Creating Connected Communities: A Guidebook for Improving Transportation Connections for Low- and Moderate-Income Households in Small and Mid-Sized Cities
This guidebook is intended to provide elected officials, city staff members, community leaders, and other decisionmakers in small and mid-sized cities with a menu of strategies for improving the transportation choices available to low- and moderate-income households. On average, transportation is the second largest household expenditure after housing, and transportation costs are directly related to a key characteristic of housing: location, including proximity to employment, schools, and other essential destinations. By creating connected communities where residents have access to affordable housing and can safely and conveniently meet their daily needs on foot, bicycle, public transit, or in a car, cities can help reduce households’ transportation costs, connect workers to jobs, and facilitate upward mobility. Providing access to alternative modes of transportation is particularly important for households without a car, a category that includes 9 percent of all U.S. households and 18 percent of households earning less than $35,000. In addition to improving mobility for households with limited access to vehicles, creating connected communities with multiple transportation options can benefit all residents by promoting health and safety, contributing to a more resilient local economy, and improving the efficiency of public spending.