Breakfast links: Decongesting our politics and our roads
Barry back in the news: Arrested for stalking. Marion Barry is mostly irrelevant to Washingtonians' actual lives, but his constant appearances in the news just give ammunition to the gradually dying meme that DC government is crooked. (Washington City Paper)
We're still riding, still need Metro: Commuters still feel safe on Metro, and have continued riding it despite the crash. The spike in traffic recently shows how important Metro is to the region. The Gazette also picks up the theme that the Purple Line would have helped by creating an alternative after the crash. (Gazette, Cavan)
Bus locations copyright NextBus?: Manifest Density is trying to build apps combining GTFS and NextBus data, but the two datasets don't match up well at all. Worse yet, NextBus is at least claiming that it holds the copyright to the raw data on where each bus is located. Does this relate to one SF iPhone app developer's woes?
Chicago parked itself into a corner: Chicago may have raised its parking rates too high when it privatized its meters. Now, many blocks are under-utilized. Unfortunately, Chicago would have to pay money back to the private company. Performance parking isn't just about raising meter rates; it's about setting them at the right level. Chicago's deal tied the city's hands. (Chicago Sun-Times)
It's working for Philly: In Philadelphia, meanwhile, a recent rise in meter rates suddenly meant people could find spaces in Center City. Now that the rates are fostering the right amount of turnover (about 83% occupancy), the Parking Authority has decided not to raise it any further, and will lower the rates in some more outlying blocks which have become a little too empty. (Philadephia Inquirer, Michael P)
Paging Jim Graham: According to Charles Komanoff, each car driving into Manhattan each day "causes about $160 of negative externalities to everybody else." A congestion charge and taxi surcharge could fix this, speed traffic, and allow New York City to make all buses free, all the time, he argues. (Felix Salmon)
Paging Barbara Mikulski: Serious environmentalists know suburban sprawl is a problem. Unfortunately, many wealthy, liberal communities like Berkeley, California and neighboring areas of northern Oakland are still full of those "environmentalists" who believe saving the planet means keeping their downtown areas very low density. (East Bay Express via The Overhead Wire)
Just National?: The chairman of MWAA might have suggested changing the name of National Airport back to "National Airport." (DCist)Have a tip for the links? Submit it here.
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- For Arlington County Board: Erik Gutshall
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- Montgomery County will build bus rapid transit in four years
- For DC Council at large: Robert White