America’s low gas prices: a global perspective (Infrastructurist)
That headline may not offer comfort to beleaguered car commuters, but a little perspective is always a good thing. This piece from Infrastructurist — replete with intuitive graphs and diagrams — has perspective in spades. For instance, our mates in the United Kingdom pay almost 2.5 times more for gasoline than we do in the United States. One commenter on the story makes an astute observation: The U.S. sets oil prices (via tax policies) as if we were an oil exporting country, even though we import over nine million barrels of crude oil every day, sending billions of dollars out of our economy.
Thanks to Measure R local return dollars, cities across the county have a steady stream of cash for local transportation projects. The city of Los Angeles has dedicated 10% of its funds to pedestrian and bike infrastructure. Environmental writer Siel Ju points readers to the Sidewalk Bicycle Rack Request Form — the place to go if you want to see more bike parking in front of your favorite cafe, market or other business. The waiting list is not too long, so put in your request early and you could see a new bike rack in a month or two, “if everything goes well.”
A two-year transportation bill? Some say it’s a better deal (DC Streetsblog)
Streetsblog writer Tanya Snyder reports that Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) is floating the idea of a two-year transportation bill, as opposed to the typical six-year bill. The pros of a two-year bill? It could tie over federal transportation funding until the economy improves while maintaining full funding levels. If a six-year bill were on the table, some in Congress would be unwilling to fully fund the bill with current revenue levels. The cons? At the state and local level, it’s much easier to make long-term plans on big infrastrucute projects if there is funding certainty over many years, not just two.