Transportation headlines, Thursday, Nov. 19

Your daily dose of transportation headlines, compiled by the Metro Library, has arrived. Did you know you can follow @MetroLibrary on Twitter?

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.

Bipartisan Support Builds For Six-Month Extension Of Current Transpo Law
LA StreetsBlog

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

C.I.C.L.E. Announces Campaign To Make N.E.L.A. More Bike Friendly
LA StreetsBlog

Dialogue, Education Key In Getting Public To Accept Road Tolls, U.S. Transit Officials Say
Daily Commercial News And Construction Record

Echo Park Community Warns Metro: Hybrid Plan For Route 2 Terminus Untested, Illegal
LA StreetsBlog

Editorial: Fantasy Tops Reality – Schwarzenegger’s Foolish Request To Help High-Speed Rail
Oakland Tribune

Google Bike Directions Could Be Useful Tool For Cities
Mobilizing The Region

June Groundbreaking For Downtown’s New Civic Park
LA Curbed

No Late-Night Subway Service For The Holidays This Year
LAist

Opinion: What The Future May Hold
New York Times

Our View: Don’t Let Commuter Rail Hit the Skids – Pushing For High-Speed Rail Is Fine, But It Shouldn’t Mean Less Money For Amtrak
Merced Sun-Star

Portlander Wins “Dump The Pump” Film Contest
Oregon Live

San Francisco Starts Building Green Streets For Stormwater Management
SF StreetsBlog

“This Needs Attention:” Senators Seek Shot In The Arm On Transportation
DC StreetsBlog

Transport Official Laments “If It Scares, It Airs” Mentality
CBS News

U.S. Department Of Transportation Releases New Action Plan To Address Motorcoach Safety Issues
U.S. Department Of Transportation
Full-text document (56p. PDF)

U.S. Proposes Bus Seat Belts, Driver Cell-Phone Ban
Bloomberg

World-Class Avenues For The East Side: What Great BRT Looks Like
NY StreetsBlog

Categories: Transportation News

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