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Biking for short trips equals significant health benefits

A new study conducted at the University of Wisconsin-Madison has discovered that there are significant health benefits to commuters who replace short car trips with biking. The study concluded that if Midwesterners ran half of their short distance errands by bike rather than car, 1100 deaths

GAO: When it comes to highways, all states now receive more funds than they contribute

A new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) confirms that between 2005 and 2009, every state received more Federal-Aid Highway Program dollars than it contributed through the gas tax and other fees. This is a change from the past when the country could be divided into “donor”

Rahm Emanuel orders Chicago employees to use public transit

In an effort to crack down on the city’s generous travel reimbursement policy, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel introduced a measure that forces city employees to use public transit for work-related travel. Under the new program, employees who need to travel for meetings or assignments must use

Britain to raise motorway speed limit to 80mph

Britain plans to raise the speed limit on the country’s motorway system from 70mph to 80mph. The government expects the move to increase economic efficiency and commuter satisfaction through the reduction of journey times. Studies have shown that up to 49% of all drivers routinely break the

“30/10″ Plan: The right track for transportation

According to Charles Chieppo of the Harvard Kennedy School, Los Angeles County appears eager to learn from mistakes made in transportation funding over the last twenty years — such as the Boston “Big Dig” highway project that has amassed $8.6 billion in debt and a $4.5 billion maintenance

Long distances and a lack of sidewalks don’t explain the small number of kids walking to school

While the federal Safe Routes to School program has spent hundreds of millions of dollars in communities throughout the U.S. on sidewalks, crossings, and education to improve safety and increase the number of children walking and bicycling to school, the program appears to be solving only part of

Neither roads nor public transit will help?

In the October 2011 issue of the American Economic Review, authors Gilles Duranton and Matthew A. Turner review traffic data from the years 1983 to 2003. Their article, “The Fundamental Law of Road Congestion: Evidence from US Cities,” finds that, for the time period reviewed, congestion

Golden ring or vicious circle?

The Washington Beltway had a short life before filling up, as noted in the Washington Post: “But within two months, the Beltway had nearly exceeded the daily number of vehicles that planners had projected for years in the future. Cheers turned to grumbles, then to anger. In late 1965, the

Can congestion create kilowatts? Good vibrations from California

California Assemblyman Mike Gatto recently introduced a bill that would require the California Energy Commission to explore the possibility of generating electricity from the rumble of traffic on highways in the state. Piezoelectric technology, which converts vibrations into energy, is currently

IBM Global Commuter Pain Survey: Congestion down, complaints up

The fourth annual “Global Commuter Pain” survey report released by IBM has revealed that although global traffic congestion is lower in 2011, driver complaints have increased in the same time period. Mexico City was rated the “most painful” city for commuters while Montreal, London and

FHWA planning and environment linkages training webinar

The Planning and Environment Linkages (PEL) Program, a joint effort of FHWA’s Office of Planning and Office of Project Development and Environmental Review, is offering a training webcast titled “PEL 101: The Tools for Adopting and Implementing a PEL Approach,” at 2:00pm (Eastern) on

Reinventing the urban interstate

TCRP has released a report entitled Reinventing the Urban Interstate: A New Paradigm for Multimodal Corridors. The authors present a new design framework in which multimodal corridors can take one of three forms: Transit oriented multimodal corridors – designed to give transit a performance

Funding infrastructure repairs: Pennsylvania considers its options

Budget constraints and a bleak economic forecast are forcing Governor Tom Corbett of Pennsylvania to consider new ways to fund improvements to the state’s transportation infrastructure. The Governor’s advisory commission estimates that $2.7 billion is needed to bring the system to a state of

As gas tax yields less revenue, renewed focus is placed on a mileage tax

Higher fuel efficiency standards and a weak economy have made the motor-fuel tax—the principal fundraiser for road costs in the US for 80 years—increasingly less viable. As better mileage becomes the norm in the American car industry, consumers will use less fuel, thus decreasing government

Alaska “bridge to nowhere,” still on the table

Despite the hammering that it took in the 2008 election campaigns, the “bridge to nowhere” is still on the table, according to a recent Washington Post article. The bridge would connect Anchorage to a nearby peninsula, with a price tag estimated at $4 billion by one financial analyst, and a