Things to listen to on transit: The New Yorker offers high praise for the second season of NPR’s Invisibilia podcast. I heard some of season one (and liked it) and season two — about how norms can eventually change — sounds intriguing. Seems to me that one of the things we’ve long discussed in this space is whether the L.A. region will forever be tethered to cars to the extent it has in the past.
My two cents on Pokemon: So…walking around staring even more at your dumb phone doesn’t strike me as a great stride for world civilization. If that makes me an Old Goat or Permanent Grump, so be it. If the Pokemon gets more to take transit, then fine. Obviously be safe and look up once in a while for obstacles and things that are actually real and not programmed. Quasi-related: my colleague Jody L. informs me that Star Trek: Next Generation predicted all of this and it almost led to an alien takeover of the Enterprise. So maybe this is a way for slimy Klingons to get their paws on Metro Rail.
Things to read whilst transiting: I just started the new book Seinfeldia, a great history of the show that argues that its influence on television and culture in general continues to this day (the last new episode aired in 1998). Oh how I wish the show was still on the air to mock the Digital Age and smart phones. Young Source Readers should immediately divert to the Elaine-stuck-on-the-subway episode.
Coming soon from SF Muni:
The SF Muni news release describes the coming feature:
Rate My Ride will allow you to provide specific feedback about any Muni trip in seconds. With a simple click to the left or right, you can rate your trip time, vehicle conditions and even the etiquette of fellow riders.
Rate My Ride is just one more way we’re making it easier for you to tell us how we can improve your SF transportation experience. Rate My Ride is simple, it’s interactive — plus, you can’t beat MuniMobile’s cute interface.
Clever. We collect reader feedback on our Twitter account. That’s not quite as structured as above — seems to me both ways have their advantages.
Things I saw on Twitter:
Google maps transit layer is awful. No expo or gold extensions months after open; gold shown w nonexistent loop. pic.twitter.com/n52lIHBcO6
— LetsGoLA (@VamonosLA) July 13, 2016
I'll continue to cover transit in New York City — and urban transit on a broader scale. More here: pic.twitter.com/hcZtjxzuS5
— Emma G. Fitzsimmons (@emmagf) July 12, 2016
This next one is interesting — and shows the Old Gray Lady is taking local transpo and infrastructure coverage seriously.
— NBC News (@NBCNews) July 14, 2016
Driverless cars won’t make transit obsolete (Seattle Transit Blog)
The post requires a few too many words to say that self-driving cars — if ever a reality — won’t create enough new capacity on roads to handle traffic demands. Most interestingness can be found in a graph near the bottom:
This is not to say that light rail will help eliminate traffic congestion. It will certainly help speed up commutes for those who ride it, but freeways are going to continue to get more clogged as population grows, people move further and further away from their jobs, and demand is induced any time road capacity is freed up, at least in an urban environment. Light rail will at least mitigate the rate at which congestion gets worse for those who continue to commute on the freeways, by moving tens of thousands of commuters off of the freeways.
Another way of saying it: self-driving cars may very well sit in traffic, too.
Quasi-related: Hat tip to Streetsblog LA’s Twitter feed for this!
Warehouses to give way to apartments in South Park (Urbanize LA)
At least 147 apartments plus potential work-live space or retail/restaurant space on the ground floor. The site is Flower Street — along the Blue/Expo tracks and east of the Convention Center. Nearest access to the regional light rail system will be at Pico Station.
Watch Los Angeles boundaries grow (I Got Charts)
Brief but interesting diversion.
New pricing structure for Santa Monica Breeze (Santa Monica Next)
The new, mostly lower prices go into effect Aug. 1:
The new pricing structure, which was approved by the City Council on June 14, replaces those with four pricing options: $99 a year, $25 a month, $7 a month for students, or $7 an hour for casual users. The annual and monthly passes include 90 minutes of ride time and the student membership no longer needs to be bought for a six-month period at a time.
The article, based on a Breeze news release, indicates the prices are intended to simplify the price structure and that ridership has been healthy. Okay.
As you may have heard, SEPTA (the agency in the Greater Philadelphia area) last week had to pull about a third of its commuter rail cars out of service due to cracks in the suspension system of relatively new cars made by Hyundai.
This post points out that due to some very dated Federal Railroad Administration rules, rail cars in America must be heavier and built differently than their counterparts in Europe and Asia. That drives up costs and makes it harder for rail agencies in the U.S. to purchase rail cars.
Remember the Vietnam Veteran memorial in Venice that was vandalized earlier this year? The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department issued a news release today, saying an arrest had been made in the case:
Angel Castro, a 24-year old, male, Hispanic, was taken into custody on Wednesday afternoon, July 13, 2016. He was wanted by LASD Transit Policing Division detectives in connection with the defacement of a Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in Venice, California just before Memorial Day this year. The wall is located at the rear of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority Division 6.
Castro, who uses the moniker “LITER” (pronounced LIGHT-er) was one of the four monikers identified earlier this month by the lead detective on the case, Michael Thibodeaux. Detective Thibodeaux secured a warrant for Castro’s arrest. Castro was taken into custody without incident in the Exposition Park area of Los Angeles by members of the Sheriff’s Department’s Transit Policing Division Crime Impact Team.
During the initial interview with Detective Thibodeaux, Suspect Castro admitted to his role in the vandalism of the Veterans Memorial Wall. Castro was booked at the LASD Century Regional Detention Facility for violation of 594(b)(1) PC – Felony Vandalism.
Categories: Transportation Headlines