Monday, December 10, 2012

Ugly parking garage crowds Christian charity

Is this really what we want as our architectural legacy? Millions spent on an ugly parking garage while a church from a different century struggles to help the poor and homeless? We can do better. Let's make the buses fare-free.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Things that go away with #freetransit - collision costs

Street blocked, two police cars, police personnel, and hours of paperwork, for a minor fender-bender. These are some of the costs that would be dramatically reduced if we made the buses and subways fare-free.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Autosprawl in crisis. I-95 needs 22 billion dollars

Regional planning agency: Infrastructure needs more funding - ""Choices need to be made. Frankly, there will never be enough money to do everything everybody would like to see done. It's time to take a realistic look at where we're headed.""

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Sunday, September 23, 2012

1,000 Protesters Hit Streets of Philly to Express Shale Gas Outrage « EcoWatch: Uniting the Voice of the Grassroots Environmental Movement

1,000 Protesters Hit Streets of Philly to Express Shale Gas Outrage « EcoWatch: Uniting the Voice of the Grassroots Environmental Movement: "More than 1,000 people from Pennsylvania and the shale regions of neighboring New York, Ohio, West Virginia and beyond, along with downstreamers from Maryland and Delaware, joined together to protest the Marcellus Shale Coalition’s industry convention in downtown Philadelphia on Sept. 20, making a unified statement to “Stop Fracking Now.”"

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Saturday, September 15, 2012

All over the U.S. street car rails are waiting under the asphalt

Let's make the buses fare-free. Then when the critical mass of the auto is broken in the city, the auto costs will be seen as the burden that they are, and we can gradually go back to streetcars.

Polls consistently show that people want more public transit

Survey: Americans want more public transit - but not higher taxes to fund it - The support was even higher in the Philadelphia suburbs: Pollsters found Bucks and Montgomery County respondents favored more local spending on transit by a ratio of 82 percent to 13 percent.
...Respondents there were split 49-48 on a five-cent-a-gallon gas-tax hike. They also supported a one-half-cent increase in the sales tax for transportation improvements, by a ratio of 55 percent to 41 percent.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Hidden tax! Hidden tax!

Where are the right wing nut jobs when it is time to complain about hidden taxes that subsidize private profit? The city spends over 190 million dollars a year managing parking. Parking management is necessary because there are too many cars. This creates parking hell, which then must managed through taxes--an externality of the industries that profit from the auto system--the oil industry, the auto industry, the coal industry, and the sprawl industry, to name a few. This money is collected by way of tickets, mostly. Parking tickets are a tax on delivery companies and messengers. These taxes hurt business!
 tax collection
expensive equipment to manage parking

Here is an idea. Take the 190 million and make public transit fare-free. Then the delivery companies and small businesses can have some room to work.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Imagine there's no cars... wonder if you can

Street resurfacing. If there were no cars, every other street could be a park. A lot of money would be saved.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

SEPTA | Sustainability | Farm-to-SEPTA Enters its Second Season

SEPTA | Sustainability | Farm-to-SEPTA Enters its Second Season: "When SEPTA included a commitment to access to local food via transit as a goal under its Sustainability Program Plan, it didn't realize how much momentum and new partnerships the goal would create both within the organization and in the communities it serves. To quote James Beard: "Food is our common ground, a universal experience." This has most certainly been the case as SEPTA moves into its second season of its Farm-to-SEPTA initiative.
The initiative includes two programs:
1) An employer-hosted CSA program, and
2) Farmers markets at SEPTA stations."

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Thursday, August 16, 2012

Not enough water for fracking

The Drought of 2012 Teaches Us About the Value of Water: "On June 28, the Susquehanna River Basin Commission suspended 37 separately approved water withdrawals for fracking due to localized streamflow levels dropping throughout the Susquehanna Basin in Pennsylvania and New York."

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Saturday, August 11, 2012

Verizon workers say "WTF?" "Where's the fairness" #1u #ows

Workers Stand for America Rally | District 2-13 | Communications Workers of America: "Event begins Aug 11, 2012

Location: Eakins Oval on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, PA

Rally begins at 11:00 AM at Eakins Oval.

The program will include speakers and musical entertainment.

Let's send a message that we need an America that works for everyone!

For more information, please click on the link below (PDF):"

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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

How do oil trolls keep getting elected: propaganda, and now, vote suppression.

Protest rally sets stage for Pa. voter ID hearing - CBS News: "HARRISBURG, Pa. — Hundreds of demonstrators descended on Pennsylvania's Capitol to protest a tough new voter ID law, launching a daylong political drama that set the stage for a state court hearing on a lawsuit seeking to prevent the law from taking effect this year."

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Free public transit is the best path to a green city

If free transit were introduced smoothly, it would be a big success. The money lost in lost fares would be re-gained immediately by elimination of the costs of collecting fares, and by the lowering of the unit cost of each rider.

More buses would be needed. But the city spends $180 million a year now just managing parking. And just imagine how much more shoppers would be around on foot. Delivery trucks could get in and out quicker with fewer cars blocking them.

Here is how to implement. Reduce the SEPTA Transpass price by one dollar every month. Everyone would know what is coming and when.

Free transit works. Click here to see who has it now.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Gas & Oil Party destroying #publictransit

Why SEPTA is Heading for a Crash | Philadelphia City Paper | 06/21/2012: "Last year, SEPTA’s subways, trolleys, commuter rails and buses supplied nearly 334 million rides — its highest ridership in 22 years.

However, the nation’s sixth-largest transit system is not contemplating expanding services to meet the growing demand. Instead, Republican hostility in Washington and Harrisburg is pushing SEPTA and other public-transit agencies nationwide to the brink of fiscal — and physical — ruin."

Saturday, June 23, 2012

FTA - News Releases - U.S. Department of Transportation Announces $10 Million TIGER Grant for New Rail Transportation Center in Delaware

FTA - News Releases - U.S. Department of Transportation Announces $10 Million TIGER Grant for New Rail Transportation Center in Delaware: "NEWARK, Del. – The U.S. Department of Transportation today announced a $10 million grant to build a new regional rail transportation center on the proposed University of Delaware Science and Technology campus. The project is one of 47 projects in 34 states and the District of Columbia selected to receive funding under the U.S. Department of Transportation’s highly competitive $500 million TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) 2012 program."

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Monday, June 11, 2012

Young People Are Driving Less—And Not Just Because They're Broke - News - GOOD

Young People Are Driving Less—And Not Just Because They're Broke - News - GOOD: "As a result of decades of car-oriented land use policy, private automobiles are a necessity for many Americans. Even most urban areas of the Sunbelt—Atlanta, Dallas, Phoenix, Los Angeles—are barely traversable by foot, bike or train. Despite this reality, Americans seem to be driving less and returning to cities with a diversity of transit options. (I’ve chosen Philadelphia: We still have trolleys!) Young people, especially, are waiting longer to buy cars, and we’re driving less once we get them. Are norms are changing, or is it just the tough economy? Business Insider posits a strong link between this data and the recession: As unemployment goes up, Americans drive less—because many of them suddenly don’t have work to drive to, or because they simply can’t afford to maintain a car."

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Sunday, June 3, 2012

Walkshed Philadelphia | Personal and Precise Walkability Mapping

Walkshed Philadelphia | Personal and Precise Walkability Mapping: "Walkability means different things to different people. Empty nesters may enjoy being near a wide variety of restaurants and theaters. Runners and families might prefer easy access to parks and playgrounds. Young professionals and students may like the nightlife in certain neighborhoods. All of these people love and value walkability, but they all have different preferences that shape it.

Using Azavea’s DecisionTree calculation engine, Walkshed is able to dynamically account for each person’s preferences "

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Wealthy are free-riders

A sorry story of transit and taxes: State legislators support the wealthy over the many who need mass transit - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: "Another problem is that our entire tax system is set up to reward people who least need it, even as the rest of us see a steady decline in our standard of living and in the public services we have a right to expect. Transit is only one example; education is another.

A study by the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy showed that in Pennsylvania if your family income was between $35,000 and $56,000 in 2007 (that is, if your income put you in the middle 20 percent), you typically paid over 9 percent of your income in state and local taxes. But if you were in the top 1 percent -- with a household income in 2007 of more than $428,000 -- you typically paid less than 4 percent of your income in state and local taxes after federal offsets."

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Transit ridership rises, thanks to young commuters and high gas prices

Transit ridership rises, thanks to young commuters and high gas prices: "Nationwide last year, buses, subways, and trains had their second-highest ridership since 1957 - behind only 2008, when the price of gas topped $4 a gallon. Locally, SEPTA, NJ Transit, and PATCO all report increased ridership."

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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The more you use #publictransit, the more you get to like it

Car Lovers Like Mass Transit More Than They Think - Commute - The Atlantic Cities: "Among the study's finer details, it's interesting to note that rider ratings on every criteria rose over the course of the month. So not only did habitual drivers enjoy their transit commute more than they thought they would, but their enjoyment went up the more they rode. The trial even seemed to have a lasting impact on drivers: when asked to rate their feelings on transit once more, two weeks after the test's conclusion, they remained as satisfied as they'd been by the end of the month."

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

New Study: Millennials Prefer Car “Access Over Ownership” | TheCityFix

New Study: Millennials Prefer Car “Access Over Ownership” | TheCityFix: "Here are some key findings from the study:

  • 55 percent have actively made an effort to drive less, compared to 45 percent in the same 2010 study
  • 78 percent say owning a car is difficult due to high costs of gas and maintenance
  • 53 percent  would participate in a car-sharing service, like Zipcar – mobility and convenience is still important
  • Millennials are the most likely age group to participate in the “sharing economy” (67 percent would participate in media sharing and 49 percent in home/vacation sharing)
  • 40 percent  say they would participate to save more money for retirement or buying a home"

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Friday, March 16, 2012

People want public #transit, but frackers run the PA government

Rabbit Transit ridership rises with gas prices, hiring - York Dispatch: "Whatever the reason, ridership continues to increase this year, Farr said. For January, Rabbit Transit provided 129,380 fixed-route rides and 7,728 express, or commuter, rides. In January 2011, the bus service provided 111,204 route and 5,931 express rides.
For the month of February, 133,956 route and 7,654 express trips were provided this year compared to 118,596 fixed and 5,962 express rides in 2011.
Ride requests continue to grow as Rabbit Transit is getting calls and emails from people interested in more rides going east and west on Route 30 and to Harrisburg, Farr said.
Funding: However, with the state transportation funding in crisis, Rabbit Transit cannot get the additional money needed to expand services, Farr said. There is no state funding available to fix local buses or purchase new buses for additional runs, he added.
"It's both the best of times and the worst of times for us," he said, referring to Rabbit Transit's ridership increases amid its financial challenges."

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Thursday, March 8, 2012

Pittsburghers fight #transit cuts

Anything but the car: To the PAT Board, 2012-02-29: "As every properly informed person in the room knows, PAT didn’t cause this problem, state government did, through its persistent refusal to accept that public transportation does require tax subsidy to run properly. As every properly informed politician knows, spending money on public transit actually earns money for the state in allowing the wheels of commerce to turn efficiently in the denser urban areas that generate most of the state’s revenues. But the misinformed and willfully ignorant are in power at the moment, so here we are. "

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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

You could save $973 per month

Transit Savings Report: "The top 20 cities with the highest transit ridership are ranked in order of their transit savings based on the purchase of a monthly public transit pass and factoring in local gas prices for February, 2012 and the local monthly unreserved parking rate.*

City Monthly Savings Annual Savings
1 New York $1,216 $14,587
2 Boston $1,125 $13,503
3 San Francisco $1,099 $13,193
4 Seattle $992 $11,899
5 Philadelphia $973 $11,681"

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Friday, February 17, 2012

Ready for a Mad Max world of potholes and chaos?

Corbett's Pa. budget ignores roads and bridges - "Is transportation funding too complex? Too costly? Is our transportation crisis lessening? No. We need at least $2 billion in new funding each year, according to the Transportation Funding Advisory Commission, which Gov. Corbett created last year. Did you notice that Gov. Corbett, in his budget message, skipped over a nearly 9 percent reduction, from $6.43 billion to $5.86 billion, in Transportation Department funding? If Harrisburg follows the $5.86 billion path, we will fall further and further behind in attacking the transportation crisis."

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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

PA governor doing the dirty work of frackers and oil-industry

How is Pennsylvania supposed to attract investment if public transit has collapsed and our deteriorating roads are clogged with commuters forced to drive to work?

Read more:

Friday, January 27, 2012

Congress Will PAY YOU to Avoid Public Transit in 201 | InvestorPlace

Congress Will PAY YOU to Avoid Public Transit in 201 | InvestorPlace: "That’s right. You get twice as much of a write-off to drive to work instead of taking the bus. Read the details at the University of South Florida’s National Center for Transit Research.

You may pass go. Advance your token to free parking. Thanks for playing."

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Sunday, January 15, 2012

Do you assume your highway will not collapse? Stop assuming.

Gov. Corbett to roll out transportation plan by Feb. 7: "The proposal is likely to fall short of the recommendations of the governor's Transportation Funding Advisory Commission, which presented a plan in August to raise up to $2.5 billion in new annual revenue for roads, bridges and public transit."

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