Today’s Headlines

  • All Things Considered takes an in-depth look at high-speed rail (NPR)
  • Consumers, even those in Generation Y, support a ban on texting while driving (WSJ)
  • Florida’s new GOP senator is an environmentalist — but for how long? (TNR)
  • Another so-sad-it’s-funny conservative fairy tale: "Sustainable communities" means we’ll all live in hobbit-sized homes! (Heritage)
  • Pennsylvania DOT cancels pricey highway-widening project (Express-Times)
  • Distressing international rail news: China helping Burmese regime extend trains to border (Mizzima)

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

How Will a New FRA Rule Affect Commuter Rail?

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Misguided safety rules from the Federal Railroad Administration are cited as the cause for all sorts of problems, from high-construction costs to pedestrian hazards to, ironically, worse safety outcomes. Which helps explain why Jarret Walker at Network blog Human Transit is alarmed about a new rule “requiring two-person train crews… for most main line freight and […]

What If “Commuter Rail” Was for Everyone, Not Just 9-to-5 Commuters?

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Rhode Island has been investing in commuter rail — long distance service connecting Providence to Boston and towns in between. But lackluster ridership at a new park-and-ride rail station at the end of the line (by a Walmart!) is sapping support for much more useful investments, reports Sandy Johnston at Itinerant Urbanist. Anti-rail critics are piling on. The libertarian Rhode Island Center […]

The Inherent Shallowness of the Rail vs. Bus Debate

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Is every argument for buses also an argument against rail? It seems that, according to the half-baked logic of “anti-planner” Randall O’Toole, the answer is “yes.” The fervent rail opponent recently wrote that because Jarrett Walker at Human Transit penned an article arguing that race-based generalizations about bus travel are harmful, Walker must, ipso facto, […]

Sen. Frank Lautenberg, Rail Promoter, Announces Retirement

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Yesterday afternoon, Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), chair of the Senate Commerce Committee, announced that Frank Lautenberg would return as chair of the committee’s Surface Transportation, & Merchant Marine Infrastructure, Safety, & Security Subcommittee. This afternoon at 2:00 p.m., Lautenberg issued a statement that “improving passenger and high-speed rail service in America and on the Northeast Corridor is […]

The Split Between Pragmatic Conservatism and Anti-Transit Extremism

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In the final installment of a three-part series on Wisconsin’s sputtering tech sector, Bruce Thompson at Urban Milwaukee notes that his home state ranks near the bottom of Democratic-leaning states on the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation’s “New Economy Index.” If a strong start-up economy is linked to Democratic voting patterns, as ITI’s data shows, […]