Thursday’s Headlines

  • Can airline-style rewards bring riders back to public transit? Agencies from Portland to Philadelphia think they’ll help attract customers poached by ride-hailing services, but critics say such programs are distractions from real issues like frequency, speed and reliability. (Wired)
  • Since the 1950s, freeways have been shifting people and money from city centers to the suburbs, according to a Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia study. Burying or capping freeways could reduce those effects. (PlanPhilly)
  • Boomer NIMBYs are drowning out other voices and holding back progress on transportation and housing. (Mother Nature News)
  • Cities getting rid of parking spaces is generally a good thing, but one downside is that homeless people who live in their vehicles have fewer places to stay at night. (The Conversation)
  • The Federal Transit Administration has granted $100 million each to light rail projects in Seattle, Phoenix and Los Angeles. (Mass Transit)
  • A San Francisco judge has decided preliminarily that Lyft’s exclusive contract with San Francisco applies to dockless as well as docked bikes. Uber had tried to get in on the dockless game as the number of Lyft’s Bay Wheels bikes dwindled, but after the ruling, Lyft is putting more bikes back on the street. (Chronicle)
  • An Illinois economist says the state’s gas-tax hike will likely encourage people to drive less, and maybe even get rid of their second car (WGIT). President Obama’s former transportation secretary, Ray LaHood, says the federal government should follow suit (Peoria Public Radio).
  • Ridership on Denver transit is up since Uber added route information and a ticket-buying option to its app. (Denver Post, Streetsblog Denver)
  • As other cities reduce their freeway footprints, Louisville continues its aggressive roads and bridges construction. LEO Weekly explains why that’s a bad idea.
  • France is implementing an “eco-tax” on plane tickets that will help fund more environmentally friendly modes of transportation, such as rail. (USA Today)
  • Yas queen! RuPaul knows what’s up. (Twitter)


Back to the Grid: John Norquist on How to Fix National Transpo Policy

How can federal policy encourage walkable street networks instead of highways and sprawl? Image: CNU The news coming out of Washington last week jacked up expectations for national transportation policy to new heights. Cabinet members Ray LaHood and Shaun Donovan announced a partnership to connect transportation and housing policy, branded as the "Sustainable Communities Initiative." […]