In a legislative session marked by chaotic, partisan showmanship, transit has emerged as a strong bipartisan issue. A grand coalition of urban and rural politicians from both parties have put regional transit funding in Atlanta on the precipice of reality. Enter Cobb County, the obstinate killer of transit momentum.
Weekly Links: Westerners Love Their Public Land, An App to Track Tsunamis, and Ride-Sharing is Increasing Traffic Congestion
This week, fixing the misleading election result maps, traffic congestion increases as people choose Uber and Lyft over transit and walking, only 26% of residents in Mountain West states support increased mining on public land, and a potential app to detect and monitor tsunamis.
Dedicated pay-to-use lanes do alleviate traffic, but the benefits are significantly skewed towards the wealthy. We continue to spend billions of taxpayer dollars on HOT lanes while endlessly debating the funding of an actual necessity: transit.
Buckhead has sometimes been referred to as the Jewel of Atlanta, though this title is severely threatened by its increasingly underwhelming user experience. Its lack of vibrancy, identity, and walkability make the neighborhood a shining example of poor urban design and undercut its ability to attract residents and businesses. In its attempt to remain relevant, Buckhead should look to Miami’s Brickell neighborhood, Virginia’s Tyson’s Corner, and Atlanta’s Midtown neighborhood.
Pro-helmet and anti-helmet advocates both make compelling arguments in the quest to make cycling safer. While better urban design principles would fundamentally solve the safety problem, courts may find that cyclists have a duty to wear a helmet.
Cities are in love with small coffee shops, artisan burger shops, and boutique clothing stores. The only thing they like more is taking people’s property and converting it to those types of businesses. This is, of course, a bit of hyperbole, though many would make that statement with much more sincerity. A bill passed by the Georgia Legislature would allow local governments to condemn blighted property and sell it to developers. It’s not a bad idea.
Sewer and water drainage systems, the unsung heroes of our communities, are tasked with managing stormwater runoff; yet cities and counties often struggle to convince citizens that such systems are worth the investment. Several Georgia Senators had a grand plan to undermine the system by cutting fees for larger developers at the expense of the average homeowner.
Chattanooga is a beautiful city tucked in the mountains of Southeastern Tennessee. Choosing it to be the first city to connect to Atlanta via High-Speed Rail would be a disastrous plan.
While building large infrastructure projects is needed, the enforcement of basic traffic laws is an essential, and often overlooked, element of good transportation networks.
We’ll likely see an increase in the number of poorer suburban communities. While Cobb and North Fulton will still have enclaves of wealthier residents, they will increasingly become the destination of lower-income individuals when they are priced out of the walkable Atlanta area. While quality-of-life is an issue even for wealthier residents in auto-centric communities, it is much more of a problem for their poorer residents. Try getting to the grocery store or your job when you don’t have a car and your community doesn’t support sidewalks or alternative transportation. While sitting in traffic on the way to work is stressful, having no transportation options to safely get to that place of work is arguably more stressful.