Breakfast links: Half or double?
Transit benefit will shrink by half: The federal commuter tax benefit will be cut in half January 1 even as parking perks increase. Riders nationwide are campaigning to preserve the higher limits. (Patch, Examiner, Forbes) ... Contact your representatives!
DC taxi rate may double: Soon after Arlington raised taxi rates, the DC Taxi Commission may do the same. Per-mile charges could almost double, but all the other fees for extra passengers, luggage and more would go away. (Examiner)
Watergate Safeway, 1966-2011: The store closes this week, leaving elderly residents without accessible groceries and college students without affordable groceries. Are Whole Foods and Trader Joe's the only urban model grocery? (Post, GW Hatchet)
Mall parking 60% empty: The weekend before Black Friday, typically a busy shopping time, shopping mall parking lots were only 40% full. That's a lot of land devoted to being 60% empty or more almost all the time. (Getting from here to there, Michael P.)
Replace fringe malls with downtown growth: The economics show that fringe suburbs won't be as popular as they used to be. Regions should encourage downtown growth, connect employment with transit, and stop paving farms. (NYT) ... Perhaps they could start by just allowing downtown development. (Yglesias)
Why's it hard to shop locally?: Despite "Small Business Saturday," it's not easy to shop in neighborhood commercial areas. Why? There are many such corridors with few retail stores, while there's greater demand for restaurants in neighborhoods. (RPUS)
Mickey Mouse is out: Disney backed out of plans for a 500-room hotel and casino at National Harbor. Only 1/3 of the planned development has happened, largely due to the economy. Will the county now focus more on developing its Metro sites? (Post)
Slower speeds safer, but practical?: 15-mph speeds on residential streets save lives in when crashes happen, but are hard on automatic transmissions. How about redesigning streets with lower design speeds? (TheWashCycle)
And...: A man is dead after a weekend shooting outside Dupont's Heritage India. Should ABRA be more proactive about places with known problems? (Post, Shaw Deserves Better) ... Governor O'Malley plans an ambitious agenda including marriage equality and gas tax hikes. (Post) ... Arlington sees some parking lot rage. (ARLnow)Have a tip for the links? Submit it here.
- The Dutch government is trolling DC over marijuana, bike lanes, and streetcars
- 2.5 minutes of extra walking is not nothing
- How two families dealt with Metro problems and other transportation options in the snow
- I can take the bus from my neighborhood to just about anywhere in DC
- Cities worldwide are building beautiful, landmark pedestrian and bicycle bridges. Could Georgetown be next?
- DC like Amsterdam? We can only hope
- Sidewalk snow shoveling hall of shame: "DC government is the worst offender" (and Arlington too)