Thursday’s Headlines: RIP Norman Mineta

  • Former Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta has died (CNN). President Clinton made him the first Asian-American Cabinet member in U.S. history, and he is remembered for helping create the TSA after 9/11 under President George W. Bush. But Mineta was also a strong advocate for mass transit as the mayor of San Jose and as a congressman (San Jose Spotlight).
  • A Biden administration carbon-reduction program could help long-haul truckers go electric. (The Trucker)
  • Maybe California should spend its massive tax surplus on things like transit and housing, rather than rebates to drivers. (Los Angeles Times)
  • Good policy aside, gas prices remain a wedge issue, as vulnerable Democratic New Hampshire Sen. Maggie Hassan is breaking with President Biden on the issue. (The Hill)
  • D.C. Circulator drivers are going on strike. (Washington Post)
  • Washington state transit is about to go fare-free for riders 18 and under. (The Columbian)
  • The Metro Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority is now considering potential bus rapid transit routes, rather than light rail, on the Clifton Corridor to Emory University. (Saporta Report)
  • Austin transit leaders released a proposed route for the Orange light rail line. (KXAN)
  • An urban freeway in Milwaukee, Highway 175, could be razed and replaced with a boulevard. (Milwaukee Magazine)
  • It took drivers killing three pedestrians within an hour in Utah for the Deseret News to wonder if it’s finally time to get serious about road safety.
  • Hillsborough County, Florida, is poised to spend $20 million on sidewalk repair, but that’s not much when 900 neighborhoods are on the list. (Fox 13)
  • Cincinnati has several bike lane projects underway. (Fox 19)
  • North Carolina transit agency GoTriangle has finally provided a reckoning on how it spent $157 million for a failed light rail project. (Durham Herald-Sun)
  • A Swedish study found that the sleep and mood of residents was improved when a city switched from diesel hybrid to quieter fully electric buses. (Green Car Congress)


Bush Transpo Secretary’s Biggest Disappointment: Bush

DC Velocity magazine has just released a lengthy interview with Norman Mineta, the Bush-era transportation secretary and former Democratic member of Congress. Former U.S. DOT chief Mineta (r.), with his biggest disappointment. (Photo: Academy of Achievement) In the interview, Mineta — who now works on infrastructure at the consulting firm Hill & Knowlton — spoke […]

House Celebrates Norman Mineta, Ignores His Ideas

Congratulations are in order for former DOT chief Norman Mineta. The House of Representatives just voted, 384 to 0, to honor his accomplishments. Unfortunately, they still can’t muster the votes to follow his urgent recommendations: that the country ramp up our investments in infrastructure, that we switch from a gas tax to a VMT fee, […]

Drawing Ideas From Reformers, Obama Gets Behind 6-Year Transpo Plan

President Obama told reporters today that he’s committed to a six-year plan to rebuild 150,000 miles of roads, lay and maintain 4,000 miles of railways, restore 150 miles of runways, and create a national infrastructure bank. He made his remarks after meeting with Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, former Secretaries Samuel Skinner and Norman Mineta, L.A. […]

Turning a Blind Eye to the Risks of Auto Culture

In today’s New York Times article about how the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration withheld research data on the risks of cellphone use while driving, one little nugget in particular caught my attention: [Dr. Jeffrey Runge, then the head of the highway safety agency,] said [the chief of staff for Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta] asked […]