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 Transportation Headlines online newspaper, which you can also access via email subscription (visit the newspaper site) or RSS feed.
On the Green Line’s 18th birthday, Eric Brightwell gives himself a tour of the Green Line, which averaged about 42,000 boardings per weekday in June.
Newest train to come up short, at least at first (L.A. Times)
A look at the ongoing project and studies to bridge the 1.5-mile gap between the Crenshaw/LAX Line and terminals at Los Angeles International Airport via bus rapid transit, a people mover, light rail or a combination of those.
As the story notes, a lot of big questions remain about the project’s form and how close trains could get to the terminals. Another big question is whether Metro and LAX, which is run by the city of Los Angeles, can agree on the type of project and who would bear the cost. Measure R allocates $200 million to a project that could cost hundreds of millions of dollars more than that.
And then there’s this interesting X factor: what if Los Angeles decides for absolute certain to prepare a bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics? The Airport Connector project is currently scheduled to be complete in 2028 and I would expect an Olympic bid would add a sense of urgency to getting this particular project done to please Olympic officials. The Metro Board approved a Measure R project acceleration plan in June but its success will likely depend on getting federal dollars and persuading voters later this decade to extend Measure R.
Judge rules BART workers must stay on job next 60 days (San Jose Mercury News)
BART officials and workers will have almost two more months to hammer out a deal — or face the prospect of a strike. The sides remain at an impasse over a wage increase, with BART offering a 10 percent hike over four years and workers wanting a 15 percent increase over three years.
‘Shovel-ready’ bullet train delayed again (L.A. Times)
With a lot of design work still to do and property that still must be acquired, it appears that heavy construction of the first 29 miles of the bullet train between Madera and Fresno will not begin until next year at the earliest.
The headline part isn’t entirely surprising: California is the most populous state. But the story also points out:
The most dangerous train crossing in California is where Nogales Street crosses the tracks in Rowland Heights. According to a new federal report, it is the third most dangerous crossing in the United States. Forty-thousand cars cross the tracks, over which 52 trains rumble each day.
That intersection will eventually get an underpass for car traffic. NBC also provides viewers with this link to a Federal Railroad Administration web tool that allows users to compare safety at different rail crossings.
A clean car boom (New York Times)
Excerpt from this editorial:
Automakers sold more than 350,000 hybrid and electric cars in the first seven months of this year, up 30 percent from the same period in 2012. While these vehicles make up less than 4 percent of light vehicle sales, hybrids, which use electric motors and conventional engines, are now so mainstream that there are more than 40 models available. The most popular one, the Toyota Prius, is among the 10 best-selling passenger cars in the country.
As the editorial notes, the transportation sector accounts for 28 percent of the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions and reducing emissions from private vehicles will help lower that and help lowering smog and perhaps help reduce the impacts of climate change. The NYT’s ed board also notes that some smart federal policy in the way of tax breaks for consumers and loans for manufacturers has been a big help in getting more cleaner vehicles on the street.
The Gold Line celebrated its 10th anniversary in late July. This post includes some project history and some good construction pics.
Categories: Transportation News