USDOT urges nation to think beyond traffic

Last week, the USDOT announced Beyond Traffic—a framework for thinking about the nation’s transportation needs over the next 30 years. “As population concentrates around metropolitan areas around the country,” said Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx during an unveiling event at Google, “it has implications on how much money we need to invest but also what we’re paying for with the money.” Foxx has stressed repeatedly that this framework—released officially as a draft to encourage a national conversation—is about understanding and getting ahead of the challenges we face, rather than trying to recreate the past. Arriving roughly in conjunction with the administration’s transportation budget, this framework aims to move the discussion beyond a six-year horizon.

How car sharing and ride sharing can help transportation agencies

The primary focus of transportation agencies for many years has been to keep pace with ever-rising levels of traffic. New policy goals focused on health and environmental impacts in California, Massachusetts, and elsewhere, as well as nationwide trends in travel behavior have begun to change this focus. Now, the emergent sharing economy also appears to be playing some part in markets that currently are isolated but that could grow quickly.

Fitch urges policymakers to plan for changing travel demands

Fitch Rating—the third largest credit rating agency in the U.S.—acknowledged earlier this month that we may be entering a new era in travel demand, which will likely have a major impact on transportation infrastructure spending. In a recent commentary article, they point to record transit use and multi-family home construction as two key trends affecting this change.

Mexico City tackles congestion head-on

As recently as 2011, Mexico City ranked among the world’s worst for traffic congestion. But now, Mexico City’s improvements to their transportation system can serve as a model for other municipalities to learn from. The city shines as an international example of a rapidly growing city successfully lowering carbon emissions, reducing the severity of traffic jams, increasing public space, and improving overall quality of life.

Mexico City tackles congestion head-on

As recently as 2011, Mexico City ranked among the world’s worst for traffic congestion. But now, Mexico City’s improvements to their transportation system can serve as a model for other municipalities to learn from. The city shines as an international example of a rapidly growing city successfully lowering carbon emissions, reducing the severity of traffic jams, increasing public space, and improving overall quality of life.

Highway congestion highest on Friday afternoon

Car commuters in most large metro areas face the highest level of highway congestion on Friday afternoon, according to Inrix data provided to Governing magazine. However many metro areas have relatively minor changes in commuting times. And one quarter of commuters in metro areas with the highest Friday congestion times opt out of traffic by walking, biking, using transit, or working at home.