Thursday’s Headlines on the Road to Safer Streets

  • The U.S. must start prioritizing safety in designing and building roads and shift away from the emphasize on moving goods and people efficiently, says the chair of the National Transportation Safety Board, advocating a system that minimizes crashes instead of relying on drivers not to make mistakes. (Smart Cities Dive)
  • The American Public Transit Association supports a House version of the infrastructure bill adding $10 billion in funding to transit and $10 billion for high-speed rail (Transportation Today). Progressive Democrats want the transit funding, plus $20 billion for shared modes, all taken from money for electric vehicles, which they argue aren’t up to the task of meeting climate goals (Streetsblog USA).
  • Since 2000, more than 1,500 U.S. communities have adopted Complete Streets. (Smart Growth America)
  • The pandemic has made it even more important for transit agencies to listen to passengers. (The City Fix)
  • The University of New Mexico is researching sidewalk materials that are more sustainable and retain less heat than concrete.
  • A passenger who was in the car when a Kalamazoo Uber driver was about to start a mass shooting spree in 2016 has filed a lawsuit alleging that the company could have stopped the killer. The passenger says he tried to tell Uber about Jason Dalton’s reckless driving but it never deactivated him from the app per policy. (WOOD)
  • With new pro-transit members, the Phoenix City Council could revive plans for a light rail line it scuttled in 2018 in the face of opposition from businesses. (New Times)
  • A hundred years ago, Spokane merchants were angry about a utility company’s plans to abandon streetcar lines. (Spokesman-Review)
  • Portland is lowering the speed limit on North Halsey, but that doesn’t change the fact that the street it built like a drag strip (Willamette Week). Meanwhile, Portland transit agency TriMet’s Red Line will be extended (Hillsboro News Times)
  • Barcelona is giving free transit passes to residents who give up their cars. (Eltis)


Use the Stimulus Bill to Complete Our Nation’s Streets

One of the most encouraging moments in last week’s PBS NOW documentary about Charlotte, NC came when Mayor Pat McCrory pointed out the importance of "complete streets" to the success of the city’s new light rail system. "Transit alone doesn’t transform neighborhoods," said McCrory. "The key is how you connect those neighborhoods to the train […]