California High Speed Rail

Transportation Nation

TN MOVING STORIES: California Bullet Train Time Mandate Adds to Cost Increase, Hybrid Cars Safer in Crashes, and Happy 75th Birthday, Henry Hudson Bridge

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Top stories on TN:
NY & NJ Port Authority Chief Expects Transpo Building Push Once World Trade Center Is Done (Link)
NTSB Head: Distractions Behind the Wheel Have Always Existed — But Cell Phones Make It Worse (Link)
D.C. Pedicabbers Say Park Police Still Targeting Them (Link)

The Henry Hudson Bridge under construction (Photographer: Richard Averill Smith, June 19, 1936. Photo courtesy of MTA Bridges and Tunnels Special Archive.)

Part of what's complicating building California's bullet train: the fine print in the ballot measure requires the trip from San Francisco to L.A. to take no more than two hours and 40 minutes. (Los Angeles Times)

Starting today, the Chinese government says it'll levy duties on imported cars made in the United States -- which came as a big surprise to U.S. automakers. (Marketplace)

Hybrid cars are 25% better at protecting motorists from injuries in accidents than their conventional counterparts. (USA Today)

TIGER III grants will be announced today; we'll have the full story after noon today. Meanwhile, Transportation Issues Daily has a list of some of them.

The Takeaway follows up with listeners on using cell phones while driving. (Link)

Taking a bus ride across 42nd Street could take you back in time to the 1950s. (Gothamist)

The Henry Hudson Bridge, which links Manhattan to the Bronx, turns 75 today. (New York Daily News)

Tune into today's Brian Lehrer Show for a discussion about a recent court decision about selling unlimited Metrocard swipes, which ruled that it does not fit the definition of larceny. (WNYC)

Touching the hearts of bus drivers through touching ... oh, just watch the video. (Hat tip to Gothamist)

I Heart M15 from Paddle Productions on Vimeo.

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Transportation Nation

TN MOVING STORIES: Texting While Driving Up 50%, House To Hold Hearing on CA Bullet Trains

Monday, December 12, 2011

Top stories on TN:

What Cuomo's tax bill says about transit. (Link)
And: Cuomo says he'll include transit in his infrastructure fund. (Link)
Bloomberg is still optimistic that the governor will sign the taxi bill. (Link)

Waiting for a bus in L.A. (photo by Laurie Avocado via Flickr)

A federal audit says Los Angeles's transit agency failed to fully research its impacts on riders and communities, especially when eliminating bus lines, adding service or changing fares. (Los Angeles Times)

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee will hold a hearing this week on California's high-speed rail project this week. (Link)

The pre-tax commuter benefit rewards drivers more than transit riders. (New York Times)

And: if Congress doesn't act before the end of the year, the benefit expires. (Washington Post)

New Jersey's Urban Transit Hub Tax Credit program has become popular that it may be expanding to other types of communities -- diluting the original intent of the program. (NJ Spotlight)

Texting by drivers is up 50%, even as states pass laws against it. And what’s more, many drivers don’t think it’s dangerous when they do it — only when others do. (AP via Washington Post)

Ford kills a line of small pickup trucks, says demand is for full-size. (Marketplace)

The new Apple store at Grand Central Terminal is a good deal for New York's transit agency. (NY Daily News)

Deaths on Caltrain tracks are increasing--horrifying train engineers, who are the last people to see the victims alive. (Bay Citizen)

More on Rick Perry's Trans-Texas Corridor problem. (New York Times)

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Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: Feds Tell California It Can't Change Bullet Train Route, and NY Pol Wants Delivery Bike License Plates

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The DOT told California that it can't postpone the deadline to start construction of that state's $43 billion bullet train project --  or make changes to the route. (Los Angeles Times)

NYC's bus ridership is down, subway ridership is up; MTA says traffic congestion may be partially to blame. (Wall Street Journal)

Any officer suspected of ticket-fixing in the Bronx is being asked about it on the stand -- whether it's on a related case or not. (New York Times)

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee will hold a hearing today on how to boost rail service in the Northeast Corridor through private investment. (The Hill)

Jalopnik reports that one Austin resident found a baby owl perched on his bicycle tire.

Here's a good excuse for being late to work (photo by Adam Norwood via Jalopnik)

A New York City Councilman wants delivery bikes to have license plates. (NY Daily News)

KPCC chronicles efforts to make Beverly Hills bicycle-friendly.

Good writes that Texas is spending $4.4 billion to widen a 28-mile highway at the same time it's preparing to lay off 100,000 teachers.

Vancouver says it's on track to reach its goal of 45% of all trips into town being made by bike, foot or transit by 2020. (Vancouver Sun)

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In case you missed it on Transportation Nation:

-- thinking about taking your bike on a NY-area commuter rail this holiday weekend? Think again. (link)

-- as gas prices go up, so does ride sharing and transit use (link). And car sales go down (link).

-- the feds unveiled new fuel economy stickers (link)

-- the NY MTA's new website highlights transit apps (link)

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Transportation Nation

California: Florida's HSR Loss Could Be Our Gain

Thursday, February 17, 2011

(San Francisco–Casey Miner, KALW News) If U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood is unable to put together a deal to save Florida's high speed rail, California wants the $2.4. billion.  And California is likely to get a bunch if it if the Florida deal falls through: it has the most advanced program, after Florida, in the nation.

Governor Jerry Brown and Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein have already issued statements similar to those released after Wisconsin and Ohio returned their funds. "It is now clear that California will lead the way in demonstrating the viability of high speed rail to the rest of the country," wrote the senators; "The $2 billion that Florida rejected are more than welcome here," said Brown.

At least one congressman has also gotten in on the action; John Garamendi (D-Walnut Creek) wrote "we’re prepared to show the rest of the country what a modern transportation network looks like and will gladly invest every penny the federal government is willing to provide."

The politicians' statements get at the curious paradox of high-speed rail in this country: the more states reject high-speed rail because of perceived political and financial risk, the better the chance that the systems that do get funded will have the resources to avoid those problems. "The money reallocated to us from Ohio and Wisconsin enabled us to double the length of our initial construction," said California High Speed Rail Authority spokeswoman Rachel Wall. "We know how to use this money." Wall said the Authority is currently in discussions with the Federal Railroad Administration about whether and how California would obtain the funds.

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Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: DC Metro Has Bicycle Ambitions, NJ Transit Delays Increase, and Ford To Recycle Blue Jeans

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

The DC Metro wants to triple the percentage of riders who arrive by bicycle by 2020 and quintuple it by 2030. (Greater Greater Washington)  Meanwhile, WAMU explains how Metro's track circuits work--and what happens when they don't.

Does California's largest high-speed rail project suffer from the "absence of a credible financial plan"? That's a criticism in the first report released by the California High-Speed Rail Peer Review Group. (San Jose Mercury News)

Things are...not great on NJ Transit's Northeast Corridor line. "Since July, the railroad's on-time percentage has been lower than the previous year's in every month except November." And this is after a 25% fare hike last May. (Wall Street Journal)

Dallas's Green Line--a 28-mile rail line--is open for business. (Dallas Morning News)

The head of a NYC taxi drivers' union is suggesting that cabbies racially profile passengers. "It's our own committing these crimes against us. It's weeding out the criminal element." (NY Post)

Starting today, Santa Rosa County (Florida) begins its first foray into public transportation--a one-year trial for a bus system aimed at helping people get to and from work more easily. (Pensacola News Journal)

The U.S. State Department agreed to the framework for an open-skies aviation deal with Brazil, a move that would liberalize one of the most restrictive international airline pacts in Latin America by October 2015. (Wall Street Journal)

Ford will use recycled blue jeans for the interior of the Focus. (Alt Transport)

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