Reconnecting America People * Places * Possibility

Resource Center

Transit Oriented Development and The Potential for VMT-related Greenhouse Gas Emissions Growth Reduction

This study also examines real-world potential to use transit and transit-oriented development as an emissions reduction strategy in three different future development scenarios for the Chicago metropolitan area. The first is business-as-usual. The second assumes that residential and employment growth will continue at the same rate in the city and in the suburbs, but that all of this growth will be accommodated in the half-mile radius around stations. The second scenario is based on growth
projections from Chicago’s regional planning agency. The third scenario explores concentrating housing and jobs within a half-mile radius of transit stations, regardless of growth projections. The second scenario reduces emissions by 28 percent from levels of emissions growth that would have taken place without those strategies, while the third scenario results in a 36 percent reduction from levels of emissions growth that would have taken place without those strategies. (The study assumes no additional investment in transportation and the same number of car owners). In short, transit-oriented development offers a way to build the future that provides for sustainability and affordability.