Make us your home page
Instagram

Park-and-ride carpooling's popularity rising

A study find that people who spend a lot of time with friends and place a higher value on socializing are more likely to carpool or take public transportation than those who spend more time alone.

iStockphoto.com

A study find that people who spend a lot of time with friends and place a higher value on socializing are more likely to carpool or take public transportation than those who spend more time alone.

Commuting is a big part of the day for the American worker. According to Thomas Tiemann, the Jefferson Pilot professor of economics at Elon University, we're changing how we get to work in the 21st century. Tiemann, who co-authored a study published in the journal Transportation (May 2012) that examined weekday commuting decisions of full-time American workers between 2003 and 2009, said one of the commuter issues that showed the most change was carpooling.

"What surprised us most in our research wasn't that there were more carpools as a result of rising gas prices, but how the carpools themselves had changed," he said.

According to the statistics, commuters were less likely to take part in a traditional carpool — where one person picks up passengers — and more likely to use a park-n-pool carpool, which has each commuter traveling to a designated spot to form the carpool.

Roughly 750,000 commuters used park-n-pool on any given workday in 2003, according to the research. By 2008, that number had risen to nearly 4 million commuters.

"They came up with these modern carpools because people had already arranged their lives as if they were going to drive alone," he said. "It would be very difficult for them to take public transportation because they've built these houses or rented apartments far from public transportation."

Other discoveries from Tiemann's study include:

• Those who can ride with friends of the same sex and job levels are more likely to be part of a carpool.

• Between the beginning of 2003 and end of 2008 gas prices roughly doubled. In that same period, driving alone decreased 6.7 percent.

• Married commuters were more likely to drive alone and less likely to carpool or use alternative modes like public transportation.

• Mothers were less likely to take public transportation or carpool so they can spend more time with their children.

• Those who need to run errands at the end of the day or tend to household duties were more likely to drive alone.

• People who spend a lot of time with friends and place a higher value on socializing are more likely to carpool or take public transportation than those who spend more time alone.

The data used in Tiemann's study comes from the American Time Use Survey, and included 13,615 full-time workers who were asked to keep track of their activities during a 24-hour period.

Park-and-ride carpooling's popularity rising 02/24/13 [Last modified: Monday, February 25, 2013 5:02pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, Chicago Tribune.
    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Starbucks to close all Teavana locations, including five in Tampa Bay

    Retail

    Local Teavana locations include Tyrone Square in St. Petersburg, International Plaza and Westfield Citrus Park in Tampa, Brandon and Clearwater.

    Starbucks announced Thursday plans to shut down all 379 Teavana stores, citing "underperformance." Starbucks acquired the mall-based tea chain for $620 million in 2012. [ CANDICE CHOI | AP file photo]
  2. Trigaux: Closing Iron Yard coding school hits area tech hard but leaders talk of options

    Business

    The coming shutdown this fall of the Iron Yard software coding school in downtown St. Petersburg — announced this month as part of a national closing of all 15 Iron Yard locations — remains a shocking event to a Tampa Bay technology community that dreams big of becoming a major player in the Southeast if not …

    In better days last fall, friends and family of graduates at The Iron Yard, based in the Station House in downtown St. Petersburg, applaud during "Demo Day" when grads of the coding school show off their skills. Despite the local success and strong job placement by the coding school, The Iron Yard is closing all of its 15 locations across the country this summer. [LARA CERRI   |   Times]
  3. U.S. economy gathers steam in second quarter

    Business

    WASHINGTON — The U.S. economy revved up this spring after a weak start to the year, fueled by strong consumer spending. But the growth spurt still fell short of the optimistic goals President Donald Trump hopes to achieve through tax cuts and regulatory relief.

    A government report released Friday showed economic output picked up in the second quarter. 
[Associated Press file photo]
  4. Founder of Tampa home sharing platform questions Airbnb, NAACP partnership

    Business

    TAMPA — A Tampa rival to Airbnb, which was launched because of discrimination complaints on the dominant home sharing platform, has concerns about the new partnership between Airbnb and NAACP announced this week.

    Rohan Gilkes poses for a portrait at his home and business headquarters in Tampa. 

Innclusive, a Tampa-based start-up, is a home-sharing platform that focuses on providing a positive traveling experience for minorities. [CHARLIE KAIJO | Times]
  5. Appointments at Port Tampa Bay and Tampa General Medical Group highlight this week's Tampa Bay business Movers & Shakers

    Business

    Government

    Port Tampa Bay announced that Jamal Sowell has been named director of special projects. Sowell, a former member of the U.S.Marine Corps, will support internal, external and special projects, assist the executive team with management oversight and serve as a liaison on a variety of port …

    Port Tampa Bay announced this week that Jamal Sowell has been named director of special projects. [Handout photo]