Transportation headlines, Tuesday, April 13

Here’s a look at some of the transportation headlines gathered by the Metro Library. The full list of headlines is posted on the library’s blog. Don’t forget you can also follow the Metro Library on Facebook and Twitter.

Can we cycle the “last mile”?
(Human Transit)

Bikes on transit is a hot issue. Many see it as a way to solve the “last mile” problem – that gap between a transit stop and your final destination. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as just saying “bring your bike along for the ride”. Jarrett Walker of Human Transit sees three issues that must be addressed: getting to the station, taking bikes aboard crowded transit vehicles and bicycle parking at stations. Getting the bicycle on the transit vehicle has always been an issue for me – on one hand it’s clearly the best way to create a seamless bicycle/transit trip but on the other hand squeezing a bike into a crowded train doesn’t seem fair to the other riders.

Campaign to end distracted driving gains mainstream currency with Pulitzer (Fast Lane)

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s blog offers congrats and thanks to New York Times journalist Matt Richter and staff members for winning a Pulitzer Prize for last year’s series on distracted driving. The series of articles helped bring national attention to the issue and since then many States have made texting behind the wheel illegal.

The end of the automobile era? (Planetizen)

Is the American love affair with the car over? Planetizen thinks there’s some telling signs that signal a shift in cultural attitudes towards the personal automobile. Cities across the nation are beefing up their alternative transportation infrastructure, often at the expense of cars. Portland is embarking on a massive bicycle infrastructure project to increase the mode share from 6% to 25%. New York City permanently closed off portions of Broadway in Times Square to vehicle traffic. And for the first time since the automobile era began the vehicles per person was less at the beginning of the decade than at the end. The biggest clue to me that things are changing: Los Angeles, birth place of the car culture, is embarking on an expansion of public transit that’s so ambitious that other cities are looking to the city for inspiration.