Evidence suggests that declining per capita driving rates in recent years cannot be dismissed as a temporary byproduct of the Great Recession, the U.S. Public Interest Research Group Education Fund found in a study released Thursday.

Since it is clear the United States’ six-decade “driving boom” is over, policymakers should prioritize investments in rapidly expanding modes of transportation such as public transit and intercity rail and should dedicate highway funds to repairs and maintenance rather than to highway construction and expansion, the report suggests.

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