The reality is that AVs will massively increase the infestation of tin boxes, it’s just that humans won’t be driving them.
Why is this? I’ll explain. It has often been claimed that on-demand AVs would mean less traffic and therefore less crowded, friendlier streets – an occasional pod full of rooibos-sipping hipsters drifting by, an Amazon robot or two, but little more. In fact, the reverse is true. There would indeed be fewer cars – a lot fewer, in fact – but a huge increase in traffic: by nearly 50 percent (more on that figure below).
This counter-intuitive outcome is because of the inconvenient truth about private car ownership: the average driver-owned tin box is stationary in driveways and car parks nearly all of the time…
But on-demand, autonomous vehicles would be in constant use, with many filling the revenue void left by the closure of car parks.