Transportation headlines, Tuesday, Dec. 6

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.

As Washington drags its feet, states take the lead on mileage fees (StreetsBlog DC)

Americans are driving less and opting for more fuel-efficient cars and that’s a good thing. But it also means revenues from state gas taxes have been on the decline. With an increase in the federal gas tax probably impossible in an election year and federal funding increasingly uncertain, states are beginning to investigate alternatives such as adopting a mileage-based system that charges drivers for the distance they travel (vehicle miles traveled or VMT) rather than the gasoline they consume. Find out which states are marching toward legislation and how.

Four cities that need congestion pricing (This Big City)

People often come to Los Angeles and shake their heads solemnly at the effect urban sprawl has had on the environment and residents. But we’re not the only ones with issues. This short comparison looks at four cities and recommends congestion pricing as a tool to help alleviate traffic. Oddly, L.A. doesn’t make the list … perhaps in part because our ExpressLanes congestion pricing demonstration project is already in the works.

Wireless internet now aboard California Amtrak trains (KCET)

Wireless internet has been a requested service on many venues for many years and last week — on Cyber Monday, no less — it arrived on three California Amtrak lines. In Southern California it means that the 350-mile Pacific Surfliner, the second busiest route in the nation and one of the most beautiful, now has email to transmit those fabulous images.

Don’t wear those earbuds or earphones around train tracks (Pittsburgh Tribune)

Parents of teens and those who think of themselves as teens: Ditch those earbuds or earphones around train tracks. It’s essential to keep your ears open to sound … particularly when walking near trains but the same is true for driving. Sound is one of the clues that tells the story of what’s occurring in your surroundings. Sadly, according to statistics from the Federal Railroad Administration, 42 people in Pennsylvania alone were killed along railroad tracks in 2010. “It’s such a preventable, preventable tragedy,” an official said.

1 reply

  1. “…mileage-based system that charges drivers for the distance they travel (vehicle miles traveled or VMT) rather than the gasoline they consume”

    Public transit in across most of the US should move towards a similar model as well. Transit riders should be paying how far they travel, not a flat rate per boarding.