Thursday’s Headlines: Pre-Fourth of July Edition

We’ll take Friday off because the boss says we can, so here are the headlines that will have to hold you until Monday!

  • The House approved Democrats’ $1.5-trillion infrastructure bill (New York Daily News), and it’s better than any such bill that’s passed before (Streetsblog). It’s a new kind of legislative framework that ties together transportation, land use, housing, development and climate that are inextricably linked but usually addressed separately (Smart Growth).
  • Uber is starting to cooperate with transit agencies by allowing users to buy bus and train tickets or hail publicly run shuttles through its app. (New York Times)
  • Data collected by insurance company Allstate provides further proof that drivers are more reckless on streets emptied out by the pandemic. Drivers are 20 percent more likely to go over 100 miles per hour, and crash speeds are up 50 percent. (Fast Company)
  • Fare-free subways would help the environment and low-income riders, and improve systems’ efficiency at a relatively low cost. (Energy Institute at Haas)
  • Now-empty malls like Alderwood in Seattle that once contributed to suburban sprawl can be converted into walkable mixed-use developments. (City Lab)
  • Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler and other officials announced their opposition to the Rose Quarter I-5 widening project after community group the Albina Vision Trust withdrew its support. (Willamette Week)
  • Georgia State Patrol has written 50,000 distracted driving tickets since the state legislature outlawed holding a cellphone while driving in 2018. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
  • Philadelphia transit agency SEPTA (Inquirer) and the Maryland Transit Administration (Baltimore Sun) are returning to their pre-pandemic schedules.
  • Toledo’s bike-share is up and running again (Blade), Topeka’s is ending (KSNT), Columbus is adding e-bikes and a discount program for low-income users (Underground), and scooters are returning to Atlanta (AJC).
  • Oh, good: A company that owns a Texas toll road is giving drivers a chance to win cash rewards to drive up traffic. (Austin American-Statesman)
  • After emerging from the coronavirus lockdown, Bostonians have a new appreciation for the city’s pedestrian bridges. (Globe)
  • Paris Metro has a reputation for being dirty, but it’s now leading the way in safety by requiring masks, doling out hand sanitizer and spacing out passengers. (City Metric)

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Transit workers union brags about its political donation winning a White House nomination, making senators very angry (Roll Call) Back home in Minnesota, Oberstar keeps jabbing at the White House’s transpo delay plan (Finance and Commerce) Obama announces $2.4 billion in grants to car battery manufacturers (NYT) Senate vote on "cash for clunkers" re-up could […]

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Oberstar bashes the Obama administration anew: "They have not given transportation any thought. I have." (NPR) DeFazio also keeps the heat on, calling LaHood a "good guy [who] knows nothing about transportation" (Oregonian) Freight and trucking lobbies decline to endorse Oberstar in his battle with the White House; truckers are concerned about his support for […]

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Another analysis reveals that U.S. DOT road money isn’t being routed first to economically distressed areas (AP) Why not institute a National Design Policy for housing? (NYT) Between D.C. suburbs and Baltimore, Maryland governor is pulling double shifts in the transit aid hunt (WaPo) Brookings’ Robert Puentes and Adie Tomer explore how current road funding […]

Today’s Headlines

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No. 2 House Democrat talks up high-speed rail in upstate New York (Utica O-D) Minnesota is still locked in negligence litigation with two companies after its deadly 2007 bridge collapse — but the state DOT is giving them millions of dollars in work anyway (AP) "Cash for clunkers" is a stellar economic stimulus … for […]

Today’s Headlines

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Cash-poor cities forced to sell off naming rights to transit lines and stations (Ad Age) Will House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Jim Oberstar’s (D-MN) long journey come to naught this year? A profile to tell the story (CQ) Road-lobby chief calls for Washington to hike the federal gas tax (Baltimore Sun) Sen. Barbara Boxer […]

Today’s Headlines

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Federal highway safety regulators knew that cell phone use while driving — even on a hands-free device — was a massive safety risk, but they hid it from Congress (NYT) LaHood’s stimulus tour stops in Sarasota, Florida (Herald-Trib) Don’t fret, New Yorkers: The $8 billion Hudson transit tunnel is on track for federal money whether […]