My vote goes to the suburban life being improved more by autonomous cars and on-demand. Visions of efficient cities driven by autonomous cars that travel narrow streets shouldered by broad sidewalks completely misses the hard part of delivery, curb to door.
When you have to go up to an apartment on a three-flight walk-up or to the 45th floor of a skyscraper, what happens to the autonomous cars? Is everyone going to wait on the curb for deliveries? Someone has to carry things. Perhaps a new generation of bellmen, but that doesn’t appeal to most kids.
In the suburbs and iter-city communities between major urban hubs, autonomous cars could help service delivery that have been common in cities. It is helpful to remember that today’s typical worker enjoys a private car in many societies only 120 years after private vehicles were the province of the elite. Suburbs have grown up during that same time.
The future lies at the edges, not just the centers of cities.