Traffic deaths fell slightly last year but remain a “national crisis,” according to Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg (Fox Business). Buttigieg highlighted the disproportionate impact on communities of color in an interview with Al Sharpton (MSNBC). In testimony before Congress, he also emphasized the Biden administration’s proposed funding for road safety (Transport Topics).
Republican senators criticized Julie Su, President Biden’s nominee for labor secretary, because she enforced labor laws for gig economy workers like Uber and Lyft drivers in California. (Reuters)
Lyft’s new CEO, David Risher, is laying off 1,200 employees. (CNBC)
Major European and Latin American cities are known as the best for biking, but some mid-sized U.S. cities like Berkeley, Madison, Fargo and Salt Lake City are pretty good, too. (Forbes)
Austin voters approved billions in funding for the Project Connect transit expansion three years ago, but might have to vote again if Texas legislators get their way. (KXAN)
Two bills in the Arizona legislature are metro Phoenix’s last hope to extend Prop 400, a half-penny sales tax for transportation that would fund more light rail. (Capitol Times)
Connecticut has ended its year-long fare-free transit pilot program. (CT Public)
Baltimore light rail is hiring more workers and returning to 10-minute headways. (CBS News)
Washington, D.C. is backtracking on plans for bike lanes on Connecticut Avenue due to concerns about removing parking (Washington Post). A bike/pedestrian project at Hains Point has also been delated (Axios).
Protected bike lanes are also controversial in Asheville, one of the most progressive cities in the South. (Citizen-Times)
Omaha’s Heartland Bike Share is converting its entire fleet to e-bikes. (KETV)
The Biketown bikeshare system in Portland is expanding by 500 bikes. (Bike Portland)
St. Petersburg has a new e-bike bikeshare. (Fox 13)
This square-wheeled bike essentially works like a pedal-powered tank. (Jalopnik)
Mayor Pete's transportation plan would create a national Vision Zero plan, charge drivers more for their use of the roads, build more public transit, and create "sustainable infrastructure" jobs — but it also has some proposals that might undermine all of it.
Former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg has been tapped to be Secretary of Transportation. Whatever you think, remember that this guy is one of the few politicians who acknowledges the "many ways we subsidize driving." So there's that.
Buttigieg presented an ambitious vision for a more just and sustainable transportation system in the U.S. We’ll be eagerly following the funding, regulation and policy specifics of how this vision can be realized.