Metropolis interviews William J. Mitchell, director of the Smart Cities research group at MIT's Media Lab. Not surprisingly, the issues MIT discovered when attempting to redesign the car were related more to redesigning cities and streets.
In the interview, Mitchells says, "You also improve the quality of streets enormously. These vehicles are silent, so you get rid of traffic noise, which has huge architectural implications, because windows no longer have to be defensive barriers against traffic noise. We get rid of local tailpipe pollution. There are all kinds of urban and street-design opportunities in taking the released space and putting it to other uses, like trees, seats, cafés. Streets are now more supportive of these things, so they're much more pleasant places."