Transportation headlines, Wednesday, April 7

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.

America’s top bike towns — and L.A. isn’t one of them (Bicycling)

I can’t say I spit out my coffee when I looked at the list and saw that the only Southern California to make the cut was Long Beach. One big reason, I’m sure, is the lack of good long-distance bike routes, by which I mean safe ways for ordinary cyclists to travel five to 10 miles. Minneapolis, snow and all, grabbed the No. 1 spot on the list due its 120 miles of on- and off-street bike facilities. San Francisco, hills and all, also made the list.

Pedestrian deaths by train remain steady (USA Today)

The story looks at all types of trains and leads with an anecdote about a teen girl killed by an Amtrak train. Here’s the key graph:

Over the past 10 years, the number of deaths involving trains and motor vehicles has dropped 42% to 248. In the same period, deaths involving pedestrians have fallen 6% to 434, the Federal Railroad Administration says. “That’s (incidents with pedestrians) the No. 1 cause of death in the railroad industry,” FRA spokesman Rob Kulat says.

As we wrote in our recent series on the Blue Line, Metro is grappling with the same issue: train-vehicle incidents over the past 10 years have significantly been reduced by suicides and pedestrians struck and killed by the train have not declined.

If Reno makes a bid for the 2022 winter games, they need to figure out how to get people from town to the Tahoe resorts. Photo by Steve Hymon.

How Vancouver moved people during the Olympics (re: Place magazine)

The city reduced parking downtown, closed or reduced capacity on a few auto routes, increased transit options and encouraged people to get around in a variety of ways. And it seemingly worked, with motor traffic light and rail ridership surging. I’m willing to bet that someone in Denver — a town building transit at a breakneck pace — is taking notes in preparations for a possible 2022 Winter Olympics bid. And my memo to Reno-Tahoe: if you are really serious about your possible bid, you better think long and hard about improving rail service along the Sacramento-Truckee-Reno corridor that goes up and over the Sierra.