MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – City planners and transportation officials in the Twin Cities unveiled an action plan Tuesday that seeks to remove 20,000 cars from the metro area within the next five years.

The plan was developed by the Shared-Use Mobility Center (SUMC), a national nonprofit dedicated to increasing the use of bikeshare, carshare and rideshare programs in communities across the United States.

Joined by the Metropolitan Council, Ride Nice Minnesota, The McKnight Foundation and others, the SUMC laid out the Twin Cities-focused plan that seeks to shift homes away from single-occupant vehicles and toward ridesharing and public transit.

More People, More Cars, More Congestion

According to the Met Council, the Twin Cities metro is expected to add more than 800,000 residents by 2040, outpacing the growth of other large metro areas, such as New York City and Los Angeles.

The increase in population is expected to bring about 675,000 personal vehicles to Twin Cities roads. The increase is cars would likely lead to nasty congestion, increased carbon dioxide emissions and an overall decrease in the quality of life for area residents.

What’s The Plan?

The SUMC plan seeks to reduce the number of the cars coming to the metro area. Over the next five years, the plan aims to cut the number of cars in Minneapolis and St. Paul by 20,000 – a 5 percent reduction in the number of personal vehicles.

The strategy to make this possible involves encouraging 30,000 more people to take public transit daily, sustaining 600 carshare vehicles, adding 800 bikes to the Nice Ride program, and fostering 1,000 daily vanpool users.

If this initial plan proves successful, the next goal would be to get 50,000 cars off Twin Cities roadways in the next decade. That’d be a 8-10 percent reduction of the number of cars in Minneapolis and St. Paul. It’d be a 3 percent reduction in the number of cars across the entire metro region.

Concern For All Minnesotans

As the Twin Cities metro is expected to grow, the authors of the plan cautioned area leaders to make sure developments in transportation don’t only benefit affluent, white Minnesotans.

Citing Urban Institute estimates, SUMC says that people of color will make up 40 percent of Twin Cities population by 2040.

As such, the nonprofit is encouraging transportation officials to make sure future developments are accessible to many communities and planned with diversity in mind.

Comments (5)
  1. I got a pick-up with a V8 and a house with land. Gas will be cheep forever because of North Dakota. Living in a small box and riding the train is for losers. You can count me and my kids out on this commie left wing nut job idea.

  2. Dave Feiker says:

    Freedom is being able to travel where you want when you want. No public transportation plan can satisfy that for every person. How about using the taxes collected from motorists for roads and better infrastructure for drivers, rather than spend it on those that do not contribute by not paying gas taxes. How about providing free travel to socialist countries for the socialists. Then we only have to pay for them once. The light rail system must be subsidised to stay functioning, money paid by motorists are going to other projects that do little to benefit motorists. The problem is not congestion, it is poor design and social engineering that few want but all have to deal with. We have a decent public transportation that is flexible and can change routes, grow and shrink as needed. People can buy their own bikes, or obtain any number of used bikes. I got mine for free that no one wanted anymore because it was collecting dust in their garage. Eliminating roads for bikes that can really only be used part of the year is also a waste. Let bike licensing and its revenue pay for bike projects. Limit your spending to what is generated. Don’t take money collected from motorists for your feel good projects. Let them sustain themselves. People vote with their dollars too, and I guess just as you ignore the voters, you also ignore where the money comes from and use it for your own devices.

  3. Nice ride bikes are not available all year.