Friday’s Headlines

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  • Eighty percent of Capital Bikeshare’s users are white, and 90 percent of its stations are in white neighborhoods. (DCist) With transportation equity (or the lack thereof) in the news a lot lately, maybe that’s why Lyft is offering free rides (up to $10) to African-American historical and cultural sites in New York, Atlanta, Chicago and L.A. for Black History Month. (The Grio)
  • D.C. Metro is considering subsidizing ride-hailing trips in lieu of extending hours, which the transit agency says would jeopardize train and track maintenance. (Washington Post)
  • The Charlotte Area Transit system is moving toward opting for bus rapid transit over rail along I-77. Light rail is out, although CATS hasn’t completely given up on negotiations with Norfolk-Southern to use its freight tracks, even though the company doesn’t seem interested in sharing. The BRT line between Charlotte and Mooresville could open in five to 10 years. (WCNC)
  • Crosscut profiles Barb Chamberlain, bike advocate turned director of active transportation for the Washington State DOT.
  • A $101-million air-quality bill in the Utah legislature could fund a fare-free transit pilot program. (Deseret News)
  • Missouri splits a meager $1.7 million in state funding for public transit among 34 different local agencies. (Democrat News)
  • Even conservatives are turning on Streetsblog nemesis Randal O’Toole’s anti-transit rhetoric. (Urban Milwaukee)
  • The Des Moines City Council killed a road diet based on the fallacious belief that road diets slow down emergency vehicles. They often improve response times. (Register)
  • We got excited when we saw a headline saying Idaho’s Republican Gov. Brad Little is in favor of “more money for transit,” but then we found out that by “transit,” he meant high-occupancy lanes for cars. (BoiseDev)
  • Popular Science says computers can learn to be better drivers than humans. Great, let’s put them in charge of our missile defense system.
  • Need a laugh? Check out these 18 terrible parking jobs. (Carbuzz)

Thursday’s Headlines

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  • Only a month after taking office and a week after the Green New Deal highlighted the need for more passenger rail, California Gov. Gavin Newsom is drastically scaling back a San Francisco-to-Los Angeles high-speed rail line. (City Lab; more at Streetsblog CAL)
  • The Washington Post editorial board buys into D.C. Metro officials’ argument that extending hours will make the transit system less safe by cutting into the amount of time available for maintenance. Metro’s safety committee is scheduled to vote today on a resolution to keep the current hours.
  • Pretty much everyone in San Antonio has given up on building light rail. Well, bus rapid transit it is. (Express News)
  • Traffic deaths are rising in Dallas and Houston, but they’re slowly declining in Austin even as the city has grown. Still, Austin’s rate of traffic deaths is nine times higher than New York City’s. (Monitor)
  • Two Twin Cities rail lines had more riders than ever in 2018, but overall Metro Transit ridership was down. Officials said low gas prices, a bus driver shortage, construction and a fare increase were responsible for the dip. (Fox 9)
  • Philadelphia now has an interactive online map showing where construction is blocking sidewalks. (Enquirer)
  • Georgia lawmakers are fast-tracking a bill requiring drivers to stop for school buses where kids are getting on or off in the opposite lane. They relaxed the requirement last year, but now fear that if they don’t act, children will die. (AJC)
  • Ditching your car and Ubering everywhere doesn’t make financial sense, but if you mix in transit, bike-shares and scooters, it might. (Motor Trend)
  • Cupertino, Calif., now has bright orange flags pedestrians can wave in front of drivers right before they get pancaked because the city did nothing to slow down drivers. (San Jose Mercury News)
  • Happy Valentine’s Day! Six Uber drivers who’ve seen it all give you their relationship advice. (Bustle)

Wednesday’s Headlines

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  • Biking is affordable, healthy and zero-emission. That’s why it should be added to the Green New Deal. (Mobility Lab) The plan, in its current version, is also a missed opportunity to rethink the suburbs. (City Lab)
  • Data collected by University of Waterloo researchers can help urban planners choose the best places for bike lanes. (Phys.org)
  • With the Federal Highway Trust Fund depleted, South Carolina should prioritize transit funding, opines the Charleston Post and Courier. Currently the state spends just $37 million on buses and bike and pedestrian infrastructure.
  • Republicans will face a “tough vote” if Democrats send a gas-tax hike to the floor. (Politico)
  • Raising tolls, adding tolls to more roads, fees on electric and hybrid vehicles, raising registration fees and charging drivers per mile are among the alternatives to raising the gas tax in Ohio. (Plain Dealer)
  • Fort Worth’s new TEXRail commuter train is so popular that residents want to see it expanded. A combination of lack of right-of-way and busy freight lines make expansion difficult, though. (Star-Telegram)
  • New York lawmakers are seeking $100 million to upgrade Buffalo’s Metro Rail system. (News)
  • Related to Tuesday’s headlines on transportation equity, Lyft and the city of Oakland are bringing discounted transit passes and a “bike library” to underserved areas. (Curbed)
  • Students at Atlanta’s Grady High School held a rally for safer streets on the anniversary of a driver killing a student who was crossing the street on her bike. (Intown Paper)
  • Forbes assures us that autonomous cars won’t increase congestion by just driving around the block over and over rather than paying to park. That’s a relief.

Tuesday’s Headlines

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  • Cycling deaths are up nationwide — especially in the Southeast — but cities like New York, Portland and Washington, D.C., are bucking the trend by investing heavily in bike infrastructure, according to a new study. (Bicycling) The League of American Bicyclists report, also covered by Streetsblog, suggests that encouraging walking and biking could help solve the nation’s obesity crisis, too. (Forbes)
  • Bike facilities could be a powerful tool for equity, but they’re not being used that way. Although workers who make less than $10,000 are the largest bloc of people who bike to work, and the majority of people who bike in low-income neighborhoods are non-white, urban investment in bike infrastructure tends to neglect them in favor of wealthy riders, says one Harvard expert. (WTOP)
  • Poor people and people of color on foot or on bikes are the most likely to be hurt in a traffic crash in Minneapolis, according to the city’s new Vision Zero study. (City Pages)
  • Des Moines is dramatically increasing its sidewalk construction, spending $60 million over the next 20 years to fill in 180 miles of gaps. (Register)
  • After spending the past five years or so disrupting the cab industry, Uber is disrupting itself by investing in scooters and bikes. (Bloomberg)
  • Philadelphia will never eliminate traffic deaths without more help from the Pennsylvania DOT, which controls the majority of the city’s most dangerous streets. (Inquirer)
  • By rejecting Prop 6 and opting not to repeal a gas-tax hike that funds transit as well as roads, California voters chose mobility over gridlock. (Mobility Lab)
  • Canada’s Globe and Mail kicks off a series on urban mobility with a piece on microtransit. (H/T to Streetsblog Denver)
  • After the Super Bowl debacle, Atlanta’s streetcar is the laughingstock of the nation. (Curbed)

Monday’s Headlines

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  • It lives! President Trump’s zombie infrastructure bill has been reanimated once again. (WaPo) But the real kickstart for infrastructure, according to Curbed, could be Sen. Ed Markey and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal, though it’s only a resolution for now, as Streetsblog reported.
  • With a federal deadline fast approaching, supporters of a Research Triangle light rail line continue to fret that Duke University’s opposition could kill it. (Raleigh News & Observer, Durham Herald-Sun, Duke Chronicle)
  • A Brookings Institute expert tells the Las Vegas Sun that a light-rail line could help that city avoid L.A.’s sprawling, traffic-choked fate.
  • Phoenix voters will decide the fate of 26 miles of proposed light rail in August. (3TV/CBS 5)
  • Taking the bus or a train is still a cleaner option, but Lyft’s “Green Mode” gives drivers and passengers the option to choose a hybrid or electric vehicle. (Smart Cities Dive)
  • A Maryland state senator wants a study on a light-rail line that would chop up to 24 minutes off commute times to Washington, D.C. (Independent)
  • Other bills in the Washington state legislature would jack up fines for drivers illegally using HOV lanes. (The Stranger)
  • A cycling group reports a big uptick in the number of tickets Philadelphia police are handing out to drivers who park in bike lanes. (KYWN)
  • This Baltimore resident’s car-free commute involves a train ride, a sick joke of a transit-oriented development, climbing two fences, walking through a field and jogging along five-lane roads with no sidewalks or crosswalks. (Greater Greater Washington)
  • Much like Waze helps drivers avoid police checkpoints, a new app aims to help them dodge parking regulations. (Forbes)
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