Car Free Round Three- Hempstead, NY

Hempstead, New York, is the final city covered by our World Car Free Day Blog Frenzy.  Hempstead is located about 20 miles outside of New York City, in Nassau County on Long Island. There are 22 incorporated villages that fall entirely, or partially, within the town limits. If all villages were combined and incorporated into a city, the total population would be 787,033, which would make it the second largest city in New York.

According to Gas Buddy, average gas prices on Long Island are about $3.90/gallon. Using this price, we used Abogo’s gas slider to compute the transportation costs for an average household.

A typical household will spend around $886/month on transportation costs, which is not exceedingly bad.  Nonetheless, this is a 16 percent rise in costs from the average in 2000. There are some good opportunities for residents to lower their transportation costs. For commuters into New York City or other parts of Long Island, the Long Island Railroad runs frequently and to many destinations. Monthly passes range anywhere from $82-$284, depending on the destination.  The commute into New York City takes about an hour and half, while taking a car would take about an hour. Although there is a small discrepancy in commute times between the two options, taking the LIRR has the benefit of enabling passengers to catch up on some work, read a newspaper, or enjoy some down-time en route. Escaping rush hour traffic on those notorious Long Island expressways is an added advantage.

Buses connect Hempstead to neighboring cities on Long Island. The Rosa Park Hempstead Transit Center provides an indoor waiting area for days when waiting outside isn’t an option. Walk Score gives the village a rating of 78 out of100, which equates to “very walkable” using their criteria. Biking is another great way to cover short distances within the village. Another option to limit the impact of using a private car is a car-sharing program at Hofstra University.

After researching Hempstead, we’re curious to see how you or your family compares. Do you live in a similar city? How do gas prices affect your transportation? Are the alternatives to driving in your area feasible? What are some other suggestions for reducing transportation costs? If you happen to reside near Hempstead, we would love to hear how this compares to your experiences.

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