The Monday Roundup

Posted by on June 29th, 2009 at 11:43 am

Climate legislation; more TriMet service cuts; SF gets new bike lanes again; removing highways; bikes on bridges; time travel on 5th Ave; carfree Fridays; road rage; bikewashing.

There has been a lot of good news in transportation in the past week. Here are some of the highlights:

– The US House has passed a new, big climate bill that will allow states to choose to spend a significant chunk of their carbon emissions allowances on green transportation, reports Streetsblog from Capital Hill.

– In Oregon we now have a new law creating a Greenhouse Gas Emissions Task Force that will look particularly at transportation and land use strategies.

– In Portland, TriMet has proposed more service cuts, and reducing fareless square to include rail only.

– After three years in limbo, San Francisco’s bike plan has been approved. New bike infrastructure will be built in the city for the first time since a lawsuit halted all new projects until the plan’s climate impact could be studied.

– The Hartford Courant, Connecticut’s major newspaper, wants the state to completely remove a major freeway that cuts through the middle of the capital city rather than making the investment in maintaining it. (via Streetsblog)

– Given skyrocketing bike traffic, the lanes on the Burrard Bridge in Vancouver, BC will be restriped for a trial period, replacing one of the six auto lanes with a bicycle lane, and devoting the opposing sidewalk to bicycles — people on foot will be diverted to the other side of the bridge.

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– Latest in road rage travesties, from NYC, in the “you have to read it to believe it” category: “DA files charges against cyclist attacked by SUV driver in 9th Avenue bike lane.”

– Portland area US Rep Earl Blumenauer holds forth in the Huffington Post about transportation being a key element to battling climate change. And US Sen Chuck Schumer from New York sings the praises of bicycling in the same pages.

– In Seattle, you can get a free bike in exchange for a pledge to reduce your driving.

– Pittsburgh’s bike advocates are the latest to initiate a Carfree Fridays campaign (LA’s program has been in place for several months).

– In the UK, the town of Colchester is embroiled in an ongoing debate on the merits of making its central, historic downtown street carfree.

– The New York Times takes us back in time to 1909, when 5th Avenue (recently made carfree) was widened to increases space for cars.

– “Bikewashing” takes off as a cultural phenomenon, as major brands increasingly use bicycles in guerrilla style marketing campaigns.

– Local blog Portlandize sings the praises of carrying things by bike.

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bahueh
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bahueh

the “US” has not passed a bill yet…it has yet to go through the Senate, where it will, in high likelihood, die or come out a very different proposition before hitting Obama’s desk…

Thanks bahueh. We’ve corrected the story. — Jonathan

BikingViking
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BikingViking

Also wanted to mention that the bill that passed the house is wrought with problems. Read DeFazio’s rationale for why he voted against it. I’m undecided if this bill is better than nothing in its current form.

redhippie
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redhippie

Trimet has an interesting problem. The more riders they have, the less service they can afford to provide.

They need a new buisness model to not be reliant on subsidies from the tax payer. Perhaps they could use development charges from the areas nost served by the system to pay for it. Similar to the deal worked out to pay for the airport extension.

bahueh
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bahueh

hey, no problem Maus!
(I do a lot of editing for a living)

Patrick Mc
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Patrick Mc

And Sec. of Transportation Ray LaHood is coming to Portland on Wednesday to check out the Streetcar, MAX, and bike facilities and talk about ‘livable communities.’ Wish I didn’t have to go back to Baltimore.

http://www.oregonlive.com/news/index.ssf/2009/06/us_transportation_secretary_to.html