Taking the Wheel (Trends Report)
Taking the Wheel: Getting ABQ from here… to there (PDF) is a recent report released by MRCOG in partnership with the Urban Land Institute’s New Mexico District Council. It was written with the intent of bringing the national discussion about how shifting demographics are shaping housing and transportation trends to the local level. The report draws upon new survey information from MRCOG and the City of Albuquerque, along with a wealth of national research.
The report highlights several key findings:
- Albuquerque residents drive 10 percent fewer miles per day on average than they did 10 years ago, meanwhile over the same time period transit ridership has doubled.
- The majority of people living in the Albuquerque metropolitan area desire to live in areas that are walkable, close to shopping and entertainment, and possess other key elements commonly associated with urban areas.
- The report finds that similar to national trends, Millennials in the area take fewer trips, go shorter distances, and are more likely than previous generations to bike, walk, and use transit.
- While most pronounced among Millennials, a preference for more urban living is a common sentiment across all age groups.
About the Report Findings
To be clear, generational preferences are not universal (not all Millennials want the same things) and single family homes and personal vehicles will continue to be a vital part of how we live and get around. However, even small shifts in preferences can have dramatic impacts, and the report demonstrates that these shifts are real and likely to persist. This raises some important questions; As Millennials continue to enter the housing market and many Baby Boomers choose to downsize, will the Albuquerque area be able to offer what they want? Will it provide convenient choices when it comes to getting around? The report concludes with a set of policy options and strategies that may be effective in getting ABQ from here… to there.