Friday’s Headlines From Around the Nation

  • Transit agencies have lost most of their fare revenue, and many have gone fare-free to keep passengers and drivers apart. The worst may be yet to come, though, as other revenue sources like sales and payroll taxes plummet as well. (New York Times)
  • Apparently, Oakland is going to open 74 (that’s seventy four!) miles of “slow streets” for the public. (Oakland Mayor’s Office. Skip to 1:12:40 on the video). It’s 10 percent of that city’s streets (by comparison, NYC did 1.5 miles or .02 percent, of its streets … for 11 days before returning the roadways to cars. And Minneapolis is also closing more streets to traffic to accommodate social distancing. (KSTP)
  • Two bills introduced by an Illinois congressman would put access to services and jobs, rather than vehicular speeds, at the center of U.S. transportation policy. (Transportation for America)
  • Traffic is a virus. That’s the conclusion of physicists and engineers who’ve discovered that congestion spreads like an infectious disease. The new outlook could help transportation planners unclog city streets. (Inverse)
  • Cities are taking advantage of empty streets during the coronavirus pandemic to advance infrastructure projects like L.A.’s Purple Line subway and do much-needed repairs. (City Lab)
  • More than 1,000 New York City transit workers have tested positive for COVID-19, and bus drivers are dying at three times the rate of first responders like police officers, firefighters and EMTs. (The Nation)
  • Critics of a planned high-speed rail line between Houston and Dallas are using coronavirus as an excuse to try to halt the project. (Houston Chronicle)
  • Streetsblog SF has high praise for San Francisco transportation czar Jeffrey Tumlin.
  • Unlike in many cities, e-scooters are still available in Tampa. (Tampa Bay Times)
  • The Pontiac, Michigan city council reversed course and now wants to remove bike lanes from a Complete Street project on busy Woodward Avenue intended to improve pedestrian access to downtown. (Oakland Press)
  • If the UK is serious about convincing people to drive less, it needs to stop building new roads. (The Conversation)
  • The good news is, traffic in Atlanta is way down. The bad news is, the drivers who remain are turning freeways into NASCAR tracks, with some speeders clocked at over 120 miles per hour. As a result, crashes are up compared to what they should be with so few cars on the road. (AJC)
  • Busybody drones that scold people into social distancing in China and France — the robot version of Karen — are now making their way to the U.S. (New York Magazine)
  • City planner Brent Toderian shares 10 ways cities can open up street space for walking and biking during the coronavirus pandemic. (Twitter)