Do we need public transport if people work from home?

Some interesting statistics on working from home are coming out of the US:

Between 1980 and 2000, the number of home-based workers doubled to 4.2 million. That reflects a pace of growth that is three-times the rate of the general workforce. A research paper by Gerald S. Oettinger cites two big reasons. First, as women’s share of the labor force grew, some found home-based work arrangements more agreeable to their lifestyle. Second, the Internet, mobile phones, and teleconferencing software made it easier to connect from the home office.

Home work is growing not only by population but also by duration. The average hours of work at home grew to 3 hours from 2.5 hours between 2003 and 2010, and it grew most for upper-middle class workers with a bachelor’s degree.

There’s every reason to expect the trend to accelerate, especially within Pabilonia’s second category — the telecommuting worker staying home in a big city with crowded transportation. In New York City, for example, self-employment and freelance work accounted for two thirds of the job growth between 1975 and 2007, according to the Chicago Fed. For more people, one should think, the office of the future is the living room of the present.

The new ultra fast broadband network will make it a lot easier to work from home. The world is changing rapidly, so isnt it time to start designing for the future not the past?

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