Transportation headlines, Wednesday, Sept. 21

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.

Automated license plate readers at Metro parking garages? (Plus Metro)

A brief look at an item on tomorrow’s agenda for the Metro Board of Directors: a $2.9-million contract to install a camera and computer system capable of reading license plates on cars. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has such a system and Metro wants one to help catch bad guys. Here’s the staff report.

Tolls: coming to a road near you? (NRDC Switchboard blog)

Here’s the kicker and key sentence: “Currently, only 2,900 of the 46,730 miles in the interstate highway system are tolled — but that could soon change as more states grapple with how to fill their transportation coffers.”

Cities now compete on how well they build for pedestrians/bikes/transit (Crosscut)

The writer argues — rightfully, me thinks — that the cities that re-develop intelligently will be this generation’s economic winners. Surveys suggest that most 20somethings don’t want to live in the ‘burbs and about half their parents are ready to surrender the McMansion and move back to urban environments that offer parks, libraries, easy-to-access shopping and lots of ways to get around. The cities that capture those dollars will likely be the winners.

Man builds street legal Batmobile (Discovery Channel)

Yes, the car is cool and I wouldn’t mind driving to Mammoth in it. But here’s the unfortunate part: this is the style of Batmobile that was used in the four horrible/terrible/schlocky Batman films made before director Christopher Nolan got involved and made the awesome “Batman Begins” and “The Dark Knight.” And don’t give me any lip that the Tim Burton films were any good. They weren’t — just the typical thing for him: all style, no substance. On a related subject, wasn’t that just an awful ending to “Captain America?”

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