Friday’s Headlines

  • Without going into specifics, U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao told state transportation officials that she supports investing in infrastructure. The group, AASHTO, estimates that $4.6 trillion is needed to bring all systems up to an acceptable standard. Congress will have to lead the way, Chao said. (Washington Post)
  • Duke University threw up a major roadblock in front of the Durham-Orange, N.C. light rail line by deciding Thursday not to support it. Using eminent domain to take Duke-owned land for the project could be an option, according to one Durham city council member. (Herald-Sun)
  • The D.C. streetcar is three years old and will remain free for now, though those hoping for an extension will have to wait. (WTOP, WJLA) In other streetcar news, the Twin Cities’ Met Council formally added the 12-mile Riverview Corridor line to its transportation master plan, clearing the way for an environmental study. (Pioneer Press) And Portland streetcar service to Montgomery Park is scheduled to start this year. (Tribune)
  • Although it would only raise up to $60 million, a bill in the Georgia legislature to add a small fee to taxi, limousine and Uber and Lyft rides would provide state funding for transit for the first time ever. (AJC) On the flip side, a bill in Virginia could cost Richmond and other cities millions in transit funding by denying them access to funds aimed at improving air quality. (WCVE)
  • A new report lays out a plan for eliminating traffic deaths in San Diego by 2025. (CBS 8)
  • Las Vegas is going all in on “smart city” technology. (City Lab)
  • Wasn’t this a “Black Mirror” episode? China is working on a “social credit system” to rate its citizens on things like jaywalking. (News West)
  • New York’s Citi Bike system will add nearly 4,000 electric bikes to its 12,000-bike fleet — but charge $2 extra per ride on the much-loved pedal-assist speedsters. (Streetsblog)
  • These Rochester, Minn. residents probably don’t need to be driving at all, let alone in the snow. (KARE)
  • And, finally, we love this video about how great it is to be on a street with no cars — to the tune of “Total Eclipse of the Heart.”