Transportation headlines, Wednesday, April 28

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.

Welcome to smog city (American Lung Assn.)

The Los Angeles metro area hangs on to its title as the smoggiest city in the nation as measured by levels of ozone, according to the American Lung Association’s annual report. And the next five metro areas on the list to follow are all in California and located in the Central Valley. There’s good news, sort of: when it comes to particulate air pollution (the stuff that gets stuck in your lungs) the Phoenix area grabbed the No. 1 spot for year-round levels and Bakersfield for short-term levels. And the bit city with the lowest ozone levels? Bismarck, North Dakota. Air pollution has many sources, but you need not look far to find one of them — it’s probably sitting in your driveway.

A streetcar trip down Market Street, circa 1906 (Market Street Railway)

A seven-minute film shot from the front of a streetcar rumbling down Market Street in San Francisco in 1906 has garnered over 1 million views on YouTube. Research indicates the film was made just four days before the great earthquake of that year and that the film only survived because its makers shipped it out of town to New York almost immediately after it was shot. There’s also a narrated version on the Market Street Railway website.

Cap that park! (Primary Resources: The Metro Library Transportation Blog)

Here’s a nice roundup of the four parks in the various planning stages that would sit atop freeways in So Cal. The idea, of course, is to take back some of the space that freeways took when they cleaved through different neighborhoods. The library also dug up a decades-old report extolling the recreational benefits of driving on the freeway system. “80 years later, we are considering placing public recreational space on top of the highway system that was planned in response to a surging population without nearly as much regard for open space,” writes the blog.