Metro gets a cameo in the official music video for “Pitch Perfect 2.” No Anna Kendrick-on-the-train however.
How a more inclusive “Bike Week” can help us move toward “Bike Life” (Streetsblog LA)
Sarah Sulaiman argues that Metro needs to target Bike Week more to the parts of our county where bikes provide a vital link for getting around by low income commuters. This is a good post and that’s a fair point. That said, one point that I do hope readers understand and I really don’t intend this to sound too ‘next-window-please:’ Metro can certainly supply some funding for bike projects and partner with affordable housing developers on Metro property. But it remains up to cities and/or the county (in unincorporated areas) to actually approve and build bike lanes and to allow more housing to be built near transit.
Which brings us to another issue that I’m sure will be debated going forward: the funding levels at Metro for these type of programs and how much lobbying Metro can or should do for projects ultimately under the jurisdiction of local governments.
Q&A with U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx (L.A. Times)
Transportation reporter Laura Nelson throws some good questions at Foxx, who was in L.A. yesterday as part of National Infrastructure Week. A lot of ground is covered but I zeroed in on this exchange:
Look, I’m all for more grade separations. But that requires an investment, and gets us right back to the same conundrum, which is that there are things that we can do to improve safety at our rail crossings, but it’s going to require some investment from someplace. Right now, we have some resources but not nearly what we need to do more of that.
Times: Where do you think that money could come from?
From Congress. (laughs) That would be a great place for it to come from.
Two of the accidents have been in Southern California this year and certainly got the interest of the LAT: the Metrolink collision with a pickup truck that somehow got stuck on the tracks in Oxnard earlier this year and an Expo Line accident in which the train hit a vehicle making an illegal left turn across the tracks adjacent to USC in April. In both cases, wayward motorists were at fault but there’s certainly a public policy question in play involving at-grade crossings and how much (if anything) can be done to make them foolproof.
Quasi-related: Secretary Foxx spoke as part of the UCLA Luskin Lecture Series last night at Union Station. Social media round-up here and you can listen:
The sounds of Metro (KCRW)
A rider talks about her ride and some of the frequent sounds, including the “now arriving…” ear worm.
Hey, you know what sounds I heard on Metro yesterday? (your answer is probably ‘I don’t know or care’ but as benevolent dictator of this blog, I give it to you anyway…
There’s no denying Los Angeles’ growing Olympic appeal (Boston Globe)
Columnist Joan Vennochi writes: “Anyone who believes the United States Olympic Committee isn’t yearning to switch its 2024 bid from Boston to a less ornery city also believes Tom Brady can do no wrong.”
The gist of it: The United States Olympic Committee earlier this year chose Boston as the American bid city for the Summer 2024 Games without (apparently) realizing that local support for possibly hosting the Games in Beantown wasn’t quite there.
USOC must send a letter to the International Olympics Committee in September confirming that Boston is America’s choice. Officials with USOC say that there is no ongoing discussion about L.A. (or any other city) being a fallback choice. If true, that means that there is no fallback position. Which, if true, means it’s Boston or bust for 2024. Which, if true, means the earliest Olympics could be in the U.S. — something that would likely please television and/or corporate partners — would be 2026 for the Winter Games or 2028 for the Summer Olympics.
Quasi-related interestingness: Salt Lake City, host of the 2002 Winter Games and another region doing the transit expansion thing, has made noise about the 2026 Games.
I’ve got chocolate truffles for everyone (Zocalo Public Square)
The latest in Zocalo’s ongoing series of profiles of Metro riders.
•No one seems to want a free book. My copy of “One Summer: America 1927” by Bill Bryson is still up for grabs. Email me if you want it.
•One more reason to Go Metro: avoiding post-apocalyptic Aussie thugs on your drive home.
Categories: Transportation Headlines