Los Angeles

UMR Index


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Score: 61.5%

Sustainable Mobility


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Score: 45.7%

Public Transit


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Score: 48.4%

Population 13.9 million
Surface area (km2) 6,351
Population-density (people/km2) 2,184
GDP per capita ($) 86,459
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What Los Angeles Does Well in Urban Mobility

Top universities and government investment make Los Angeles a hub for mobility innovation and advancement, most notably with the city's plan to introduce new forms of air mobility for the 2028 Olympic Games. The Federal Aviation Administration has outlined a plan to regulate air mobility by 2028.

With high government investment in electric vehicle (EV) charging stations and generous incentives programs, Los Angeles and California are well on their way to meeting the state's goal of ending the sale of all combustion engine cars by 2035. Los Angeles County has committed to building 10,000 charging stations at county facilities by 2030, with interim goals of 150 stations at public housing sites and 120 at multifamily housing sites by 2024.

Urban Mobility Readiness Index, Sustainable Mobility and Public Transit scores

Challenges and Opportunities for Los Angeles’ Transportation System

The city has historically high levels of car use, accounting for 93% of distance traveled, and is known for highly congested roads. In May 2023, Los Angeles implemented 27 new and upgraded traffic signals to better manage traffic flow.

The Los Angeles transit system suffers from low ridership levels due to slow commute speeds and low station density, which leads to long walks between stations. However, Los Angeles Metro’s 2020 plan outlines expanding the metro rail network to more than 200 stations over 285 kilometers.

Dimensions of the Urban Mobility Readiness Index score

How Los Angeles Can Improve Its Public Transportation and Sustainable Mobility

With four out of five trips in LA taken via personal car, the city lags behind its peer New York in car ownership, with LA residents owning nearly 2.5 times as many cars on average as New Yorkers. The city can discourage car usage by limiting car parking and introducing car-free zones to heavily walked areas. Los Angeles would need to offer alternative mobility options by promoting public transit, active mobility, and shared mobility. Los Angeles can build bike lanes, introduce car-free zones, heighten traffic enforcement, support bike-sharing, or subsidize e-bike purchases, to improve accessibility and safety. The Los Angeles Metro’s 2020 Long Range Transportation Plan includes $7 billion in funding for protected pedestrian and cycling infrastructure.

With Los Angeles' considerable area and reliance on personal cars for travel, the city lags behind its peers in public transit station density. Los Angeles can bolster its public transit network by introducing more stops and stations along its commuting lines. The city can increase its public transit offering by expanding the number of routes and stops to reach more residents – and an in-progress transit plan aims to double bus lines. Introducing bus lanes would lower commute times and encourage residents to take the bus to avoid the city's infamous traffic. In the long term, adding new metro stations will be key to building out Los Angeles' public transit offering, but that effort will be a more time-intensive and expensive undertaking. Increasing the number of stations and lines would make the public transit system more accessible to the city's residents and will help to increase ridership and lower car usage.

Comparative Urban Mobility Readiness Index scores