It’s Car Free Week in Massachusetts, and Gov. Deval Patrick and highway commissioner Frank DePaolo kicked off the enviro-friendly event by setting a drive-as-we-say, not-as-we-do example: They drove to work.
Traffic-watchers say Massachusetts drivers have responded in kind to the top leadership’s example — by driving to work as usual. The state Department of Transportation has been pushing the idea, joining more than 1,000 cities in 40 countries around the world in celebrating World Car Free Day on Sept. 22 with a weeklong advocacy campaign. Bay State drivers are asked to log onto a Web site and record their car-free travel. So far this week, there have been 12,000 nondriving miles logged, said MassDOT spokeswoman Cindi Roy.
But Marshall Hook, operations manager for MetroTraffic, which monitors traffic data for Web sites and media around Boston, said it hasn’t had a noticeable effect.
People probably figured that if it were really important, the people who said it was really important would be acting as if it were really important.