Cities shouldn't reject growth in the name of climate mitigation
Building housing and transit is good despite construction emissions
In the United States, spending on mass transit is normally opposed by the political right, which is suspicious of spending money in general and has ideological and lifestyle objections to spending on mass transit in particular.
And beyond political opposition, American political institutions struggle to identify and fund projects that are cost-effective in terms of ridership. That’s in part because our construction costs are structurally very high, so even a project that would clearly generate large ridership (like Phase 2 of the Second Avenue Subway) has astronomical costs. And it’s partly because we have a land use paradigm that’s very hostile to transit usage, so we get things like Los Angeles building out a subway network without upzoning along the corridors.
In Germany, the cost situation is better and the historic land use patterns are different, so a city like Berlin has plenty of opportunities to pluck relatively low-hanging transit fruit.
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