Metro specific tweets from LAT transportation reporter Laura Nelson:
We’ll post a Metro news release soon about the innovation effort.
•Things to listen to while sitting or standing around on transit: Fresh Air interviews writer Buzz Bissinger on the 25th anniversary of his book “Friday Night Lights,” which spawned both a popular movie and television show about small-town high school football in Texas. What’s interesting is that one of the themes of the book is that high school football was as good as it was going to get for many Permian Panthers. But, as this podcast explores, the successful book was also as good as it was going to get success-wise for its relatively young author.
The interview also takes an unusual turn with Bissinger discussing some of his addictions, which involve some adult themes for those with sensitive ears.
•Things to read while sitting or standing around on transit: Nice appreciation of Jon Stewart by David Remnick in the New Yorker. On the subject of peaking, I’m kind of glad to see Stewart moving on. The show is still great but I think it reached its nadir a few years ago and it’s refreshing to see that Stewart wants to challenge himself in other ways — perhaps as a film director — while he’s still relatively young.
A truck fire started the mess. This Vine says it all:
Another call for taxing motorists by the mile instead of (or perhaps in addition to) at the pump. In Oregon — one state where they’re actually trying this — the tax is 1.5 cents per mile. Here’s how it plays out according to this Beaver State graphic:
I guess they didn’t have a calculator handy in the ODOT offices, so I’ll do the math for you: the road tax resulted in about $95 more of taxes than the gas tax alone. With fuel efficiency of vehicles improving but Americans still driving a lot, the road tax is seen as a smarter way to ensure there’s money in the future to pay for road and transit projects.
Explainer: on transit integration or seamlessness (Human Transit)
Transpo planner Jarrett Walker responds in lengthy fashion to the NYT story over the weekend about the mess of different transit systems in the Bay Area and the seams between many of them (different fares, schedules, etc.). His answer to this: there is no firm answer and that big, centralized transit agencies may erase seams but also may be less responsive to customers.
As an aside, Metro CEO Phil Washington mentioned “seamlessness” at a meeting with Metro staff this a.m., saying that he certainly wants to see Metro and other transit agencies throughout Southern California work better together with more common fare media.
The chief complaint in this weed-diver seems to be that the firm in charge of the program, DecoBike, is putting too many bikes in tourist-friendly locations instead of commuter friendly locations. The program began earlier this year. Company officials say more locations will soon be added.
In other bikeshare news, CityLab is super-excited about a new study that suggests that bikeshare works well with transit in both D.C. and Minneapolis and, long story short, expands transit’s reach (which, of course, is the whole idea). This, CityLab writes, proves that bikeshare is a genuine form of public transportation, a sentiment I also saw bouncing around on Twitter yesterday.
I’m all for bikeshare but I also don’t think riding a bike is quite the same as riding a bus or train. Show me more protected bike lanes and I’ll get excited, thank you. Some me a proclamation about semantics and I’ll just go to sleep. Even writing about it makes me all yawny.
Over at Streetsblog LA, I think Joe Linton is paying attention to a more significant issue: the role of Metro TAP cards in checking out bikes when Metro’s bikeshare program begins in DTLA next year. Nothing firm on that front yet, but Joe raises some interesting questions about the process of putting enough money on a TAP card to participate in bikeshare.
Categories: Transportation Headlines