Today’s Zocalo Public Square profile of a Metro rider: A welcome umbrella at the bus stop, Third Street to Hollywood Boulevard
As this post notes, it’s often hard to come by solid information about Americans’ biking habits. In short, the survey found that while many Americans own a bike, many also fail to use them frequently because of fears of traffic and getting hit by a motor vehicle.
I don’t think those results are hugely surprising, but it’s good to see them quantified. I also think it’s a reminder that skeptical cyclists probably aren’t going to use bike lanes that they don’t believe protects them from traffic.
Meanwhile, KPCC has an article that includes statistics from 2012 on the top reasons behind car-bike collisions according to the CHP. The numbers indicate that cyclists are more often at fault for accidents that motorists and that riding on the wrong side of the road is the top reason for biker-caused accidents (as the article states, many cyclists were taught or believe that this is a good way to avoid getting hit from behind). The top reason for motorist caused accidents is failure to yield right-of-way.
Interesting…and I think another good reason to provide safe places for cyclists to get around our region and not just their neighborhoods.
A critique of the recent study and ensuing articles that jobs are shifting back toward urban cores. This article says a closer read of the study shows that while on average jobs moved toward cities, in 20 of 41 metro areas, job creation was equal or greater in the ‘burbs and that many cities, in fact, lost jobs during the years covered in the study.
Writer Jacob Anbinder writes that job growth in cities is really best studied on a case-by-case basis and that trend stories tend to blur facts and what may be working and what’s not.
Only five metro areas in the study showed stronger core growth both before and during the recession. Two of them, New York and San Francisco, are known for their excellent mass transit, high population density, and walkable neighborhoods. Two more, Indianapolis and Nashville, are famous for their commitment to regional decision-makingthat doesn’t pit cities against suburbs.
Does all this mean cities aren’t on the rebound? I don’t think so. I think there’s another issue that tends to get blurred: even in cities that may not be seeing downtown job growth, there may be neighborhoods that are being revived. Which strikes me as a good thing.
Your credit card is now your fare card on the Mumbai Metro (CityLab and Times of India)
The CityLab article explains it better; the story was first reported by the Times. The debit card actually includes two separate accounts — the debit card account and a fare card account. When the fare card account gets too low, it automatically reloads using money from the debit card. From CityLab:
The use of bank cards at transit turnstiles should get noticeably easier this fall. The credit card industry has set an October 2015 deadline for U.S. banks and merchants to adopt the so-called EMV (Europay, MasterCard, and Visa) card standard, lest they remain liable for fraud. A shift to chip-based EMV cards marks a huge security upgrade from current magnetic-strip technology and could further encourage U.S. transit agencies to blur the lines between bank and fare cards.
“That’s going to make a big difference in the way the cards function,” says Brown. “You’ll be able to tap that card on the turnstile and go.”
Of course, transit agencies will still have to decide whether to adopt that technology. In the U.S. these days, many large agencies are using reloadable fare cards similar to Metro’s TAP cards.
Things to read on transit: Metro serves plenty of local high schools, colleges and universities (with more to come–I’m talking to you, Citrus College and Azusa Pacific University). And so I thought our mathematically inclined riders would enjoy this article from Cornell University that uses some advanced math to calculate zombie dispersal across the U.S. should such an outbreak occur. Bottom line: big cities such as Los Angeles are certainly not a great place to be but some smaller cities such as Bakersfield are even more at risk due to being close to many larger cities. And, of course, this reminder to zombies: no eating on board our buses and trains, please. There are likely plenty of food opportunities after reaching your destination!
Things to listen to on transit: I recently had one of those very unpleasant online experiences that reminded me of this recent episode on This American Life about the lack of civility (to put it lightly) on the internet. The title: If you don’t have anything nice to say, SAY IT IN ALL CAPS. It’s a great listen with some valuable insight about the ways we use the internet, but the show also includes some very adult language and situations. If easily offended, don’t listen.
Categories: Transportation Headlines