Philadelphia Inquirer by Thomas Fitzgerald Would you walk an extra minute to a bus stop to knock 10 minutes off your trip? When a bus network evolves over a century in an old place like Philadelphia, idiosyncrasies build up that can complicate change. For instance, planners got into the habit of drawing long bus routes to try to limit transfers, a fact of life before SEPTA restructured fares last year to allow one free transfer per trip. “Some central routes have over 200 sto
By Cameron Roberts, Andrew Brown, Giulio Mattioli and Julia K. Steinberger When discussing low-carbon transportation and the question of why cars play such a dominant role in our society, it is often tempting to fall back on a comfortable and familiar answer: We drive cars because we like them! The COVID-19 pandemic, however, has radically disrupted people’s travel habits, with uncertain outcomes for car use. On one hand, it has resulted in empty roads, sold-out bike stores a
A return-to-normal gauge to watch is mass transit ridership, which continues to creep higher in parts of the country as people get vaccinated and emerge from lockdown. Why it matters: Ridership return is key for the big city systems — think San Francisco or New York — that are more reliant on fares for revenue. Other transit systems rely primarily on a variety of funding sources, like sales tax (which also took a pandemic hit). Flashback: City and state financials aren't as d
By Holly Herman The Pottstown Mercury Bicyclists who are little hesitant about driving in traffic will soon have a new text-message based route tool to navigate a safer ride. The Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission provided a sneak preview Monday afternoon on a Zoom meeting of a new navigation tool that can be used on a smartphone to help bicyclists find the best route to travel with the least amount of traffic. The details of the new route will be unveiled on May 3.
On March 13, 2020, at the onset of the pandemic, the Federal Transit Administration responded to the emergency by enabling transit agencies to spend federal funds to run buses and trains. It was a break with longstanding policy. Normally, federal grants are reserved for capital projects like maintaining track, buying vehicles, or building new lines. But faced with plummeting revenues and the imperative to connect essential workers to their jobs, it was obvious: Transit agenci
The number of Americans using a bike for transportation and/or recreation has increased during COVID-19 as more people look for socially-distant ways to commute or exercise. Early on in the pandemic the Chicago Department of Transportation offered a number of bike-share discounts, such as free Divvy rides for healthcare workers, plus discounted single rides and memberships for the general public, as a pandemic response. Chicago’s bike-share system saw a record number of rides
After a four-year hiatus, the United States is officially taking climate change seriously again. On Thursday, President Joe Biden pledged that by 2030, the nation will slash its carbon pollution 50 to 52 percent compared with 2005 levels. That goal, which represents America’s new “Nationally Determined Contribution” under the Paris Agreement, was announced during a two-day virtual summit Biden is hosting with leaders of the world’s largest economies, starting on Earth Day, to
Philadelphia and Montgomery Counties receive grade F for air quality in the latest State of the Air report by the American Lung Association. The report reviews data from 2017, 2018 and 2019. New research from the American Lung Association find that more than four in 10 people – a whopping 135 million in the US – live in counties with unhealthy levels of particle or ozone pollution. In their 22nd annual “State of the Air” report, released on Wednesday, the group examined feder