Transportation headlines, Thursday, Nov. 5

Does anyone at the Metro library ever sleep? I doubt it. Plus, why sleep when there’s an entire Internet that must be scrubbed to find the latest, greatest transportation headlines for your reading pleasure.

The great transportation writer Tom Vanderbilt has a story at Slate that asks why the press has been paying so much attention lately to jaywalking? As Vanderbilt sees it, jaywalking can be problematic and lead to injury and death. But the far greater issue in his view is that conditions for pedestrians are often lousy at the expense of making conditions for cars better. He writes:

But the facts simply do not support the idea that jaywalking is the greatest danger pedestrians face, and that drivers should be let off the hook. In San Francisco, for example, a report by the city’s Municipal Transportation Agency looking at collisions in 2007 found that cases of drivers violating the pedestrian’s right of way were more common than pedestrians violating that of drivers. In New York City the Post, quoting numbers from the DoT, said 50 jaywalkers were killed annually; this is a high number to be sure, but just one-fourth the total pedestrian death toll.

The L.A. Times has a story today about a group called civLAvia that wants to see more streets shut down on Sundays so that cyclists can use them. I think it’s a fine idea — when I worked at that newspaper (I was put on waivers in March) I wrote a few blog items about all the other cities that close streets on weekends for cyclists, runners and pedestrians. Obviously there are concerns about creating traffic and impeding access to neighborhoods, but this sure feels like something a smart city pol could figure out and occasionally do in some parts of the city. And I bet it would be hugely popular: thousands showed up in 2003 when the Pasadena Freeway was briefly handed over to cyclists on a Sunday morning.

Which metro areas are people leaving and which metro areas are attracting domestic migrants? New Geography has a story that takes on the view that the young and educated are moving to certain hip areas of the country such as New York City. The website, using a lot of charts, makes the argument that, in fact, most domestic migrants are landing in sunbelt cities and other red states and that places such as New York and the greater L.A. area are seeing significant outflows of the young and hip.

The full list of today’s headlines is after the jump.

America’s Most Toxic Cities (Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana Metropolitan Area is 7th worst)
Forbes

Corona Transit Center Groundbreaking Ceremony: You’re Invited (November 20, 2009)
Riverside Transit

From Place To Place: Reinventing Transportation Planning Through Placemaking
Project For Public Spaces

How To Make Route 2’s End Less Stubby And Crowded
Curbed LA

Imagine — L.A. Bicyclists In the Driver’s Seat, One Day A Week: A Group Called cicLAvia Wants To Close Major L.A. Thoroughfares To Cars And Open Them To Bicyclists On Sundays
Los Angeles Times

In Defense Of Jaywalking: Banning The Practice Won’t Make Pedestrians Safer
Slate

LA Airports’ Dream Come True? (LAWA initiative to steer Disneyland visitors to Ontario International Airport)
Daily Breeze

L.A. Light Rail? Or Keep Your Car?: Villaraigosa’s Rush Aside, The Sales-Tax Increase Won’t Pay Off For Decades
L.A. Weekly

Miami Takes “Giant Step” Toward Being Pedestrian-Oriented City: Historic Adoption Makes Miami Largest City To Replace Auto-Oriented Conventional Zoning With New Urbanist Code
Congress For The New Urbanism

Numbers Don’t Support Migration Exodus To “Cool Cities”
New Geography

Opinion: High Speed Rail Needs Feinstein’s Help
San Jose Mercury News

Transportation’s Value-Added Funding Option
New Republic

Value Capture And Tax-Increment Financing Options For Streetcar Construction: Study Finds Current Land Uses Have Overriding Role In Gauging How Much Value Will Be Generated
Reconnecting America
Full-Text Of Report

What Free Burritos And Traffic Congestion Have In Common
Extraordinary Observations