Breakfast links: From Z to A
Avis buys Zipcar: Car rental company Avis has reached a deal to purchase Zipcar for $500 million. Besides getting better deals on cars, Avis can use its fleet to increase capacity on weekends, when demand is highest. (NYT, Forbes)
Or will Avis kill Zipcar?: Might an Avis-owned Zipcar be less of an advocate for the walkable urban lifestyle? Or perhaps more? Will it gradually change it into the old car rental model to cut costs as it loses innovative executives? (Slate, Post)
Metro announces inauguration service: Metro will open early, close late, run rush hour service, and charge rush fares for most of Inauguration Day. The Smithsonian, Archives, and Mt. Vernon Square stops will also be closed. (Post)
Pricey passes not a hit, not surprisingly: Many fewer Metro riders are buying passes after WMATA raised the prices. Michael Perkins is not surprised, since he said they wouldn't succeed as implemented. (Examiner)
Generous camera illegal?: A police officer is insisting 14,000 tickets are invalid from a speed camera because it was set at a higher speed limit than the posted one. (Post)
Amtrak wants lighter trains: Amtrak is asking the Federal Railroad Administration to change rules that force US trains to be much heavier than those in Europe. FRA thinks that enhances safety, but many disagree. (Bloomberg, Forbes)
Transportation tops MD agenda: Maryland's General Assembly will attempt to tackle several transportation issues in its upcoming session, perhaps including a higher gas tax to help fund the Purple Line and other projects. (Gazette)
What DC Council travel costs taxpayers: Vincent Orange spent $1,750 of public funds for a trip to LA; Jim Graham $1,500. Jack Evans and Yvette Alexander spent over $400 a night for rooms in Las Vegas, while Michael Brown was far more thrifty. There seems to be little pattern to what travel expenses are allowed. (City Paper)
New oversight: Budget autonomy supporter Darrell Issa is moving oversight of DC from a subcommittee to the full House Oversight and Government Reform committee, which he chairs. Eleanor Holmes Norton likes the change. (City Paper)
And...: Michael Brown is a Democrat again and running for council again. (WAMU) ... The Washington Times will likely have less local coverage. (DCist) ... The Chesapeake Bay is a little healthier. (AP) ... Ever wonder what happened to SmartBike? (WashCycle)Have a tip for the links? Submit it here.
- Are public spaces really public when not everybody can use them?
- Cell service in tunnels, junking old rail cars, getting finances in order. Here's what's in Metro's Back2Good plan.
- What happens when people without cars move to places built for driving?
- Metro now has an official plan for getting better in 2017. It's called Back2Good.
- If racial inequities didn't exist, DC would look like this...
- WMATA recommended express bus service along 14th Street NW four years ago. Is it time to make it happen?
- The DC reps on the WMATA board might veto late-night closures