Friday’s Headlines Are Falling Apart

  • As of this writing, the entire infrastructure package — transit, Amtrak, Complete Streets, highways, warts and all — is in question. Speaker Nancy Pelosi caved to progressives and postponed a House vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill (Politico), leaving the whole two-bill spending package in disarray, with conservative Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin demanding that Democrats cut their reconciliation bill by an additional $2 trillion (Associated Press) and progressives ridiculing his demands (ABC News). But don’t blame this entirely on Democrats: They didn’t have a lot of help (CNN).
  • The pandemic has laid bare the role transit plays in equity and sustainability. (Government Technology)
  • A startup called Via is taking the ride-hailing model and applying it to microtransit. Fares are low, but it’s backed by Shell, and it’s also in line to potentially win federal transit funding. (Forbes)
  • Next City makes the case that buses should be free, because it’s a public good, and it benefits us all whether we ride it or not.
  • E-bikes are currently more popular in Europe, but they’re about to start flooding the U.S. market. (Axios)
  • Private company Fortress is finalizing plans to finance an $8 billion high-speed rail line between Southern California and Las Vegas. (Bloomberg)
  • Officials in the Milwaukee suburbs are asking the county to provide more transit service to connect jobs and workers, but race remains a hurdle. (WUWM)
  • Chicago announced plans to install or upgrade 100 miles of bike lanes by the end of next year. (Cities Today,
  • Austin is halfway toward its goal of building 400 miles of bike lanes by 2025. (Monitor)
  • San Antonio is installing 28 new mid-block crosswalks. (KSAT)
  • Hampton Roads Transit is seeking public input on expanded light rail and bus rapid transit in Norfolk. (Virginian-Pilot)
  • Syracuse has a new bike-share program that also includes e-scooters. (Post-Standard)
  • Arizona State, Tempe and 3M are partnering to create cooler bus shelters. (The State Press)

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Reps. Chuy Garcia, Ayanna Pressley and Henry "Hank" Johnson were the lead signatories of the letter. Images, from left: Rev Dills, CC, Elizabeth Warren, CC and John Ramspott, CC

Progressives Demand $30B for Transit

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Mass transit must be at the center of America's strategy to end climate change — and the next spending package needs to devote at least half our transportation dollars to getting people out of cars and onto public transportation, a coalition of lawmakers says. 
Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y. bikes in his city, but his budget reconciliation measure may not include anything for active modes. Image: Planet Gordon, CC

Reconciliation Bill Will Go Big on EVs

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The massive reconciliation bill under consideration in Congress would fall short of achieving our greenhouse gas reduction target — and the climate wins it does achieve would come disproportionately from consumer incentives for electric vehicles, rather than by shifting drivers out of cars.