– Here we are again. Gas prices are on the way up. In Rochester, we’re paying $3.82 a gallon, up 36 cents in last year.
As the price at the pump continues its steady rise, expect ride-sharing, public transportation and fuel-efficient vehicles to become more popular — as they did during previous price hikes.
But people here are reliant on their cars, and drivers tend to go back to their old, gas-gulping habits when prices go down again in the fall.
However, experts say we could see $4.50-per-gallon gas here — and $5 per gallon in the most expensive cities in the country.
And those record prices could be a catalyst for real change in our national motor-vehicle network, easing the way for cars powered by electricity, natural gas or other alternatives.
“When you get to $4.50 a gallon, the math [on a hybrid car] works,” said Tony Daily, general manager of the Towne Automotive Group. “At $3 a gallon, it doesn’t.”
In Monroe County, 7 percent of workers carpool and 2 percent take public transportation, according to the Census. The number of carpoolers has been dropping. In 1980 15 to 20 percent of us carpooled.
Do you see that changing if gas prices get to a certain level? The trend over the last 30 years says no.
– Yet another column in the Wall Street Journal about Kodak knocks Rochester:
Its digital imaging division, locked up in its headquarters in Rochester, always appeared to be under pressure to create synergies between film and digital. But doing digital from Rochester was always going to be a challenge.
– What’s the future of the telecommunications industry? One expert compares it to rise and fall of the railroad industry. Rochester is a mini-telecom hub, so it’s worth paying attention to this sector.
– The old “Hello Rochester” 13WHAM commercial that ran in the Oscars was a big hit. You can find more vintage stuff on the station’s Creative Services web page.
– What’s a news station to do when it has cellphone video of a mayor playfully slapping a woman’s butt?