Metro News Now, August 6: Dodger Stadium Express readies itself for post-season, Uber & Lyft vs traffic

As of 10:30 a.m. today, trhe Dodgers have an 18-game lead in the NL West over the D-Backs and the Giants. That means their magic number is now 30, which means that they could clinch the division by Labor Day. Which means the post-season is basically a mortal lock for the Boys in Blue, meaning the Dodger Stadium Express’ season will once again stretch into October.

Scanning the National League horizon, do you see any teams capable of taking out the Dodgers in a five- or seven-game playoff series? I don’t. The Atlanta Braves can hit but their pitching is nowhere near that of the Dodgers. The Cubs peaked three years ago. And that’s about it, contender-wise.

I’ve already marked Oct. 22 on my work calendar with “Dodgers open World Series against Yankees, Twins or ‘Stros.” The only thing left to do is figure out a clever premise for the Dodger Stadium Express video. We’ve got ideas for the Yankees and Twins, the Astros are a struggle.


In the news…

•Uber and Lyft released a study of how many miles are driven by their cars compared to all vehicle traffic in six metro areas and counties, including the L.A. metro area and L.A. County.

Excerpt from Uber’s blog post:

This study found that overall VMT share at the metropolitan level and at the core county level consists overwhelmingly of non-Transportation Network Company (TNC, shorthand for Uber and Lyft) traffic — that is, personal and commercial vehicles for the six regions studied: Boston, MA; Chicago, IL; Los Angeles, CA; San Francisco, CA; Seattle, WA; Washington, DC. The research shows that despite tremendous growth over the past decade, TNC use still pales in comparison to all other traffic, and although TNCs are likely contributing to an increase in congestion, its scale is dwarfed by that of private cars and commercial traffic.

I feel like that’s probably accurate. Do you? It’s worth noting that the impact on traffic is probably higher in other metro areas such as San Francisco and New York where car ownership rates were not as high as a place like car-friendly L.A.


Source: Uber.

Attentive readers know that Metro will be exploring potential fees for TNC companies such as Uber and Lyft — the idea being that the companies are making money from using a publicly-owned resource (not to be confused with making a profit as both companies are losing money overall).

An update from Streetsblog LA on planning and meetings for the NoHo to Pasadena bus rapid transit project.

•The city of L.A. is stenciling messages on sidewalks reminding folks it’s illegal to ride scooters there…but plenty of people are still riding on sidewalks, despite the potential for a $197 citation, reports LAist.

•An L.A. County sustainability plan would phase out gas stations in 30 years as cars would be powered instead by electricity, reports Curbed LA. Actually sounds do-able to me if automakers can make affordable larger electric vehicles with better range and quicker charging capabilities and government provides some tax credits. Some of those gas stations — putting aside the issue of whether the sites would need to be cleaned up — occupy some pretty nice real estate.

LAist also takes a brief look at those new TAP wearable bracelets. A few commenters weigh in — they want their phones/watches to be TAP cards (a phone app is coming).

NYT offers nine cities where transit offers great views — and the Expo Line makes the list for its perch offering vistas of mountains and the DTLA skyline.

•Dept. of It Sounds Familiar:

An easy Flickr search helps correct my boo-boo from last week in which I wrongly declared there’s no passenger rail service near Mt. Shasta.

Things to listen to whilst transiting: three podcast recommendations from the New Yorker, including one on a robust debate in Vermont about mass shootings.


4 replies

  1. It would be more interesting to see Lyft and Uber as a percentage of trips. Vehicle miles are going to be biased towards long-haul trips. I’m not interested in how many miles an Uber travels– I’m interested in how many are double-parked on my residential street.

    • Maybe. Just playing around with some names to fresh things up a bit.

      Steve Hymon
      Editor, The Source