Tuesday’s Headlines

  • The New York Times wonders why more people aren’t riding the bus. Maybe it’s coronavirus? According to City Commentary, it’s no secret: cheap gas.
  • Bay Area Rapid Transit is losing $5 million a week in farebox revenue, thanks to coronavirus, and is asking the Federal Transit Administration for help (San Francisco Chronicle). Also in the Bay Area, the Valley Transit Authority is suspending school service and reducing rail capacity (SF Gate). The FTA has already allowed the New York subway to use federal capital grants meant for new trains and maintenance to cover operating expenses (Daily News).
  • On the bright side, traffic is plunging in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle since the pandemic began (USA Today). But not in Atlanta, where tolls are rising as congestion worsens and drivers seek to avoid delays (Saporta Report).
  • In addition, as Streesblog previously reported, New York is seeing a cycling boom — up 67 percent over last year (Salon, The Grist).
  • Streetsblog is all over the coronavirus, too: Driving more slowly will reduce crashes and help hospitals handle the COVID-19 crush. San Francisco is ordering people to shelter in place. If you have to go somewhere, biking is a safe mode of travel during the pandemic. If you have to ride transit, here’s how you do it safely. To the extent that government-as-usual goes on, cities can involve the public without public meetings.
  • Despite quarantines and recommendations of social distancing, many Uber and Lyft drivers are still working (Mic). The companies recently announced that they’ll compensate any drivers who’ve been diagnosed with COVID-19 for 14 days (Axios).
  • The Pittsburgh Port Authority is disinfecting buses and light-rail cars every 24 hours. (Tribune-Review)
  • If you’re telecommuting during the coronavirus outbreak, here are a few tips: Set up a workspace, set a schedule, get exercise and talk more on the phone. (5280)