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