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Archive | Like/Dislike

Like: In Seattle, Amazon plans to buy a streetcar and fund shorter headways

The Seattle Transit Blog reports that Amazon.com, which is building a shiny new headquarters complex in Downtown Seattle, plans to buy that city a new streetcar vehicle for service on an existing line and provide funding for shorter headway service.

The overall proposal includes $5.5 million of support for the Seattle Streetcar. This funding will allow the City to purchase an additional streetcar vehicle and increase operational support for 10 years as a part of the Planned Community Development benefit package. In total, these benefits will increase street car service to every ten minutes during the workday.

They will also be building other pedestrian and cycling enhancements in the area. Apparently all this is in exchange for the taking of a number of public alleys the company needs to construct it’s headquarters.

Imagine if we called on developers to give concessions to receive zoning variances and street abandonments.

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Like: Seattle’s Nickerson Street diet improves safety

Nickerson Street in Seattle

Image from Seattle.gov

The City of Seattle has released a report that their experiments with rechannelizing (i.e. putting the road on a diet) that city’s Nickerson Street has resulted in improved safety.

Completed by the City in August 2010, the modifications have produced the following results:

  • Reduced collisions by 23 percent over a one-year period (compared to the previous five-year average)
  • Motorists traveling over the speed limit have declined by more than 60 percent
  • Top-end speeders (people traveling 10 or more miles over the speed limit) have fallen by 90 percent
  • The 85th percentile speed dropped from 40 mph and 44 mph westbound and eastbound to 33 mph and 33 Westbound and Eastbound. This is an 18 and a 24% reduction in speed.
  • Traffic volumes remain roughly the same with no evidence of traffic diversion.

So LIKE for street safety and LIKE for Nickerson Street being a safer place now!

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Like: Medellí­n Escalator

Escalator

Photo from the Office of the Mayor, Medellin via Transportation Nation

Medellín, Columbia has installed this escalator as a form of public transit in one of the city’s poorest neighborhoods. As reported by the BBC, the escalator is built in 6 parts and climbs 1,260 feet. Before the $7million project the neighborhood’s residents spent on average a half hour to climb the hill; with the escalator the climb takes 5 minutes.

College Hill anyone?

And don’t forget, the best thing about an escalator is, “An escalator can never break–it can only become stairs. You would never see an ‘Escalator Temporarily Out Of Order’ sign, just ‘Escalator Temporarily Stairs. Sorry for the convenience. We apologize for the fact that you can still get up there.'”

See also: Transportation Nation

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Dislike: Oh by the way, Demo (Fuller Ironworks)

demo

Oh right, this building was torn down this week. The above photo was emailed to us, the below photo was shared in our Flickr Group.

Providence

Photo (cc) provbenson2009

People are saying this is the former Bevo Nightclub but we’re pretty sure Bevo was in the brick building next to it. I don’t really think anything has been in the this building for a long time, it has been quite falling apart-ie for a while, then pieces of it were flying off during Hurricane Irene.

See Also:
Providence Business News: 5 Questions With: Richard Baccari II
Art In Ruins

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Like: “Moses” Bridge

Moses Bridge

In the Netherlands, RO & AD Architects designed a unique bridge to cross a moat at Fort De Roovere in Halsteren [page in Dutch].

RO & AD architects found it really strange to create a bridge over a canal of a fortification. Especially because the bridge must be built on the side where traditionally the enemy was expected. Therefore, RO & AD architects created a bridge that is not visible from a distance….

The bridge they created places the people crossing it below the waterline, so when seen from afar, the bridge disappears. Hense, the “Moses Bridge.”

More photos and information at Architizer, My Modern Met, and de Architect [page in Dutch].

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Like: Chicago’s bus tracker at stops

Chicago bus stop bus tracker

Real time bus tracker at bus stop in Chicago. Photo from @CDOTNews on Twitter via Grid Chicago.

Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Director of the Chicago Department of Transportation Commissioner Gabe Klein (pictured, center with CTA President Forrest Claypool at left), announced today the installation of real-time tracking of buses at bus stops in that city.

It just goes without saying that I like this, right?

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Like: A train station with working clocks

Clocks

The whole train station is now all in the same time zone. Image submitted by Cliff Wood.

There is a very good reason why train stations have clocks, it is so you can know how long you have before your train arrives. So the fact that each clock on the clock tower at the Providence Train Station has displayed a different time for the better part of forever has been a terrible embarrassment.

So thank goodness, the clocks are finally fixed. The above photo was sent in from Cliff Wood at 9 o’clock this morning. This is almost as exciting as when the escalators were finally fixed.

Hooray!

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Like: New York Transit “On the Go!” interactive transit kiosks

On the Go! Kiosk

Image (cc) MTAPhotos

New York’s Metropolitan Transit Authority has begun rolling out these interactive kiosks in subway stations.

The sleek, stainless steel enclosure supports a large screen with a colorful display, offering customers information about their entire trip, from planning with Trip Planner , real-time service status, escalator & elevator status and local neighborhood maps. In addition, the MTA has partnered with third party developers to include applications which provide additional information, such as local history, shopping and dining options nearby provided by third-party applications Zagat, myCitiapp, and History Bus. As added features, the screens will provide news and weather information. Taken together, this is an unprecedented amount of information made available to subway and commuter rail customers in one handy tool.

Pretty cool. I’m heading to New York next month and will try to find one.

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Dislike: Zipcar ad

Zipcar ad

This image was making the rounds on Twitter last week, it looks like it was first Twitted by Bike Blog NYC.

As you can see, the ad depicts a couple of business people very inefficiently carrying a bunch of crap whilst riding bikes in business attire. Their problems could easily be solved by a good messenger bag or some saddle bags on their bikes. They don’t actually need cars.

Yes, the whole point of Zipcar is that indeed, sometimes you might actually need a car. It is great that this company exists for those of us who choose not to own cars. However, implying that it is simply impossible to get to your office without a car is not a message that us car free individuals repsond too. People who feel that way own cars and are not Zipcar’s target audience.

It is actually quite possible for a business person to get to their office on their bike, without need for a car.

Tokyo businessman

Tokyo businessman. Photo (cc) acjeppo

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Dislike: NPPD parked on the sidewalk

North Providence Police car parked on the sidewalk

One would think that the North Providence Police would be aware of their PR problem, but that does not stop them from coming to Providence and parking their cars on our sidewalks.

This is at Richmond and Clifford behind the courthouse, and to be fair (though really, there’s no excuse) the entire sidewalk on Clifford from Dorrance to Richmond is littered with cars; presumably driven by people going to court. Why this is allowed to happen when the Courthouse has a superblock sized parking lot behind it, which is never full, is beyond me.

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Dislike: Walking in the street

Photo by Andy Morris

Yes, everytime I run into someone downtown they say, “are you going to write about the sidewalks on Washington Street?”

Truth is, I’m totally avoiding Washington Street if I can help it. A bunch of things are conspiring to result in there often being no sidewalk on either side of Washington Street.

One thing is good, we like it, new sidewalks are being installed, yay! However, when work is being done on a sidewalk, there needs to be a place for people to go, either make pedestrians cross if there is no room, or block off a secion of the road.

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