Monday’s Headlines

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  • A California bill to curb sprawl and encourage denser housing around transit has failed for the third year in a row. Gov. Gavin Newsom and other supporters vow to press on. (L.A. Times)
  • Brown goes green: UPS is buying 10,000 electric delivery trucks from British tech company Arrival, with an option to buy 10,000 more. They’ll be tested in London and Paris this year before being rolled out across Europe and North America. (Engadget)
  • Most of the people who went to Sunday’s Super Bowl in Miami probably drove. Why not encourage sports fans to take a bus or train, parking guru Donald Shoup writes, by giving ticketholders free transit passes? It’s called transit validation, and it can reduce congestion, cut down on drunk driving and reduce the need for acres of parking around stadiums. (City Lab)
  • Houston had the most car crashes of any U.S. city in 2018, according to nonprofit Go Safe Labs, followed by Charlotte, Los Angeles, Austin, Dallas, Raleigh, Oklahoma City, Baton Rouge, Nashville and Phoenix.
  • From Barcelona’s superblocks to a planned car-free development in Tempe, Fast Company lists 11 cities that are banning — or at least limiting — cars.
  • Traffic engineers should base speed limits on what is safe, not how fast drivers want to go. (State Smart Transportation Initiative)
  • Another rich guy says that driverless cars will be better for cities. Gensler Co-Managing Principal Joseph Brancato seems like he has good intentions, but as Conor Oberst once sang, “If someone says they knows for certain, they’re selling something certainly.” (Inman)
  • Lime is developing technology that can tell when e-scooter users are riding on the sidewalk, and will both alert the rider and report it to the city. But don’t expect an e-ticket — yet. (Electrek)
  • About three-quarters of cyclists said they felt safer in an Atlanta pop-up bike lane during a weeklong test. Drivers, of course, hated it. (AJC)
  • Suburban Memphis leaders are pushing back on plans to tax cars to fund transit. (Daily Memphian)
  • The Nashville region’s 93 mayors plan to release a new transit plan in early 2021. Voters rejected a previous version two years ago. (Nashville Post)
  • Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell is skeptical that the city’s troubled light rail line will open in October as promised. (Star-Advertiser)
  • Some people paid less for their house than a San Francisco man wants for a parking space. (WTOC)
  • And Streetsblog NYC rounded up the car culture ads during the Big Game.

Friday’s Headlines

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  • American cities should follow European cities’ lead by making streets multimodal, implementing congestion pricing, establishing car-free zones, eliminating on-street parking and boosting transit. (Curbed)
  • Yonah Freemark highlights 20 North American transit projects set to open in 2020, including rail lines in Denver, Miami, Honolulu, Washington, D.C. and San Francisco, and bus rapid transit in Houston, Omaha and Albany. (Transport Politic)
  • Transportation for America likes House Democrats’ infrastructure bill because it focuses on repairs over new construction and puts funding into passenger rail. Streetsblog also weighed in with mostly praise for the plan.
  • The Federal Transit Administration is offering $130 million in grants for low- and no-emissions buses. (Transportation Today)
  • Lyft is laying off 90 employees in an effort to become profitable. (Tech Crunch)
  • Carmel, Indiana has found the secret to keeping drivers from killing people: roundabouts. The city has installed 120 since 1996, and the traffic death rate has fallen to one-sixth the national average. (Smart Cities Dive)
  • A San Antonio plan to shift sales tax revenue from aquifer protection to transit won’t require a water rate hike, Mayor Ron Nirenberg says (KSAT). According to one poll, 65% of voters support the measure (Rivard Report).
  • Florida’s Brightline has killed 40 people in its first two years of operation, making it the nation’s deadliest railroad. (NPR)
  • Wake County, North Carolina is spending $114 million to improve transit, including a bus rapid transit line in Raleigh and new transfer stations. (News & Observer)
  • St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson wants a bi-state agency to reconsider its decision not to restart the Loop Trolley because the city could owe the feds $25 million if it remains shut down. (Post-Dispatch)
  • Nearby residents are opposed to a plan to build toll lanes on I-285 in Atlanta, saying it will create more noise and traffic, and require the Georgia DOT to acquire private property. The state should be investing in transit instead, some told the AJC.
  • A new study out of Australia confirms what you probably already knew: Cities with strong transit and short blocks with low speeds are the safest. (Futurity)

Thursday’s Headlines

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  • House Democrats acknowledged they can’t continue to view infrastructure as simply building highways while introducing a $760-billion bill that puts an emphasis on climate change. But two-thirds of the $489 billion devoted to transportation would still go toward roads. (Politico)
  • Climate change will affect the way we work and commute. Increasing heat and natural disasters will cause bridges to collapse and railroads to warp, and force us to stay inside or work at night. Air travel will be curtailed, and tech workers will flee the coasts. (Fast Company)
  • Cars cost Massachusetts governments and residents $64 billion a year in road upkeep, snow removal, emergency services, time lost to traffic, pollution and medical expenses — more than the entire state budget, according to a Harvard study. (Route Fifty)
  • California drivers are killing more cyclists than anytime in the past 25 years, with Los Angeles County leading the way. Experts attribute the spike to more people on the road, distracted driving and larger vehicles. (Healthline)
  • Boulder’s B-Cycle bike-share could shut down by March unless the city and the University of Colorado step in with more funding. Meanwhile, city staff are recommending a ban on e-scooters, which could leave residents with no rental options for short trips. (Daily Camera)
  • Connecticut has diverted more than $1 billion in gas tax receipts away from transportation over the past 15 years. (Mirror)
  • Providence’s “Great Streets Initiative” will put two-way bike lanes, off-road paths and traffic calming measures on 75 miles of city streets. (Journal)
  • When it comes to transit, Austin Mayor Steve Alder thinks the city should go big or go home — and he’s betting that voters agree. (Monitor)
  • Nashville’s laissez faire approach to parking enforcement is costing the city money and businesses customers. Parking employees get off at 4 p.m., and even if a driver gambles and loses, the ticket is only $11 — less than what many garages charge. (WSMV)
  • The Downtowner — Tampa’s popular, free ride-hailing service — could be a goner come March unless the Hillsborough County transit agency or someone else steps up to fund it. Critics say it competes with buses and the streetcar. (Tampa Bay Times)
  • Kansas City is considering banning distracted driving (it’s hasn’t already?). (Northeast News)
  • A St. Louis Public Radio podcast discusses pedestrian safety and the poor state of the city’s sidewalks.
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