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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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