I haven't been able to read the Brookings Report that just came out, but an article in the Portland DJC alerts us to something interesting. Lancaster PA is second behind New York in VMT per capita. It seems as if its partially due to its low VMT overall.
I hadn't heard much about Lancaster before the Streetcar issues that have been going on there with the FTA but the little interaction I've had is with Google Earth. The first thing you notice (if you're a nerd like me) is that the major freeways stay relatively far away from the center of town, there is a grided street pattern throughout the city, making walking, biking and transit more likely, and the Amtrak station actually serves fairly frequent trains to Philadelphia.
Eisenhower was freaked out by the idea of freeways going through our cities. It was pushed through anyways as the people who took over the Interstate program showed no mercy in cities. Perhaps this is a case study of what happens when we keep them out.