Thursday’s Headlines Hear That Train A’ Comin’

  • Transit systems are in danger of falling into a death spiral and need government support as part of a green, sustainable economic recovery. (Policy Options)
  • Think cities don’t privilege drivers over transit riders? A monthly transit pass in the 30 largest U.S. cities costs an average of $77, while a monthly parking pass costs $2.25. And that doesn’t even take into account cities where on-street parking is free. (City Observatory)
  • The West Coast wildfires are a reminder of the need to take cars off the road to protect our air quality. (National Resources Defense Council)
  • Desperate for revenue to repair roads while motorists are staying off the road, some states are raising the gas tax. (USA Today)
  • Contractors have stopped work on the Purple Line and are preparing to walk off the job as they negotiate a settlement with Maryland on cost overruns. (Washington Post)
  • A new report from a transit advocacy group calls for the Pittsburgh Port Authority to let low-income people ride fare-free and tweak routes to meet pandemic-related changes in demand. The program would work by letting Supplement Nutrition Assistance Program-eligible riders show their EBT cards to board. (Post-Gazette)
  • Portland transportation officials are studying four different options for congestion pricing. While one of the goals is to change driver behavior, about two-thirds of commuters don’t have any choice but to drive. E-bikes could give them an alternative. (Bike Portland)
  • Austin TV station KVUE interviews Mayor Steve Adler and Cap Metro board chairman Wade Cooper about the upcoming $7 billion Project Connect transit referendum.
  • A new method of building tunnels will shave almost a year off the construction time for Brightline’s West Palm Beach-to-Orlando extension. (Construction Dive)
  • Ridership on the recently reopened — and free — Cincinnati streetcar is starting to tick up. (WKRC)
  • Workers discovered the century-old remains of a Native American woman during construction on the Orange County streetcar. (NBC Los Angeles)
  • Want to start commuting by bike? Here’s how to do it with confidence. (Bicycling Magazine)


The Federal Government Wants to Bribe You to Drive to Work

Did you need another reason to be disappointed in the federal government? Well today’s your lucky day! Remember when we talked about how subsidies should only be used to encourage behaviors beneficial to society. Well, Washington didn’t get the message. Congress is about to let a tax break for transit riders expire while allowing an […]

A Bigger Transit Benefit Is No Match for America’s Parking Tax Perk

Late last year Congress finally moved to boost the maximum commuter tax benefit for transit riders to the same level that car commuters receive. That means transit riders can buy up to $255 in fares each month with pre-tax income, just like drivers can pay for $255 in parking expenses with pre-tax income. Great news, right? Well, it’s definitely a step in […]

Will D.C. Metro Fall Into a Transit Death Spiral?

The situation unfolding for transit riders in Washington, DC, is scary. Few American cities rely on transit more than DC, but the system seems to be caught in a spiral of deteriorating service and declining ridership. With fewer people paying fares, WMATA has less revenue to pay for service, and the cycle continues. WMATA is now planning for […]