MIT professor Carlo Ratti and data scientist John Rossant warned in a San Francisco Chronicle joint op-ed this weekend that robotaxis will be a blight on American cities. Their proof? That ridesharing has been a blight on American cities. The result of rideshare, particularly inexpensive rideshare like Uber Pool, has been a reduction in walking, biking, and public transit at the expense of more cars on streets. The goal was less traffic, and it actually made traffic worse. Ratti and Rossant believe robotaxis will only exacerbate the issue.
“Uber Pool was so cheap it increased overall city travel: For every mile of personal driving it removed, it added 2.6 miles of people who otherwise would have taken another mode of transportation.”
Do robotaxis really have an upside?
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