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Should Free Transportation Be Free For All City Residents? (Essay Sample)


The task was about prompting the writer to take an argumentative single side of the debate as to whether public transport should be free or not for all city residents.
this sample is to show my writing and originality abilities .


Topic: Transport Should Not Be Free For All City Residents
Student’s Name:
Transport Should Not Be Free For All City Residents
The discussion on whether public transport should be free or not for all city residents is ongoing among many communities and governments. Free public transport has been introduced in some cities of the world like Estonia in Tallinn, Hasselt in Belgium, in Germany and Slovenia. In the United States, public transport is free for a city like Commerce in California while in cities like Clemson in North Carolina, Lebanon in New Hampshire and Boone, North Carolina, there is a funding partnership between the governments, communities and universities. However, with high costs of maintenance, poor quality of free public transport and the impact it would have on the car industry, transport should not be free for all city residents.
The cost of running, maintaining and improving public transport service is high. The costs are incurred in procuring a service that will meet the increased transport demand for free riders. In Austin, Texas, one of the places described as having a major transport disaster was burdened with sustaining its public transport. There were increased costs of maintenance and demand for off-duty police in the buses drove the operating costs to unsustainable levels (Perone, 2002). These costs end up depleting tax revenues of the governments. The opportunity costs of running free fare transport systems is thus high and instead such monies should be used in providing for other necessary services such as health care.
Free public transport does not guarantee quality service. It would lead to increased ridership. This means one has to cope with the effects of overcrowding. Peak hours as riders go to and from working stations would be a disaster. Some people would have to cope with standing during travels. Safety in overcrowded systems will be a major concern. Hodge, Orrell and Strauss (1994), observe that there are riders who will enter into the free transit with a sole purpose of vandalism and harassing other riders. The convenience of travel will also be greatly affected and would not be equated to using own car. The public transit tends to take longer routes and make more stopovers. More time is wasted when walking to departures and from arrivals. The frequency of service and less reliability of public transport often makes people choose to use private cars or walk.
Free transport system would have the challenge of charging the polluter pay. With a less convenient public transport system, most city residents prefer either walking or cycling to work. In some countries where public transport is free like Germany, Netherlands and Belgium, more men and women are opting cycling (Pucher and Buehler, 2008). The polluter pays principle demands that the cost of environment pollution be paid first by the individual doing the pollution (Guzman, 2001). Free public transport however makes an all inclusive taxation for revenues of environmental control. This has made some individuals like cyclists pay for a problem they have not contributed to.
Free transport would cause negative effects in car industry. Car industry is a major source of revenue for governments and employment to manufacturers and service providers such as mechanics. Free public transport would cause a fall in demand for cars. Families would not need to have probably more than one car for convenience. Lesser cars would also mean lesser consumpti...
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