The Monday Roundup: Bad modeling, respect the land, WFH FTW, and more

Welcome to the week. Here are the most noteworthy items we came across in the past seven days.

Bad modeling: Vice takes a deep dive into the “broken algorithms” that create traffic models that dominate transportation politics — and why we should stop using them.

Racism in transit: An excellent overview of how transit agencies perpetuate systemic racism in everything from how they design their buses and trains to which routes the vehicles take.

Local retail climate: Bike shops are busier than ever in Portland but product shortages have made it hard for some to fully capitalize on the moment.

Troubling legislation: Micromobility advocates are worried that a bill regarding liability insurance being considered in California would effectively kill bike and scooter share.

Just say no: Transportation reformer Joe Cortright lays out his case against the $5 billion transportation funding package Metro hopes voters will approve in November.


Zero deaths: It’s not often we see the words “simple” and “end traffic fatalities” in the same sentence, but Strong Towns thinks they’ve have the magic formula.

Cargo bikes FTW: More major mainstream exposure for cargo bikes, which are booming in popularity thanks to the pandemic, addition of electric motors, and various other factors. (Don’t miss the part where they use my photo without permission, payment, or credit!)

E-bikes = more biking: Newly published research found that, “People who purchased an e-bike increased their bicycle use from 2.1 to 9.2 km per day on average, representing a change in bike as share of all transport from 17 to 49 percent.”

More space needed: There’s an effort afoot in NYC that reminds me of conversations we’ve had about the Hawthorne Bridge: People are calling on the DOT to make one outer lane of the Queensboro Bridge available to people on foot.

About the land: This call to respect and acknowledge native lands by an Indigenous mountain biker is beautiful, powerful and timely.

Health of micromobility: NACTO has completed a comprehensive count of bike and scooter-share rides across the country and the huge numbers show the crucial role these modes are having on urban transportation.

WFH tea leaf: In one of the clearest signals that commute habits will be forever altered by Covid-19, Pinterest just terminated a deal on a 490,000 new office in San Francisco.

Cars are the problem: Berlin was one of the first places to aggressively install pop-up bike lanes during the pandemic. Unfortunately a rise in single-occupancy vehicles (due to fears of public transit) has contributed to more fatal bike collisions than last year.

— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and
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