Wednesday’s Headlines from All Over

  • A California judge ordered Uber and Lyft to classify their drivers as employees. The preliminary injunction doesn’t take effect for 10 days, though, giving the companies a chance to appeal. (The Verge)
  • Lyft announced it’s offering 1.5 million free rides in Black communities that are underserved by transit (BET). Why not just support transit, though? When the free rides run out, people will be stuck with the same lousy transit service they had before.
  • A New York Times interactive feature explains how subway ventilation systems work. Filters and continuous air flow help keep riders from being exposed to coronavirus.
  • Also from the Times: Traffic virtually disappeared from NYC five months ago, but now that the lockdown is ending, cyclists, pedestrians, restaurant owners who’ve set up outdoor tables and anxious parents eyeing outdoor classroom space are engaging in righteous battle with selfish drivers over control of the streets.
  • Energy policy will be a key issue in the upcoming election, with Democrat Joe Biden in general moving left toward former rival Bernie Sanders and the Green New Deal, but vacillating on some issues, like fracking. (Forbes)
  • You don’t need to have a ton of gear or even be in shape to start biking. (NPR)
  • Maryland says the state will take over Purple Line construction if it can’t reach an agreement with contractors on the public-private light rail line’s cost overruns. (Washington Post)
  • Despite the dropoff in ridership and revenue during the pandemic, Virginia remains committed to a commuter rail and pedestrian bridge over the Potomac. (Inside NoVa)
  • Amtrak is restoring a daily round-trip between Charlotte and Raleigh after suspending service when coronavirus broke out, according to the North Carolina DOT.
  • Houston is seeking public comment on a proposed ordinance that would fine drivers for parking in bike lanes. (Houston Public Media)
  • Cape Cod towns are closing beach parking lots to keep crowds away during the pandemic. (Boston Herald)
  • Bogota is rebuilding itself around the bike, adding 280 kilometers to its 550-km bike network over the next four years. (City Lab)

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Can Ride-Hailing Apps Become More Like Buses and Less Like Taxis?

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A big part of reducing car traffic involves using cars more efficiently. Ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft are supposedly assisting in this transition by making car ownership less necessary. But even though both companies operate carpool-type services, most of their business still comes from single passenger trips. Other ride-hailing companies are all about shared trips. Network blog Cap’n Transit has […]