Monday’s Headlines From Around the Nation

  • Forget Priuses. The New York Times thinks the introduction of electric SUVs and pickups like Tesla’s Cybertruck means that EVs will finally catch on with the public. While these three-ton behemoths might be somewhat better for the environment, the Times fails to mention that they’re no less deadly to pedestrians.
  • So nice we listed it twice: Outside Magazine is embarking on a project to document every cyclist death in 2020.
  • Democrats are preparing to unveil a coronavirus relief package they compared to FDR’s New Deal during the Great Depression, which included massive spending for infrastructure projects. (The Hill)
  • Some of the folks behind the failed Sidewalks Lab project in Toronto (Tech Crunch) now have a plan to improve/disrupt/whatever U.S. infrastructure (Fortune). But, as StreetsblogNYC points out, turning public infrastructure over to tech billionaires is probably not such a great idea.
  • Uber has long been criticized for siphoning off passengers from public transportation, but now transit agencies are turning to the service — itself struggling during the pandemic — to make up for service cuts from lost revenue as people shelter in place. (Reuters)
  • Starting today, Amtrak is requiring all passengers to wear masks to diminish the risk of spreading coronavirus. (NPR)
  • This is happening all over, including in Minnesota: Traffic is down, but fatalities are up because more people are speeding on empty streets. (MinnPost)
  • Pittsburgh and Philadelphia advocates are pressuring the state to keep up $450-million annual payments to transit systems from turnpike revenue despite the downturn in tolls. (Post-Gazette)
  • COVID-19 is an existential crisis for California transit. Agencies have seen ridership drop up to 95 percent, and federal relief funding is just a Band-Aid. (CalMatters)
  • New kiosks on a Boston commuter rail line will allow riders to pay electronically, and they’ll also get free transfers. (Boston Globe)
  • Bike Portland has some ideas about messaging and equity for Rip City’s slow streets program.
  • South Charleston is the latest city to let restaurants turn sidewalks into outdoor cafes (WCHS). While that might sound like a good idea, there are mobility issues involved, according to StreetsblogUSA‘s Kea Wilson.
  • An Alabama lawmaker wants to divert gas tax revenue away from road projects and temporarily dedicate it to helping small businesses stay afloat instead. (WDHN)
  • London is expecting a tenfold increase in biking post-lockdown, and is busy widening sidewalks and creating new bike lanes in anticipation (The Guardian). Same in Manchester (Forbes).

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Today’s Headlines

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CNN Highlights the Sorry State of America’s Infrastructure Georgia Threatens to Shut Down Atlanta Streetcar (AJC) Seattle Bumps Up Timeline for Light Rail Projects (Seattle Times) Uber Preps to Meet Demand During DC Metro Work (WaPo, The Hill) Google Plans Self-Driving Car Center Near Detroit (Detroit Free Press) Driverless Car Tech to Get Boost from US-Israel Collaboration […]

Carlyle Group’s New Infrastructure Public-Private Partnership: Donuts

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As the federal deficit squeezes the Obama administration’s options for financing ambitious new infrastructure projects, public-private partnerships (PPPs) are gaining currency as a possible solution. And in an illustration of PPPs’ potential, the $86 billion private-equity firm Carlyle Group yesterday struck a deal with the state of Connecticut to run … 23 highway rest stops. […]