Green Lane Project in New York: City to City Solutions

The Green Lane Project is a partnership of six U.S. cities working to implement next-generation protected bike lanes on city streets. 

The Green Lane Project cities are: San Francisco, Memphis, Chicago, Portland, Austin, and Washington, D.C.

massurban:

“Can Light Rail Carry a City’s Transit System?
ERIC JAFFE. August 1, 2012
We often think of light rail as a single component of a larger transit system, but if it’s done right it can just as soon serve as the foundation. Since 1981 a dozen American cities have built light rail lines atop bus-only systems. In five of them — Dallas, Portland, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, and San Diego — light rail now accounts for at least 30 percent of all transit ridership in the metropolitan area, even as it covers less than that much service space in the region.
Transit researchers Gregory Thompson and Jeffrey Brown of Florida State, known for their espousal of multi-destination transit systems, recently took a closer look at these light rail systems to determine what characteristics define the best of the best. In a recent issue [PDF] of the Journal of Public Transportation, Thompson and Brown identify two of these “backbone” systems in particular — Portland and San Diego — as far more efficient than the others.
Thompson and Brown settled on three key factors in the success of these systems. First, a great light rail system anchors a transit network that’s dispersed throughout a metro area. Second, it acts as an express regional alternative to the local bus network. And third, it promotes transfers between the bus and rail systems. The researchers believe these traits can serve as guides for future light rail planners “by setting forth attributes that these services need to possess in order to attract substantial ridership.”
In good Olympic spirit, the researchers then judged all five of the above “backbone” systems and gave them scores of up to five points on each success marker, for a possible total of 15 points. Here’s how the light rail systems placed, from highest- to lowest-scoring. (Caveat: the data were collected circa 2007, which made the evaluations especially unfavorable to Salt Lake City’s popular TRAX system, so we’ve omitted that here.)”
Via: The Atlantic Cities
Photo: Flickr user TriMet via Creative Commons

massurban:

“Can Light Rail Carry a City’s Transit System?

ERIC JAFFE. August 1, 2012

We often think of light rail as a single component of a larger transit system, but if it’s done right it can just as soon serve as the foundation. Since 1981 a dozen American cities have built light rail lines atop bus-only systems. In five of them — Dallas, Portland, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, and San Diego — light rail now accounts for at least 30 percent of all transit ridership in the metropolitan area, even as it covers less than that much service space in the region.

Transit researchers Gregory Thompson and Jeffrey Brown of Florida State, known for their espousal of multi-destination transit systems, recently took a closer look at these light rail systems to determine what characteristics define the best of the best. In a recent issue [PDF] of the Journal of Public Transportation, Thompson and Brown identify two of these “backbone” systems in particular — Portland and San Diego — as far more efficient than the others.

Thompson and Brown settled on three key factors in the success of these systems. First, a great light rail system anchors a transit network that’s dispersed throughout a metro area. Second, it acts as an express regional alternative to the local bus network. And third, it promotes transfers between the bus and rail systems. The researchers believe these traits can serve as guides for future light rail planners “by setting forth attributes that these services need to possess in order to attract substantial ridership.”

In good Olympic spirit, the researchers then judged all five of the above “backbone” systems and gave them scores of up to five points on each success marker, for a possible total of 15 points. Here’s how the light rail systems placed, from highest- to lowest-scoring. (Caveat: the data were collected circa 2007, which made the evaluations especially unfavorable to Salt Lake City’s popular TRAX system, so we’ve omitted that here.)”

Via: The Atlantic Cities

Photo: Flickr user TriMet via Creative Commons

On The Right Track - The Architect’s Newspaper
An autocentric culture sets a high bar for the rest of the nation as mass transittled by light raillchugs ahead on the West Coast.
National attention focused on the recent opening of the Expo Line, an 8.6-mile light rail route that connects downtown LA with Culver City. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Before all is said and done, Los Angeles —long stereotyped as a car-only city—will have more than 100 miles of public transit lines, as the West Coast, home to the nation’s first light rail line in San Diego and to its most comprehensive light rail system in Portland, continues to add a slew of new rail.
New lines, stations, infrastructure, and transit-oriented developments are popping up and in planning stages in and around Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Sacramento, Los Angeles and San Diego. And if you count West Coast–adjacent cities such as Phoenix and Denver, there are even more. Los Angeles and Seattle are set to double their offerings while Marin and Sonoma are just beginning to add rail to the mix.

On The Right Track - The Architect’s Newspaper

An autocentric culture sets a high bar for the rest of the nation as mass transittled by light raillchugs ahead on the West Coast.

National attention focused on the recent opening of the Expo Line, an 8.6-mile light rail route that connects downtown LA with Culver City. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Before all is said and done, Los Angeles —long stereotyped as a car-only city—will have more than 100 miles of public transit lines, as the West Coast, home to the nation’s first light rail line in San Diego and to its most comprehensive light rail system in Portland, continues to add a slew of new rail.

New lines, stations, infrastructure, and transit-oriented developments are popping up and in planning stages in and around Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Sacramento, Los Angeles and San Diego. And if you count West Coast–adjacent cities such as Phoenix and Denver, there are even more. Los Angeles and Seattle are set to double their offerings while Marin and Sonoma are just beginning to add rail to the mix.

How did snowy Minneapolis beat out Portland, Ore., for the title of best bike city in America? This year, Minneapolis is adding 57 new miles of bikeways to the 127 miles already built, and an additional 183 miles are planned over the next 20 years.


Short film by the Congress of New Urbanism, an advocacy group for more pedestrian friendly neighborhoods and diversity of housing types, highlighting instances where highways have decreased quality of life and property values for communities, and removing them vastly improved, well, everything.  I would say, they do have a point - unless you’re travelling interstate, highways don’t always speed things along.   

Fun fact from the video: Vancouver, BC doesn’t have ANY highways! And yet they get along just fine.

Extra: another video case study from the city of Portland, Oregon which also did away with certain stretches of freeway and filled in the areas with…parks. Leslie Knope would be proud.  

via hwysnbywys:

(via )

smarterplanet:

Zipcar Adds Plug-In Prius Hybrids to Its Fleet
Source: Fast Company
 
The next generation of electric cars is now available to the car-less—at least, to Zipcar members in Boston, San Francisco, and Portland.
The car-sharing service announced this week that eight Toyota Prius plug-in hybrids are now available to those three cities as part of a pilot program that will explore how the technology can work in large-scale car-sharing programs.
“Zipcar is an ideal test bed for early consumer acceptance of EVs,” said Scott Griffith, Chairman and CEO of Zipcar, in a statement. “This project will allow companies to receive direct feedback from thousands of consumers in three cities and help evaluate how EVs fit into a large-scale car sharing model.”
Toyota’s plug-in Prius, set to be released to showrooms in 2012, can travel on pure electric power up to 62 MPH for approximately 13 miles before shifting into conventional Prius hybrid mode, where it averages 50 MPG. Zipcar is planning on charging its fleet using both conventional 110-volt outlets (a three-hour charge time) and 220-volt chargers (a 90-minute charge time). Customers will be allowed to take the plug-ins out for $7 per hour.

smarterplanet:

Zipcar Adds Plug-In Prius Hybrids to Its Fleet

Source: Fast Company

The next generation of electric cars is now available to the car-less—at least, to Zipcar members in Boston, San Francisco, and Portland.

The car-sharing service announced this week that eight Toyota Prius plug-in hybrids are now available to those three cities as part of a pilot program that will explore how the technology can work in large-scale car-sharing programs.

“Zipcar is an ideal test bed for early consumer acceptance of EVs,” said Scott Griffith, Chairman and CEO of Zipcar, in a statement. “This project will allow companies to receive direct feedback from thousands of consumers in three cities and help evaluate how EVs fit into a large-scale car sharing model.”

Toyota’s plug-in Prius, set to be released to showrooms in 2012, can travel on pure electric power up to 62 MPH for approximately 13 miles before shifting into conventional Prius hybrid mode, where it averages 50 MPG. Zipcar is planning on charging its fleet using both conventional 110-volt outlets (a three-hour charge time) and 220-volt chargers (a 90-minute charge time). Customers will be allowed to take the plug-ins out for $7 per hour.

Worldchanging: Bright Green: Future City: Portland & Networked Urban Sustainability

In preparation for our Future City event this Friday, we’re comparing progress towards urban sustainability in Portland and Seattle.
When cities first stepped up as leaders in climate action, a few  simple projects would get you noticed. For a good 15 years, just doing  anything set you apart. But, almost without realizing it, we have walked  into a new phase of urban sustainability – version 2.0 – where cities  are being pushed to tackle the really tough issues. Retrofitting City  Hall is nice, but the real game revolves around how we plan and travel  through our cities, how we build and run our buildings, and how we make  and use energy.  “Go big” as they say “or go home.”  Or in this case “go  big at home.”

Worldchanging: Bright Green: Future City: Portland & Networked Urban Sustainability

In preparation for our Future City event this Friday, we’re comparing progress towards urban sustainability in Portland and Seattle.

When cities first stepped up as leaders in climate action, a few simple projects would get you noticed. For a good 15 years, just doing anything set you apart. But, almost without realizing it, we have walked into a new phase of urban sustainability – version 2.0 – where cities are being pushed to tackle the really tough issues. Retrofitting City Hall is nice, but the real game revolves around how we plan and travel through our cities, how we build and run our buildings, and how we make and use energy. “Go big” as they say “or go home.” Or in this case “go big at home.”

Portland’s EcoDistricts Initiative

In 2009, the Portland Sustainability Institute, in partnership with the City of Portland, launched the EcoDistricts Initiative as part of the Portland region’s broadening commitment to sustainability.  The EcoDistricts Initiative is a comprehensive strategy to accelerate sustainable neighborhood development.  An EcoDistrict is a neighborhood or district with a broad commitment to accelerate neighborhood-scale sustainability.  EcoDistricts commit to achieving ambitious sustainability performance goals, guiding district investments and community action, and tracking the results over time.

EcoDistricts Road Map