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Breakfast links: Time

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No nighttime Purple Line?: The University of Maryland has suggested that the Purple Line not stop on campus after 10 pm over fears of campus safety and security. This could pose a problem for students, who could possibly be up after 10 pm. (Patch)

Ike's family wants more time: Dwight Eisenhower's granddaughter wants more time to reach a consensus on the Frank Gehry design for the Eisenhower Memorial. She particularly objects to its large metal screens as "impractical and unnecessary." (DCist)

Still on the loose: A driver accused of hitting a cyclist in DC has not yet been tried or arrested even after a bench warrant was issued. The incident was caught on the cyclist's helmet camera. (Washington Times)

Unions against transit: Municipal unions in Virginia Beach are opposing a light rail referendum because they think transit competes against raises for workers. (RPUS)

Put a lid on it: One bike shop publication worries that the subsidized helmets CaBi will offer will hurt bike shop business. But with the inconvenience of a small buying window and limited selection, they probably aren't missing out much. (TBD, WashCycle)

New city will be empty: While some cities strive to become better for human residents one city in New Mexico is being built to have no people. The city will be a testing bed for various new technologies. (Fast Company)

LA gets its groove back: For too long the auto city has neglected its rail infrastructure, but Mayor Villaraigosa's push for more and better transit is starting to pay dividends. Angelenos are rediscovering the rail, and they like it. (SacBee)

And...: One infographic shows how long commutes are bad for us. (Cube Dweller Fitness, Bossi) ... A mixed use development near Nationals Park cold be coming soon. (JDLand) ... Kenyan McDuffie is sworn in as Ward 5's councilmember. (Post)

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Steven Yates grew up in Indiana before moving to DC in 2002 to attend college at American University. He currently lives in Southwest DC.  


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I went to GMU and certainly none of us stayed up past 10pm, and certainly none of us had classes that ran from 7-10pm so I can understand how people looking to cause trouble at UMD would be swayed to stay at home because they can't take the train, and who has ever heard of using a car to commit a crime? You're better off snatching someones purse and waiting at the station for 10 minutes for the next train rather than risk it by getting in a car or running away on foot.

Plus, everything I've seen in the past couple of years show that UMD students have more to fear from other students or the Prince George's county police.

by X on May 31, 2012 8:48 am • linkreport

Jesus who are these idiots running UMD? I mean really, the tired old "omg criminals are going to ride transit here and rob us!" argument? Of course it's been repackaged post 9/11 as a "security risk."

Also, the campus is a secure area? You can't just walk onto it and walk around?

by MLD on May 31, 2012 8:52 am • linkreport

From the LA Article:

"A parents group recently foreshadowed a thumping battle by releasing a video envisioning a "mega-disaster" of huge student-consuming fireballs fueled by subterranean gases unleashed by Metro's tunnel-boring machines."


by J on May 31, 2012 9:08 am • linkreport


Be sure to put the 1812 Overture on in the background while watching.

Also more here:

by MLD on May 31, 2012 9:12 am • linkreport

Ah, glad to see that the Harvard of PG County hasn't changed its old ways completely. Still trying to pretend it can seal itself off from the rest of the world and sell itself as a bucolic land grant-style flagship state university.

Good thing, too, that there aren't hundreds of night staff (custodial, maintenance, security, etc.) working on campus that would likely be a top constituency for transit to campus.

Then again, if this were actually implemented, it sounds like exactly the sort of thing that students and staff would be able to successfully lobby to get overturned. Once the service is active, I expect demand to make it a fait accompli.

by Dizzy on May 31, 2012 9:15 am • linkreport

Running Purple line trains through campus, but not letting them stop, may be the dumbest idea related to the purple line yet. Later in the article is the suggestion that instead, they could have campus police checkpoints at the stops, which is almost as stupid.

I get that they claim to stop everybody who drives onto campus, though I've taken cabs through campus (when staying at that horrible conference center over at University College) after 10 without any issues--so I guess they just mean certain parts.

How do they deal now with people walking onto campus? Do they position campus police at all major pedestrian entrances to make it slightly harder? Do they commission studies to examine the enormous safety impacts of people walking around campus?

by Gray on May 31, 2012 9:24 am • linkreport

That and just because they check IDs after 10 doesn't mean that's effective. Has that had a measurable effect on crime on campus?

by X on May 31, 2012 9:27 am • linkreport


Back when the subway was being planned in the late 80's there was a high profile natural gas explosion right were they were planning the red line. Then as construction was ongoing another explosion collapsed part of the tunnel. Plus the Late 80's to mid 90's was a very active earthquake period in SoCal, so everyone was riled up. But the Red Line survived the Northridge earthquake so everyone fear slowly faded.

by RJ on May 31, 2012 9:38 am • linkreport

No nighttime Purple Line?

How can a university be led by such dumb people?

A driver accused of hitting a cyclist in DC has not yet been tried or arrested even after a bench warrant was issued.

I love that DC has not been able to serve the warrant, while the WaTimes author was able to call the dude.

by Jasper on May 31, 2012 9:54 am • linkreport

Its going to be years before the purple line is done - i'd say 2018 may be optimistic. I wouldnt worry too mucgh about UMd policies just yet.

by AWalkerInTheCity on May 31, 2012 9:57 am • linkreport

Yeah, as a recent-ish UMD alum I don't really buy it. I think the relative safety of on-campus compared to, say, the streets around the Metro stop, is more the tons of lighting everywhere, the dozens of blue light phones, the safety in numbers aspect, etc. The nighttime car checkpoints definitely help, but it also seems a lot easier to flee the scene of a crime in a car than on transit.

by prognostication on May 31, 2012 10:06 am • linkreport

Running Purple line trains through campus, but not letting them stop, may be the dumbest idea related to the purple line yet.

The dumbest idea related to the purple line is relying solely on passing a new gas tax (which will never happen) as the only option for coming up with the state's share of funding.

by Falls Church on May 31, 2012 10:27 am • linkreport

Re: Long Commutes Kill

The infographic seems heavily focused on car commutes. I wonder what the stats are for transit commutes. Several days a week, I have a 50+ min metro ride each way to work. While the bad posture thing probably still applies to metro rides, the stress factor is way less especially since I'm able to work for about 2/3 of the ride. OTOH, working on a laptop while on metro requires worse posture than driving.

by Falls Church on May 31, 2012 10:37 am • linkreport

@Falls Church, posture; when you (one) walks to get to/from the metro/around the station, you (one) use the primary muscles involved in holding your torso erect, your posture, as well as other muscles and joints, on average 19 mins a day longer than someone who drives instead. Its definitively better in the long term.

by Tina on May 31, 2012 10:49 am • linkreport

Fact: Criminals do not know how to drive, and can only take public transit.


by Cassidy on May 31, 2012 11:34 am • linkreport

@Cassidy--false. As the Washington Times pointed out, they can also ride CaBi.

by Dan Miller on May 31, 2012 11:51 am • linkreport

Pretty sure that banning bikes is UMD's next initiative.

by Cassidy on May 31, 2012 12:51 pm • linkreport

The no service after 10pm idea is just ridiculous!

Crime is not caused by public transportation. Whatever crime issues UMD campus has are caused by the socio-economic issues of the College Park area where the campus is located and the total lack of leadership on the part of the UMD administration.

The fact that UMD has been in that location for so long and done absolutely NOTHING to improve the surrounding area, just shows how poorly run the university is.

Take VCU in Richmond as an example. VCU worked hard to improve the conditions of the surrounding areas and the difference is absolutely night and day from the 90s to today. In fact, I'd venture to say that VCU leadership has helped the economy of the city of Richmond tremendously and improved the crime rate overall for the Fan district where it is located.

This was done with good planning, investment in new infrastructure, building close ties with the neighboring communities and working to keep the campus safe at night with good lighting (which UMD does not have--I teach night classes there and 90% of the campus is pitch dark), consistent and reliable police patrol (on foot or bike--not just car), and creating a "neighborhood safety watch" patrol as well.

None of UMD's current safety issues have anything to do with public transportation, nor will they be affected negatively by having a Purple Line running past 10pm.

If anything, having various Purple Line stations/stops will improve safety by creating more lighting, more centers were pedestrians can actually get help if needed (if the stations/stops are properly lit and have cameras and emergency alarm equipment), and will cause more pedestrians to congregate in areas they probably wouldn't otherwise, which will increase pedestrian flow at night and make it less of a desolate post-10pm area dominated by automobiles only.

by LuvDusty on May 31, 2012 12:55 pm • linkreport

Even if one accepts the (highly questionable) premise that running the Purple Line after 10pm will bring crime to UMD I suspect any possible increase in injury/death by crime will be more than made up for by a decrease in injury/death caused by car accidents if students have a convenient transit option for getting back to campus after a night of drinking.

by Jacob on May 31, 2012 5:20 pm • linkreport

@ Jacob

The better question is why are you going out drinking and do not have a designated driver or why not just take a cab?

All parties are responsible don't try to blame one for the others mistakes. Just because there is or isn't transit doesn't mean you have a right to be a jackass. If the students had a sense of morals they would not be putting other people in the possible of danger through their actions.

The convenient option of drinking is do so safely or don't do it at all.

by kk on Jun 1, 2012 4:04 pm • linkreport

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