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Transportation

How Transit Can Speed Houston's Recovery

Yes, the city does have a mass transit system. And it will need it.
With 500,000 to 1 million cars destroyed, some Houstonians will be riding bus for the first time in the coming days and weeks.
With 500,000 to 1 million cars destroyed, some Houstonians will be riding bus for the first time in the coming days and weeks.LM Otero/AP Photo

Hurricane Harvey hit one of the most famously auto-dependent places on Earth: nearly 91 percent of the commuters in the Houston metro travel alone by car to get to work. Somewhere between 500,000 to 1 million cars were destroyed by the storm, the most of any natural disaster in U.S. history.

Now, waitlists for rental cars are vertiginously long, gas prices are spiking, and the 32,000 who escaped flooding in shelters are now fanning out to other forms of temporary housing. Many Houstonians are grappling with how they’ll get to their jobs, their shattered homes, and to their children’s schools, minus car keys.