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Who Really Needs A Car?

November 12, 2010
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This is the story of one man who accepted a challenge. I, Alex Rozier, embarked on a 24-hour journey of sacrifice that few would dare to consider:

It was at the beginning of this very year that I read the story of Adam Greenfield, a 29 year old single filmmaker from San Francisco. Greenfield made a resolution at a New Years Eve party in 2008 saying that he would not drive, or ride, in a car all of 2009. We’re talking about 365 days, every day, all day, all year. After that decision that he made on one cold December night, his life quickly became very simple at the dawn of the new year.

He spoke of why its so important to keep the roads from being so congested, depositing less exhaust into the environment, and saving money on gas. When he began the task he already believed we’re entering a time where oil will be hard to come by, and so expensive that few of us will be able to power the cars we drive.

This grand task got me thinking. I know I couldn’t go without a car for a year. I’m a student, my family lives several states away, and I work in a profession that requires me to chase the news wherever exists on any given day. But on this Thursday my schedule, for the most part, was very flexible, and I wanted to try something I honestly didn’t think I could do: Go without a car for one day.

"I know my challenge was on a much smaller scale than Greenfield's. But the goal was to change my way of thinking. Turns out, it worked." Plus the MKT Trail is much more scenic.

I realized I wanted to make a community-wide effort to stop the use of vehicles throughout Columbia. I realized how hard the city is working to provide people with an opportunity to access trails and bike lanes if the citizens do pursue a more eco-friendly life change.

My house is roughly 12 minutes from campus by car, on the north side of Columbia, but the trail system now connects nearly all the way to right outside my front door. The MKT trail can take you almost anywhere throughout Mid-Missouri. Also, if you’re is looking to save on gas, Columbia Transit has stop locations throughout the city.

“Well, I did it. When I needed to travel, it just took a little planning ahead of time. It wasn’t easy to adjust, but just look how much I learned! One thing is certain — if you’re going green by temporarily giving up your car — Columbia, Missouri is the best town to try it.”

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