Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Downtown Boise streetcar project fails to get stimulus funds | News Updates | Idaho Statesman

The city's proposed Downtown streetcar project was not among the winners of a highly competitive federal stimulus grant for transportation projects. Boise had requested $40 million to help pay for a $60 million, 2.3-mile loop along Main and Idaho streets between 1st and 15th streets.

Full story... Downtown Boise streetcar project fails to get stimulus funds |Idaho Statesman

Friday, February 12, 2010

How America Can Own Its Transit Networks Again

From the "Next American City" Blog, a look at how the U.S. can own its transit network and make them economically viable Next American City » Buzz » How America Can Own Its Transit Networks Again.

High Speed Rails... China is making progress

President Obama is concerned, as are we, that the United States was falling behind Asia and Europe in high-speed rail construction and other clean energy industries. “Other countries aren’t waiting,” he said. “They want those jobs. China wants those jobs. Germany wants those jobs. They are going after them hard, making the investments required.”

According to a news report in today's NYT:

The Chinese bullet train, which has the world’s fastest average speed, connects Guangzhou, the southern coastal manufacturing center, to Wuhan, deep in the interior. In a little more than three hours, it travels 664 miles, comparable to the distance from Boston to southern Virginia. That is less time than Amtrak’s fastest train, the Acela, takes to go from Boston just to New York.

Even more impressive, the Guangzhou-to-Wuhan train is just one of 42 high-speed lines recently opened or set to open by 2012 in China. By comparison, the United States hopes to build its first high-speed rail line by 2014, an 84-mile route linking Tampa and Orlando, Fla.

Read full article here.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Heard about those "Starter" Mansions?

Timothy Egan writes about abandoned rows of suburban houses in California. What will happen to the stock of houses that nobody wants?

Egan writes:

Drive along foreclosure alley, through new planned communities that look like tile-roofed versions of a 21st century ghost town, and you see what happens when people gamble with houses instead of casino chips.

Dirty flags advertise rock-bottom discounts on empty starter mansions. On the ground, foreclosure signs are tagged with gang graffiti. Empty lots are untended, cratered with mud puddles from the winter storms that have hammered California’s San Joaquin Valley.

Nobody is home in the cities of the future.

Read the full article here.

Urban Growth in Salt Lake City

An interesting article on the plans for and controversy over a new development in downtown Salt Lake City, UT.

Santa Fe, NM: A success story of urban growth

Check out the link to a New York Times article on Santa Fe, New Mexico: The Art of Being Santa Fe.