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US is addicted to inferior transportation design

No.1441405 ViewReplyOriginalReport
Cars are noisy, dirty, unhealthy, expensive, and they clutter everything up.
Cars were supposed to make transportation more convenient. But istead of designing transportation around living spaces, we've come to design our life around commutes. Every commercial building needs space for parking spots in front. Every city block needs a big, unsightly parking lot. Two hour commutes doing nothing but staring at asphalt are increasingly common. Even our solutions to problems caused by the ubiquity of personal automobile ownership feel more like patches on a gaping wound; we'll electrify them, build underground road networks, build 20 lane highways, build highrise just to store our cars. And it's been actively harmful in many ways; widespread access to personal vehicles has been an excuse to allow concentration of wealth in cities and thus geographic separation of economic classes.
If we had to do society in the US all over again, we would make it so transportation could be an afterthought rather than an ever present concern for each person.
That's not to say people who are particularly enthusiastic about driving or otherwise live in some exceptional circumstance shouldn't have access to a vehicle. But surely it isn't best that we are averaging more than one vehicle per household.
How did we get here and how do Americans break our addiction to personal vehicle ownership?