Some people worry that Uber is causing more traffic congestion.

Infographic: Are Rideshares Taking Over the Streets?

May 14, 2020

by Jeffrey Winters

In some cities, there’s a concern that drivers working for ridesharing companies such as Uber or Lyft have contributed to traffic congestion. It’s difficult to get reliable data from the companies, but recently three researchers extracted trip data from a Federal Highway Administration survey.
Overall, the researchers found a small impact from rideshares, which accounted for far less than 1 percent of trip miles traveled. Even so, the introduction of ridesharing in a city did increase traffic and associated tailpipe emissions, due to the fact that some 45 percent of rideshare trips replaced trips by low- or zero-emissions modes, such as walking, biking, or taking the bus. In New York City, for instance, 55 percent of passengers in Uber or Lyft vehicles would have simply walked.
But in the city where ridesharing increased traffic the most—San Francisco—the rise was just 1.4 percent in vehicle miles traveled and 2.2 percent in greenhouse gas emissions.
Below are the data for a number of American cities.

 
 

You are now leaving ASME.org