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Weekly Transportation News

05/14/2010

Transit:
1. Human Transit Blog: Can Local Buses “Stimulate” Development?

Proximity to streetcar and bus lines are factors for many people when they choose where to live, but can a bus route actually stimulate development?

2. MPR: Central Corridor Construction in Minneapolis Begins in September

Central Corridor project officials announced that the construction of the Minneapolis portion of the Central Corridor will begin in September

3. Star Tribune: Central Light-Rail Schedule Outlined

Project officials on Wednesday outlined the construction schedule for the Minneapolis portion of the line, known as the “Civil West Package”

4. Yglesias Blog: Copenhagen Spicing Up Public Transit

Copenhagen’s buses may soon have a designated seating area for people who would like to flirt with others on the bus –is this a new global trend in the making?

5. AFP: US Transport Chief Test-Rides Japan’s Bullet Train

US DOT Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood was in Japan to test-ride a high-speed train. Japan is up against China, France, Germany and other bidders as it seeks to sell its Shinkansen and magnetic train systems for the US’s high speed rail project that is backed by 13 billion dollars in public funding

6. The Washington Post: China is Pulling Ahead in Worldwide Race for High-Speed Rail Transportation

China now leads the world in both automaking and high-speed rail

7. Finance & Commerce: Some Grumbling about Freeway Transfer Stations

Summarizes the changes taking place on 35W to prepare for BRT. Highlights the South Mpls  routes that will be affected by the changes and gives info for upcoming public comment meetings

8. Planetizen: Electric Buses Wear Out

Almost one-fifth of the transit rides in Kings County, Washington are on electric trolley buses. However, the county hasn’t bought a new trolley since 1979 –will they be replaced when they wear out?

9. Planetizen: Making Mecca a “Mecca” for Public Transit

Mecca’s population doubles during the annual hajj pilgrimage –moving so many people will require a world-class public transit system

10. Star Tribune: Transit Link May Leave Some Riders Behind

Dakota County officials are keeping an eye on the Transit Link launch, fearing that the changes to dial-a-ride service may leave seniors stranded


Bike/Walk:
1. KIRO Radio: Seattle Mayor Announces Walk, Bike, Ride Initiative

Seattle is launching a master plan for the city that seeks to prioritize walking, biking and transit within their existing resources

2. Everyday Fort Collins: Empowering Women to Use Bicycles as Transportation

Outlines common concerns for women when using bicycles as transportation and profiles a new program to empower women to use bicycles

3. Pioneer Press: Bicyclists are Off to the Races, as Moms Sit

Editorial comments about Jefferson Ave planners not considering the impacts the pedestrian refuge and other changes would have on stay-at-home mothers

4. Planetizen: Gainesville Tracks Drivers Yielding to Pedestrians

Police in Gainesville, Florida are trying to encourage drivers to be more cautious of pedestrians with a new sign and driver tracking program that tracks how many drivers are yielding to pedestrians

5. Washington Post: Terms, Mind-sets Must be Changed to Encourage More Walking in  Cities

Excellent article about walking as a major component of 21st-century transportation. Roger K. Lewis, a practicing architect, describes several ways to design streets/cities to be more pedestrian friendly

6. Planetizen: Mix of Successes and Failures for Pedestrian Malls

New York’s Broadway goes pedestrian, while Sacramento’s K Street goes back to having car traffic.

7. WLUC TV 6: Michigan Holding “Training Wheels” Bicycle Courses

Michigan’s DOT is sponsoring courses that are aimed at communities that want to provide bicycle facilities for their residents 

8. Planetizen: Sidewalk Busted? Fix it Yourself

Los Angeles is considering a plan to stop paying for repairs to broken sidewalks and driveways, shifting the economic burden to property owners

9. South Dakota Public Broadcasting: Dakota Midday

Features Paul Mitchell Joachim and Steve Clark, two speakers from the Plain Green Conference.  Steve, from BWTC, is involved in rebuilding Minnesota’s transportation system for walkers and bikers

10. Argus Leader: Class Pushes Bicycle Safety

The South Dakota Bicycle Coalition is working to teach cyclists how to be safe on the road by offering an intensive, two-day League of American Bicyclist training course taught by Michael Christensen and BWTC’s Steve Clark

11. Chicago Tribune: Bike to Work Week

Article all about Chicago’s Active Transportation Alliance Bike Walk Week June 12-18

12. Streetsblog: Cincinnati Aims to Double Number of Cyclists by 2015

Details the efforts Cincinnati is making to become a more bicycle friendly city

13. New York Times: Outcomes Differ After Videos of Police and Cyclists

Two incidents where cyclists were pushed from their bicycles during Critical Mass rides in NYC ended with completely different outcomes for the officers involved


Roads/Bridges:

1. StreetsBlog: The Road to the Future is Not a Drive-Thru

In the Milwaukee suburb of Franklin, Wisconsin, they are losing young, affluent and educated residents to cities with good transit and lively downtowns

2. Star Tribune: Fewer Bumpy Rides Ahead in Washington County

Stretches of Washington County’s highways will undergo repair this year. The county intends to “reclaim” pavement by grinding up portions of six highways and using the material as a base for new surfacing.

3. Planetizen: The Curse of the Cul de Sac

A new study found that residents in areas with interconnected streets travel 26% fewer miles by automobile than those in areas with lots of cul-de-sacs

4. Planetizen: How to Fix the Highway System

Two major reports released recently detail very different approaches to fixing the highway system in the U.S.  Experts weigh in on who has the right approach, U.S. PIRG or the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials

5. Planetizen: Turning Freeways Into Parkways

Across the country, grey-to-green transformations are in the works, capping freeways to reconnect neighborhoods with urban parks


Other:
1. StreetsBlog: Senate Climate Bill Would Send $6B-Plus to Cleaner Transportation

The Kerry-Lieberman American Power Act could direct more than $6 billion of the revenue generated by selling carbon emissions permits to Transportation

2. Top Tenz: Top 10 Odd Methods for Personal Transportation

Check out videos of velomobiles, aquaskippers, and more

3. Session Daily: House Repasses Transportation Bill

The Minnesota House unanimously repassed a transportation bill after a conference committee removed proposals for special license plates

4. MPR: Advocates Say Minn. Slow in Modernizing Crosswalks for the Disabled

The Americans with Disabilities Act requires transportation officials to make conditions safer at crosswalks, but this story interviews several individuals and advocates that say compliance in Minnesota has been too slow

5. Star Tribune: Minn Cities, Counties Push for Public Works Projects

City and county officials urged Gov. Pawlenty and the legislature to approve $150 million in additional public works spending to support civic centers, mass transit, conservation programs, and other projects

6. Planetizen: Smart Growth, 10 Years Later

Wisconsin looks back at ten years with a smart growth law in effect, with most critics calling it a success with some room for improvement

7. Planetizen: Cheers and Jeers for Public Spaces in Chicago

Blair Kamin applauds a new plaza at the Trump International Hotel + Tower and calls an aging public space nearby ‘an eyesore’

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