Benefits of Public Transportation for Illinois
Public Transportation in the State of Illinois is a critical part of maintaining economically sound, energy efficient, and environmentally sustainable communities. Robust public transportation systems improve the quality of life for residents of the community. Illinois has one of the largest public transportation systems in the country in the Chicago metropolitan area. Additionally, downstate urban and rural public transportation systems are accessible to citizens in nearly every downstate county, providing access to jobs, healthcare, educational institutions, shopping and more.
Consider these facts from the American Public Transportation Association:
- Every $1 invested in public transportation generates approximately $4 in economic return
- Every $1 billion invested in public transportation supports and creates more than 50,000 jobs.
- Each year, an individual can achieve an average annual savings of more than $10,000 by taking public transportation instead of driving and by living with one less car.
- Public transportation in this country is a $61 billion industry, employing more than 400,000 people.
- Public transportation in the United States reduces our nation's carbon emissions by 37 million metric tons annually. This is equivalent to Washington, DC; New York City; Atlanta; Denver and Los Angeles combined eliminating the use of electricity.
- A single commuter switching his or her commute to public transportation can reduce a household's carbon emissions by 10% and up to 30% if he or she eliminates a second car.
- Public transportation use in the United States saves 4.2 billion gallons of gasoline annually, reducing our country's reliance on foreign oil.
- In 2014, Americans took 10.8 billion trips on public transportation - the highest in 58 years.
- Over the past 10 years, public transit ridership is up 39%, outpacing population growth and vehicle miles traveled (VMT).