A new poll by AARP finds that while many Americans ages 50+ are trying to move away from car transportation as a result of high gas prices, their attempt to go “green” is challenged by inadequate sidewalks and bike lanes, as well as insufficient public transportation options. “More Americans age 50+ are trying to leave their cars behind but face obstacles as soon as they walk out the door, climb on their bikes or head for the bus,” said Elinor Ginzler, AARP Senior Vice President for Livable Communities.
Almost one of every three people (29%) polled say they are now walking as a way to avoid high gas prices.
I guess AARP does't know that lots of seniors have mobility difficulties. That walking and cycling on slick streets, not to mention waiting out in bad weather or in high or low temperatures until a bus arrives, may not be good for older people.
Maybe AARP doesn't know that grocery shopping on foot, by bike, or by bus means multiple trips and presents significant transport difficulties unless one can live on a half-filled bag of groceries a week. (Not even considering the weight problem, ever try juggling a full bag of groceries or two bags when getting on a bus, walking a couple of miles, or cycling? It ain't pretty.)
What would really be interesting is an AARP survey on how many seniors think walking, taking the bus or cycling are satisfactory answers for grocery shopping, going to the doctor or any of the other activities that are essential to their day to day living and welfare.
Actually AARP has done a survey that sort of says that. When the other 2/3rds of seniors weigh in they say the high price of gas is hurting them:
Almost all respondents are concerned about gas prices. More than two-thirds of respondents (67%) have limited their daily driving and more than six in ten (61%) have cut back on other expenses in order to accommodate high gas prices.
For the vast majority of seniors the answer is not walking, cycling or riding the bus, but lowering fuel prices by more drilling. A Pew Research poll in July found that 62% of Americans age 65 and older support drilling in ANWR.
AARP seems to have ignored what's in the best interest for the majority of seniors and gone on a wild goose chase after "cool" but inadequate alternatives.