Driven Apart: How sprawl is lengthening our commutes and why misleading mobility measures are making things worse, our most recent study released last week, is generating some surprises in cities across the country.

Following a press conference last Wednesday, the headlines in major cities had a common theme – traffic isn’t as bad as we originally thought. The report takes a hard look at the Urban Mobility Report, an industry standard used to justify billions of dollars in expenditures to build new roads and highways, and the conclusions are far different than those of the UMR.

Headlines such as the Chicago Tribune’s “Your Commute Could Be Worse,” Streetsblog’s “Want to Ease Commuter Pain? Highways and Sprawl Won’t Help,” WTOP’s “ DC Traffic Not So Bad” and the Infrastructurist’s “Are We Building New Roads and Highways Based on Incorrect Data?” all support Driven Apart’s key message that compact cities are the real answer to reducing traffic delays.

During the press conference, Rockefeller Foundation Associate Director Benjamin de la Peña said spending on transportation infrastructure should be treated as investments, and our choice of investments must be guided by the right metrics and framed by clear national goals. To read all of his comments, click here.

Driven Apart adds to the growing body of evidence that shows compact development that puts many destinations close at hand has unexpected benefits — in this case, less time spent in traffic requiring less spending on highways.

How we measure transportation systems matters, and the nation needs a better set of measures than it has today.

Click here to view the Executive Summary and technical report.