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- Land use: Parking and roads use valuable land resources.
- Transportation equity: Driving, with all of its expenses, costs the average U.S. household $7,000 per year per vehicle.
- Economics: Most of the money spent on driving leaves a local economy, weakening it.
- Community: Travelers outside of their cars interact more with their physical environment and each other.
- Safety: The presence of pedestrians and cyclists make our neighborhoods safer from crime. Conversely, 42,000 Americans are killed in car accidents every year.
- Health: Increasingly, Americans are suffering from weight-related illnesses. This is partly attributable to the decline in active transportation use and availability.
Building and encouraging alternatives to the single-occupant vehicle, or, for short "alternative transportation," is imperative. Some alternative transportation advocates have taken to using the term, sustainable transportation, instead of the previous, widely-used "alternative transportation" term to avoid sidelining their interest from the mainstream.
Many efficient, practical, and inexpensive sustainable transportation technologies already exist, meaning activism, policy work, and planning research is most often more crucial to developing sustainable transportation than technology development.