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.
California Poised to Allow Personal Vehicle Sharing Services (Streetsblog San Francisco)
Car sharing is one of those great ideas that just hasn’t been able to reach critical mass in Los Angeles. Zipcar provides L.A.’s only car sharing service, and it only has cars at UCLA and USC which renders it pretty useless for the vast majority of Angelenos. The thing is, car sharing doesn’t really work in suburban areas. Now I wouldn’t call much of L.A. suburban but we do have suburban levels of car ownership compared to most big cities which means that most car-sharing companies aren’t going to want to invest. That doesn’t negate the need for such a service – a good car sharing service has the potential to take 15 cars off the road for each shared car. A car sharing company called City Car Share is working with California State officials to allow personal vehicle sharing – a concept that allows individuals to make their personal vehicles available for car sharing. This would take out the massive overhead risk that keeps car sharing companies from investing in certain areas and allows individuals to potentially profit from their cars – cars that would otherwise be sitting parked all day.
As if driving wasn’t expensive enough, Wired reveals that poor road conditions (something Angelenos know all about) causes about $335 worth of damage to a vehicle annually. Of course, Metro buses also ride on the pot hole ridden streets and suffer as well. Why are roads in such bad shape? Reports indicate that most highway funding goes to the building of new roads rather than the maintenance of existing ones. There are plans in congress to authorize a new transportation bill that will allocate hundreds of billions to road repair – but until then make sure you keep around an extra $335 to repair your vehicle.
Quick HOWTO: Airport Transit (Riding in Riverside)
The blog Riding in Riverside provides tips on how to get to all the major airports in the L.A region on public transit. He gives advice on getting to LAX, Ontario, Burbank-Bob Hope, Santa Ana-John Wayne and Long Beach. Personally, I’ve been to three of those airports (LAX, Ontario, John Wayne) on public transit and must say the advice is pretty spot on. There’s a few issues though: the blog says the Union Station-LAX Flyaway bus costs $3, it’s actually $7 for a one way trip. Also, the blog misses an easy (but time dependent) way to get to John Wayne Airport: the Irvine Shuttle. Although it only runs during morning and afternoon hours, the shuttle takes riders from the Tustin Metrolink Station directly to the airport in 20 minutes – and it’s a free ride with your Metrolink ticket.