Thursday, January 13, 2011

How a snow storm affects an auto-free commute

For a guy who gave up his car at the beginning of the year, the snow and ice that has shut down Atlanta this entire week was a blessing and a curse. It was a blessing because getting in a car means taking your life in your hands. Unlike cities that get lots of snow every winter, Atlanta simply isn't equipped to scrape and salt even the major roads.
It was a curse because the walk to MARTA today in 18 degree temperatures on icy sidewalks was treacherous. Bus service was shut down for two days, and is gradually ramping back up. The rail lines are running with moderate delays. My commute has taken a bit longer than normal, but not drastically.
One of the silver linings to this event is that I have noticed a lot of new walking and MARTA commuters. It confirms my belief that the best way to get people out of their cars and to drive less is a major event, whether man made (the 1996 Olympics) or natural (snow storm). Here are some great links from the 2011 Winter Ice Storm. Enjoy!