Transportation headlines, Monday, April 11

Here is a look at some of the transportation headlines gathered by us and the Metro Library. The full list of headlines is posted on the library’s blog.

The New Congress makes its claim on the budget (The Transport Politic)

A last minute budget agreement on Friday kept the federal government running for a short time, but The Transport Politic’s Yonah Freemark predicts that transportation and infrastructure spending will be the first to go in any final budget decision. House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) has proposed a budget that would make transportation the largest cutback, reducing spending by 55.6 percent. Freemark observes that the America Fast Forward plan has actually gained some steam because of Congress’ unwillingness to raise taxes for transportation spending.

Using CicLAvia to plan your streets (Placemaking Blog)

The second CicLAvia has come and gone, and while it was certainly a great event, it was just that – an event. How can we take the lessons learned from CicLAvia and apply it to our day-to-day lives? The Placemaking Blog says that the events, when held regularly, can create momentum for long-term change by engaging the community in livable streets issues in a way that’s not dry and bureaucratic. Yesterday’s event certainly opened up my eyes to the transformative potential of car-free streets in L.A.

Transit apps : benefit or crutch? (NexTransit)

NexTransit develops transit apps but wonders if technology is being used to take transit agencies and local governments off the hook from providing great transit service. If transit apps make unreliable service more bearable, will an agency do anything to address the unreliable service? My two cents: I think transit apps are just another tool that agencies can use to improve the customer experience in a world where the resources necessary to create a “perfect” transit system are often scarce.

Coming soon: look for a review of NexTransit’s NexTime app for iPhone here on The Source. It’s the first 3rd party app to use Metro’s new real time bus arrival data.