Transportation headlines, Fri., April 22

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. Happy birthday, Mom! -CCR

Los Angeles anticipates light rail line (NPR)

Just as we thought all the media coverage of the Expo Line safety event was over, NPR chimes in with a report from correspondent Mandalit del Barco. She draws comparisons between the Red Car trolleys of yore and the modern light rail that is returning to take its place. Metro CEO Art Leahy chimed in with an interesting point that I don’t think gets made enough, when people wax nostalgic about the Red Cars: Most Angelenos gladly embraced cars and lost little sleep over the dismantling of the trolley cars at the time. Of course, they also didn’t foresee the chaos of traffic, smog, accidents and sprawl that would ensue.

Another wonderful Long Beach first: Protected bike lanes (LA Streetsblog)

The city of Long Beach reached another big milestone in its effort to become the most bike friendly city in America. On Saturday, citizens will celebrate the installation of Denmark-style bike lanes — separated from traffic by a curb and row of parked cars — which will be the first on the West Coast. Writer Joe Linton notes that a big part of the appeal of these cycletracks is that their real and perceived safety encourages all types of riders to take to the streets on two wheels. Linton gives credit to the lanes’ realization to dedicated city officials who have embraced the bicycle as an important means of transportation.

I just made a new road on Google Maps, you can too (GOOD)

In an effort to fill in some gaps in its mapping tool, Google is reaching out to the world at large. Individuals are invited to make suggestions for inclusion in Google Maps, be it an unmarked walking path or the location of a favorite cafe. GOOD writer Alex Goldmark gave it a try in his Manhattan neighborhood and thinks it will be a boon to communities — especially when it comes to helping walkers and bikers find good routes, even if those routes aren’t on a marked street.