Picture This, and Risk Arrest (N.Y. Times)
This story is interesting considering this blog’s recent foray into discovery great examples transit photography. It seems there’s a great rift between government agencies and the camera equipped public. One man was arrested for taking pictures at an Amtrak station – for an Amtrak sponsored contest. He was later awarded a five-figure settlement for his wrongful arrest – photography is protected by the first amendment – but all comment about this incident on his website has since been removed. Since we’ve been posting transit photographs, we’ve received a number of tweets from photographers worried about getting arrested. I don’t write ‘em, but Metro has a few photography guidelines, most seem to be in place in the name of passenger safety and smooth operation, that might be worth checking out.
Putting the American Commitment to High-Speed Rail in Context (Transport Politic)
The Transport Politic takes a look at the stark differences between European transportation planning and funding and the way things work here in the U.S. France is planning on spending €170 billion over the next decades to improve transport – and 95% of that money is going to projects that are NOT road based. Intercity passenger and freight rail project will receive or 50% of the funding. The U.S. on the other hand has a very vocal president and transport secretary in support of transportation alternatives – but their words can’t make up for the fact that there is a distinct lack of funding and planning to assume that the U.S. will be seriously moving from its auto-based transport model any time soon.
A perfect example of what was talked about in the previous headline: Streetsblog reports that a new energy bill sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid sets aside NO money for transit and instead provides billions for so-called green vehicles. Real change, it seems, is hard to come by.