Here are my favorite stories from today’s round-up:
Google announced that they will soon be adding “Bike There” directions to Google Maps. How exactly this would work is currently unclear – the article mentions directions might encourage use of bicycle specific infrastructure. I know Google offers parking lot information on their maps, I think it would be amazing if “Bike There” includes bicycle parking info so that bicyclists could know exactly where to lock up when the arrive at their destination. It would also be nice to see transit directions updated to include a “with bicycle” option that would go a long way to solving the “last mile problem”. All we can do is speculate and dream, but the announcement means bicycle directions will be showing up on our Google Maps soon.
The New York Times has an Op-Ed piece that asks readers to imagine what the future will be like for the toddlers of today if the U.S. fails to invest in updating its infrastructure. The writer notes that even today our infrastructure is crumbling and dangerous, calling the U.S. the “infrastructure equivalent of a jalopy.” His solution? A reinvestment in cities and connecting them with high speed rail and a smart energy grid. It all sounds great, but is the U.S. political system capable of such smart investments?
The Oakland Tribune calls a decision by governor Schwarzenegger to forgo an application for $1.1 billion in stimulus money for traditional rail projects and instead ask for $4.7 billion for the California high speed rail project a “grave and fooldhardy mistake.” The $1.1 billion was to be spent improving the existing rail infrastructure in California, including investments that would reduce travel time on Amtrak from Los Angeles to San Diego by an hour.
California Faces A Projected Deficit Of $21 Billion: The Legislative Budget Analyst’s Projection…Threatens To Send Sacramento Back Into Gridlock And Force More Broad Cuts To State Programs
Los Angeles Times
Dialogue, Education Key In Getting Public To Accept Road Tolls, U.S. Transit Officials Say
Daily Commercial News And Construction Record
Google Bike Directions Could Be Useful Tool For Cities
Mobilizing The Region
Opinion: What The Future May Hold
New York Times
Portlander Wins “Dump The Pump” Film Contest
U.S. Department Of Transportation Releases New Action Plan To Address Motorcoach Safety Issues
U.S. Department Of Transportation
Full-text document (56p. PDF)