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Photo (cc) Metro Transportation Library and Archive

GOP Wants to Bring Transpo Policy Back to the 1950s [DC.Streetsblog]

Apparently, for Republicans, the big target for cuts appears to be transit spending. Tymon suggested to the Road Gang that the current $8 billion allocated for transit annually could shrink to $5 billion. The Road Gang was, apparently, relieved to see that transit would bear the brunt of the burden of spending cuts.

Meanwhile, Tymon said the Republicans want to bring transportation spending back to it roots in the 1950s – interstate commerce and travel, with a strong focus on the National Highway System. It all adds up to a possible revision of the longstanding 80/20 ratio governing highway and transit spending, with transit losing ground. Tymon confirmed that a new calculus could be coming.

Confessions of a recovering engineer [Grist]

In retrospect I understand that this was utter insanity. Wider, faster, treeless roads not only ruin our public places, they kill people. Taking highway standards and applying them to urban and suburban streets, and even county roads, costs us thousands of lives every year. There is no earthly reason why an engineer would ever design a 14-foot lane for a city block, yet we do it continually. Why?

The answer is utterly shameful: Because that is the standard.

State, Columbus Center developers in $5.5m accord [The Boston Globe]

The developers of the failed Columbus Center development in Boston yesterday reached a legal settlement with state transportation officials in which they agreed to pay about $5.5 million in cash and other benefits to clean up the fallow work site along the Massachusetts Turnpike.

The settlement requires the developers to fund road work, landscaping, and other upgrades on four parcels where they had begun building. The project stalled due to funding difficulties in April 2008, and then died in March, leading to a dispute over the cleanup.

Meanwhile in Providence, we allow developers to build parking lots because of hardship. Man up Providence.

Woman reading e-mail before crash given probation [ProJo]

A South Kingstown woman accused of checking her e-mail just before crashing into a pedestrian — and then leaving the seriously injured woman in the road — has pleaded no contest to felony charges.

Wales was reading an e-mail attachment on her Blackberry as she drove on South Road in Wakefield on Oct. 4, 2009, at the same time that Sheila Brogna, of Wakefield, was walking home, according to the attorney general’s office. Wales paused, but then drove off, until the police stopped her. Brogna was seriously injured.

Switching Gears: More Commuters Bike To Work [NPR]

Cycling has at least tripled over the past two decades in big cities across the U.S.

“It’s almost like a snowball effect,” says researcher John Pucher of Rutgers University. “People see other people cycling and they say, ‘Wow!'”

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