Many European cities have “articulated trainsets”, which join cars together using bendy sections instead of having separate, isolated cars. The Transport Politic wonders why US systemms can’t. Metro spokesperson Lisa Farbstein says they’re not interested “just to change it”, though that’s not the argument for it; the New York MTA spokesperson says they looked into it a few years ago but it wasn’t cost-effective at the time. (The Transport Politic, Max D.) (Tip: Max D.)
Fairfax’s County Executive has included their Bicycle Program among its recommended budget cuts. The proposal would cut the program’s operating budget by $170,456, 45% of the current level. Fairfax Advocates for Better Bicycling is asking Fairfax County residents to write to the County Board. (Stephen Miller) (Tip: Stephen Miller)
Another beefs up pedestrian safety
Meanwhile, Montgomery Executive Ike Leggett is really serious about funding pedestrian safety, proposing increases in the budget to retime signals and study safe routes to school. Council staff are recommending lower levels of spending. The article also notes that “Without more spending, it would take 25 years before the county can address traffic dangers for students walking to school,” though without explanation. Is there a plan coming up that the County only revises every quarter century? (Examiner)
Stop the free tickets for elected officials
Mayor Fenty is refusing to give the DC Council their tickets to their special Nats box. Kwame Brown is considering legislation to sell the Mayor’s and Council’s boxes, saying, “It’s the people’s boxes. It’s the people’s stadium. Why does the mayor get the boxes?” (DC Wire) New York did the same. Hopefully Brown is serious and not just using this as a negotiating tactic. It’s unseemly for DC officials to get free seats after spending public dollars on a stadium.
New nominees for HPRB, Zoning Commission
Mayor Fenty has nominated Christopher Landis to replace John Vlach on the Historic Preservation Review Board. He also nominated Konrad William Schlater to replace Greg Jeffries on the Zoning Commission. Landis, an architect, is one of the of the founders of Landis Construction. Schlater was a Special Assistant to Deputy Mayor Neil Albert until last year, and now works forWilliam C. Smith + Co. The DC Council will hold confirmation hearings on Landis and Schlater on May 21st at 11 am and 12 noon, respectively.
Get There has early reports from last night’s Metro service cut hearing in Hyattsville. Catoe and Porcari both attended, though not Mikulski or other elected leaders who really have the power to solve the problem. According to Ben Ross, about 125 people attended, many talking about the very personal burden that removing bus service will impose on their lives.
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