport and Health. She holds a B.S.E. in Civil Engineering from Princeton University, an M.S. in Civil Engineering from Stanford University, and a Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning from the University of California at Berkeley.



The State of California has set an ambitious goal for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. For the transportation sector, changes in vehicle and fuel technologies will get the state a long way towards its goal, but forecasts show that reductions in driving will also be necessary. State policy now requires Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) to adopt a Sustainable Communities Strategy that outlines the set of strategies the regions will implement to meet their targets for reductions in vehicle-miles traveled (VMT). In the absence of conclusive evidence on the effectiveness of possible strategies, MPOs are struggling to identify the set of strategies that offer the greatest potential for success. This presentation looks at three of the many questions underlying this struggle: Will the recent downturn in VMT take care of the problem? If not, which of the possible strategies are likely to help the most? In particular, will the current bicycling craze make a difference? Although much research remains to be done, existing evidence points to the need for a multi-faceted approach to reducing VMT.



Institute of Transport Studies, HKU (ITS)


20141217 Seminar Poster

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