Thursday’s Headlines Across Our Great Big Land

  • From electrifying the federal fleet to fixing broken sidewalks to building high-speed rail in California, Curbed lists nine things Pete Buttigieg should do as transportation secretary.
  • Buttigieg’s confirmation as transportation secretary brings new attention to the idea of replacing the gas tax with a VMT or user fee. (Bloomberg)
  • The elderly are at the front of the line for COVID-19 shots, but many don’t have a way to get to a vaccination site. The same problem affects rural residents and people of color in low-income neighborhoods. (Pew Trust)
  • An early investor in Uber says the company wasted billions on self-driving cars. (Business Insider)
  • Citing Houston’s much-ballyhooed “protected intersection” — really just some bollards across two major arterials — City Observatory’s Joe Cortwright argues at Strong Towns that most pedestrian infrastructure is really meant to relieve drivers of the burden of looking out for people on foot.
  • The Minnesota DOT is about to reconstruct I-94 through Minneapolis. Will it make the mistake of widening the freeway, which already divides a historic Black neighborhood? (MinnPost)
  • Induced demand from widening I-5 through Portland’s Rose Quarter will result in an additional 17 million to 35 million vehicle-miles traveled per year. (City Commentary)
  • Washington, D.C. used eminent domain to acquire Dave Thomas Circle and make improvements to the notoriously dangerous intersection. (Fox 5)
  • The Federal Transit Administration approved an environmental permit for East San Fernando Valley light rail in Los Angeles. (Mass Transit Mag)
  • When considering a new development in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood, the Cincinnati city council faces a choice between affordable housing or streetcar subsidies. (WVXU)
  • Boston’s transit agency is studying where to extend the Silver Line. (Globe)
  • Carbon-trading hasn’t reduced emissions in New Zealand, so now it’s turning to powering a fleet of electric cars with renewable energy. (The Conversation)
  • While U.S. transit agencies cut service and fight for scraps from Congress to survive, Montreal recognizes that transit is an essential part of its economic recovery and is embarking on an ambitious expansion. (City Monitor)
  • The Philadelphia Inquirer has tips for dressing warmly and maintaining your bike in cold weather.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG