Transportation headlines, Monday, August 27

A little Monday morning stupidness for you, dear readers. Hat tip: Grist.

A view of the suburban ghost towns surrounding Charlotte (Streetsblog network)

Some interesting photos of abandoned suburban projects far from the city core. Cautionary tale or sign of things to come if the economy recovers?

BART bike pilot underway (BART)

The rail agency in the Bay Area is allowing bikes on trains all day on Fridays, including during peak hours. Metro last year decided to allow bikes on trains at all times. Here’s a good video by the agency:

Arctic sea ice shrinks to new low in satellite era (NASA)

The extent of the sea ice covering the Arctic Ocean has shrunk to its lowest levels in the three decades since satellite observations begun. It was not an unusually warm summer in the Arctic, but it’s part of an ongoing trend that indicates the Arctic’s sea ice is “fundamentally changing,” according to government scientists.

Credit: NASA.

Taxpayers are gouged on transit costs (Bloomberg)

In this opinion piece that could use a lot more facts, the writer asserts that transit costs in the United States are generally more expensive than their European counterparts because of out-of-date procurement standards, a tendency to invest too much in pretty architecture and famous architects and courts that tend to side with contractors in disputes with government agencies. An enterprising local reporter — there are still some out there, right? — could borrow this idea and compare costs of California projects to some overseas or even elsewhere in America. It would take some footwork, but would be good knowledge to have.