Alex Goldmark appears in the following:
Thursday, May 16, 2013
The bikes aren't even on the street yet, but New York businesses are planning for the launch of bike share later this month.
While some small storekeepers are bemoaning the big gray docking stations because they take up parking spaces for customers or limit delivery space, larger businesses are taking a rosy view of the city's new transit option.
Saturday, May 11, 2013
A study from Norway sheds a little light on what kind of person is buying electric cars, and how they drive.
Monday, May 06, 2013
New York City hasn't even finished laying down the 330 docking stations for its impending bike share program, but anticipation is spanning oceans. A Belgian company has released the first "live" mobile app for NYC bike share users, before there are any users. Take it as a sign of what's to come when the largest bike sharing program in the nation launches later this month.
Friday, May 03, 2013
Amtrak is getting reimbursed for the $20 million it spent pumping water out of flooded train tunnels during Sandy and additional money to fix infrastructure damaged in the storm. The federal government will give $30 million to the publicly subsidized company, which has said it suffered $60 million in damages from Sandy and needs $250 million to adequately prepare for the next storm.
For comparison, the NY MTA, which runs the NYC subway and commuter rail lines was much harder hit in its miles of electrified underground tunnels. The MTA estimates $5 billion in losses with several billion more needed to prepare for future storms. That agency has received $2 billion in federal relief funds with another $6 billion on the way.
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
UPDATE 6:05 p.m. ET: Instead of a bike rack, a massive barricade of rock now sits in front of a tony apartment building in the West Village--a building that filed the first lawsuit against NYC's new bike share program. But it's not clear who put the rock there or why.
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
The former chair of the House Transportation Committee supports expanding the airport in his home district, but opposition is coming from an unexpected corner: airlines. Congressman John Mica (R-Fla.) speaks with WMFE's Matthew Peddie about an airport as an engine of regional growth.
Meet Anthony Foxx, Young Transit-Loving Mayor, Employed by Bus Company, Tapped as U.S. Transpo Secretary
Monday, April 29, 2013
President Barack Obama's choice as the next head of the U.S Department of Transportation is a young urban mayor with a short track record and a fondness for transit.
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Changing the face of city sidewalks touches a visceral nerve for neighbors. So it's no surprise that as New York City prepares for the launch of a bike sharing program people are speaking out.
Monday, April 22, 2013
Among the Earth Day offerings for those looking to show support for Mother Earth there was: recycling old batteries in a three story tall recycling bin, or browsing guilt-assuaging consumer products made from pulped magazine paper, bamboo shoots or raw moral righteousness. There's also the more mundane act of riding transit.
Here are some stats that crossed the Transportation Nation email inbox this earth day.
Monday, April 22, 2013
North America is seeing a boom in bike sharing program launches. The number of cities planning to add bicycles as public transportation on the continent is expected to jump by 50 percent this year, bringing the total number to 53.
Friday, April 19, 2013
With a massive manhunt underway for the suspect in Monday's Boston marathon bombing, Boston's metropolitan area is experiencing near total transportation shutdown. And it's shocking in its scope.
Thursday, April 18, 2013
Jobs are moving from city centers to the suburbs. Chicago is pushing its infrastructure trust plan to urban planners. Portland is breaking character, and drones are floated as an eco-friendly alternative to other aerial options. Today's transpo news roundup is here.
Tuesday, April 16, 2013
UPDATE: 4:45 p.m. ET -- American Airlines is flying airplanes again after hours of delays due to computer problems. "Our systems have been fully restored, however we expect continued flight delays and cancellations throughout the remainder of the day," the company posted on Facebook.
Tuesday, April 09, 2013
Rail ridership continues to grow in America.
March was the best single month ever in the history of Amtrak, and October, December and January each set records for their respective months, according to a company spokesperson. (UPDATE: Full release here.)
All of that is despite the damage and closures caused by Sandy.
It's also because Amtrak has been setting ridership records for just about every year for the past dozen years (chart), so any growth -- whatever size -- is also a new record. Amtrak set 11 consecutive monthly records last year. (PDF)
Amtrak reports ridership numbers by fiscal year. For the first six months of FY2013 (October 2012 to March 2013), Amtrak grew about one percent over the previous six months, putting the rail network on pace to break the 2012 yearly ridership record, despite Sandy. The damage from that storm shut down much of the Northeast Corridor, Amtrak's busiest route, for days.
Amtrak will release line-by-line ridership numbers later this morning. A statement from the company says 26 of 45 routes posted ridership increases and suggested its growth is evidence for more sustained capital funding for a passenger rail network.
Why passenger rail is on the rise
A recent Brookings Institution report found that on shorter trips, passengers are shifting to rail. That's partly because airlines are scaling back on short haul flights, which aren't as profitable for carriers.
All of that means Amtrak has been slowly but steadily gaining travelers who used to fly, especially on the Northeast corridor.
Consider this chart from an Amtrak presentation showing how, over time, passengers traveling between Washington, D.C. and New York City have shifted to rails from planes. Of the people who flew or rode a train between the two cities in 2000, 37 percent of them took Amtrak; but by 2012, 76 percent were riding Amtrak.
Amtrak's D.C-N.Y. route is beating the airlines. The chart excludes cars and buses, which themselves are increasing dramatically despite a crackdown on so-called Chinatown buses, and longer-route planes certainly carry more passengers, but it's the trend that is telling, and confirmed in the Brookings report.
Beyond the Northeast, Amtrak is doing better as well, with some local clamor for more service on state-subsidized routes, even where it has little chance of breaking even financially. We'll see how ridership is doing on those routes later this morning when Amtrak releases its full passenger counts.
Saturday, April 06, 2013
When we think of the future of transportation now, it's cars that talk to each other, bullet trains and BRT. But 80 years ago, it was blimps. The centerpiece of New York City, the Empire State Building, even explored the idea of docking dirigibles atop it's soaring spire.
But then came the crashes. WABE in Atlanta took the 80th anniversary of the worst airship disaster in history to recall the fiery tragedy that helped end the dreams of blimps as mass transport. And as Jim Buress points out:
"The Hindenburg is easily the most recognized airship disaster. But it’s far from the worst. The USS Akron, seen here, crashed on April 4, 2013 off the coast of New Jersey. It's considered the world's worst airship disaster. That unfortunate distinction goes to the USS Akron, a navy airship... Seventy-three of the 76 crew members died."
WABE’s Jim Burress interviewed airship historian Dan Grossman of Airships.net.
Give a listen. The conversation starts with Grossman explaining what caused the crash off the coast of New Jersey.
Thursday, April 04, 2013
If you're looking for a secure career in the digital age, it may be time to get your plumber's license or learn to code.
Wednesday, April 03, 2013
NYU Langone Medical Center surveyed more than 1,400 pedestrians and cyclists who were admitted to Bellevue Hospital between 2008 and 2011 and gleaned some insight into pedestrian crashes.
So rather than using police reports, the team at NYU surveyed the people who were injured and passed through this hospital to find out more circumstantial details of the crashes. (But it also means people who were hit but didn't go to the hospital, or people who were killed, aren't in the study.)
Here are some other findings:
- Young, walking adults are the group most frequently injured by motor vehicles in this study
- Latino bicycle delivery men are especially vulnerable even though they are more likely to wear a helmet
- 44% of pedestrians were hit while crossing the street in the crosswalk
- 6% of people who were hit by cars were on the sidewalk
- 15% of pedestrians had consumed alcohol earlier
- 40% of cyclists and 25% percent of pedestrians hit were struck by taxis
- 43% of the cyclists injured were working, mostly delivery men.
- 21% of cyclist hit were in a bike lane at the time
- 15% of cyclists injured were doored
- Less than a third of cyclists in the study were wearing helmets
- Being obese reduced the likelihood of injury
So what are pedestrians to do? The study recommends separating traffic from bodies -- as in more bike lanes and more pedestrian plazas.
The study is behind a paywall, but you can read the abstract here.
Friday, March 29, 2013
These photos are beautiful. They're also sad, and hopeful, and quaint.
In the 1970s the EPA commissioned photographers to roam the country and document daily life in places like coal mines, riverbanks, cities, and even an early clean tech conference in a motel parking lot. The images were meant to be a baseline to measure change in the years to come, but there was no funding to go back to the original places.
The Documerica project photos are up on Flickr now (hat tip to FastCoExist for posting some of these gems). It's an overwhelming album of nostalgia for everyday life, but also, devastatingly depressing to see how dirty and toxic so many inhabited places could be in the 1970s ... and how little has changed in some places today.
What makes the project so powerful though, is how beautiful the photography is, even of the mundane moments, or tragic scenarios like kids playing in a river next to a power plant.
Strum through the albums yourself and share your favorites with us on our Facebook page and we'll add more pics to this post later on.
In the albums, there are also early editions of clean technology, like Frank Lodge's photos from the first First Symposium on Low Pollution Power Systems held at what seems to be a motel parking lot.
Friday, March 29, 2013
Top Stories on TN
Fung Wah Investigation Leads to 2nd, More Shocking Shut Down Order, Terrifying Quotes (link)
Poll: Fewer Than Half of Californians Support High-Speed Rail (link)
Dozens in Congress Press for Nat’l Bike and Pedestrian Safety Goals, Measurement (link)
With Plans Drawn, Maryland’s Purple Line Scares Some Business Owners (link)
Linking new gas drilling and energy revenues to transportation funding could solve funding problems, or scuttle chances for a bipartisan transpo deal. (Politico)
A company wants to build a giant vertical moisture fueled wind turbine of sorts that would be America's talled structure and generate wind energy. (Marketplace)
Photos from the NY MTA of the newly restored, old South Ferry subway station called back into service after Sandy damaged the new station. (MTA)
A recent legal paper makes the case that existing laws don't prohibit automated vehicles. (Atlantic Cities)
But maybe not if you wear Google Glass. W. Va could ban drivers in West Virginia from using the new face computers. (Wired)
There's a kerfuffle over foreign drivers in Florida (Sentinel)
To see if State DOTs are living out pedestrian-friendly values, Tri-State Transportation Campaign looked at the headquarters facilities from space of three state DOTs and evaluated them for walking. (link)
It one solution to pollution buildings that eat smog like this pretty one in Mexico City? (link)
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Thursday, March 28, 2013
The U.S. Department of Transportation has again formally ordered Fung Wah Bus company, one of the most well known "Chinatown bus companies" credited with helping to pioneer the now popular business model of picking up passengers outside of bus terminals and charging very low fares.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration ordered Fung Wah bus to halt operations between Boston and New York in late February after Massachusetts inspectors found cracks in the frames of many of the company's buses. Within days that order was escalated to a total shut down of the company.
Longtime riders bemoaned the loss of the discount bus they'd come to love and fear all at once. One even composed a music video tribute for the New Yorker.
Today's action from the U.S. DOT rescinds the previous shut down order and replaces it with another one that is more permanent. The original order was because the company would not cooperate with the investigations into poorly maintained fleet.
This shut down order cites "the absence of an effective systematic maintenance program," "fraudulent or intentionally false entries on inspection" and maintenance records, failing to monitor drivers to make sure they aren't on the road too long, not testing drivers for drugs or alcohol.
"Individually and cumulatively, these violations and conditions of operation substantially increase the likelihood of serious injury or death to Fung Wah Bus tarnsportation Inc. drivers, passengers and the motoring public," the order states.
The FMSCA investigation found that Fung Wah didn't just have a bad maintenance program, it had no maintenance program at all. "Indeed, to the extent that Fung Wah maintains vehicle inspection records and reports, these records and reports cannot be relied upon with any certainty because they purport to show that vehicles were inspected on dates for which the mechanic whose signature appears on those reports was not actually working."
If Fung Wah addresses all of that, the FMSCA could rescind the shut down order. But considering the "blatant disregard" for safety rules, it seems like a stretch to assume that will happen soon.
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