Thursday, October 30, 2008

Public transit - more bang for the buck

Pointing out that every $1 communities invest in public transportation generates approximately $6 in economic returns, Scott said, "I urge Congress to move forward with an economic stimulus package that recognizes the value of investing in our nation's public transportation infrastructure. These projects will create new economic activity and put thousands of people to work." APTA/Harvard

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Free transport idea is spreading

Free public transit/transport is here now and it works. It addresses global warming. It lubricates the wheels of commerce. It improves the quality of life.

This year has seen major new additions to free public transport: Bangkok, Thailand - Changning China - Bermuda. See our list.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Bermuda - Buses to be fare-free

In June, Works Minister Derrick Burgess said free bus and ferry rides could be in place by the autumn.

Earlier this year children were granted free public transport.

Yesterday Premier and Transport Minister Ewart Brown's spokesman said the Ministry would create a timetable for free transport for adults "after officials have fully weighed the impact and benefits of the student phase".

The spokesman added: "We are happy to report free public transport for students has received overwhelmingly positive feedback from the public." RoyalGazette

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Buses Were First Step to Ending Streetcar System

GM first replaced trolleys with free-roaming buses, eliminating the need for tracks embedded in the street and clearing the way for cars. As dramatized in a 1996 PBS docudrama, Taken for a Ride, Alfred P. Sloan, GM’s president at the time, said, “We’ve got 90 percent of the market out there that we can…turn into automobile users. If we can eliminate the rail alternatives, we will create a new market for our cars.” And they did just that, with the help of GM subsidiaries Yellow Coach and Greyhound Bus. Sloan predicted that the jolting rides of buses would soon lead people to not want them and to buy GM’s cars instead.
from The Conservation Report quoting from Larry West at and The Straight Dope.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Amman, Jordan - discovering public transportation

photo link

15 October 2008 AMMAN - A revamped and modern public transportation system is integral to the Greater Amman Municipality's (GAM)Greater Amman Municipality's (GAM) Master Plan, Amman Mayor Omar Maani said on Tuesday.

...Maani stressed that one of the greatest challenges aside from upgrading public transport is encouraging the public to take advantage of the services...zawya

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

U.S. House candidate for free public transportation

Free public ground transportation. Suppose we taxed ourselves and picked up the fares for all mass transit, freight and people, traveling on the ground. Suppose we set standards for efficiency and environmental impact, standards that today’s trains and buses could meet, but standards that would become more stringent from year to year. Free trips anywhere in the USA for anybody riding or shipping by qualified conveyance.

Instead of upping subway fares, New York City would scrap them altogether. Goodbye, turnstiles. Good-bye, fare machines. Get on and go. Cars would stay in the driveway. Trucks would disappear from the roads, at least for long hauls. At half-a-buck a mile by car, people would get on board the trains and buses in millions. The skies would clear, of airplanes and of pollutants. Commerce would benefit. In fact, new kinds of commerce would arise just because of the increase in social travel, as opposed to isolation motoring and the attendant road rage we enjoy now. The pressures of social disequilibrium–resulting from such forces as immigration, natural disaster, unemployment–would be reduced, as displaced people were empowered to go where the work is, ride with the rest of us, and go back home when it pleased them to do so. Holders of airline, fuel and automotive assets would suffer. Tough. Too expensive, you say? What’s expensive is each one of us pushing a ton of steel around to get from place to place. Fournier for Congress

Monday, October 13, 2008

Private automobile dragging down the U.S.

U.S. financial system problems are a distraction from the real economy.

Billions of U.S. dollars are being borrowed and printed to save the wealthy from themselves.

While this story dominates the news. The autosprawl system continues to waste energy and public funds at an alarming rate.

The U.S. is facing a decision: continue subsidizing the auto and sprawl, or invest in public transportation.

For an example, read this on

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Free Transit - not a new idea

...Creation of a good system of free public transportation would entice droves of people -- many of whom now believe that buses are only for people too poor to afford their own car -- to shun the exorbitant cost of owning an automobile in favor of a free, enjoyable socially desirable ride to work or play. Who would want to pay for a car, with all it attendant expenses, if he could ride free?...

....Until the world wakes up and actually creates this "Utopian" transportation system, I will continue to watch log-jammed cars on highways that look like parking lots and think to myself: These hapless bottlenecked people...

William F. Torpey -1992

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Center for Transportation Excellence - new blog

The Center for Transportation Excellence is a non-partisan policy research center created to serve the needs of communities and transportation organizations nationwide. CFTE is committed to two main objectives: responding to transit’s critics and equipping local leaders with the information they need to be successful with their public transportation initiatives and ballot measures. Click here

Thursday, October 9, 2008

St. Louis, MO - Yes on Proposition M

The Post Dispatch editorial continued: “Simply put, the outcome of the sales tax vote will influence whether St. Louis remains competitive among metropolitan regions that are trying to attract top talent, top jobs and other economic opportunities.”According to the writers, “Dynamic public transportation — systems that are smart, efficient and convenient — is a key indicator of a community's confidence and vibrancy.” Read more...

Friday, October 3, 2008

Portland, OR - Another voice for free transit

City Commissioner Randy Leonard said he would support a tax in the Portland region to provide free public transportation for all, saying "I don't think it would cost homeowners much money." NakedEnergy

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Manchester, UK - Campaign for Free Public Transport

...Roy Wilkes of Respect opened the meeting by declaring that this is a campaign whose time has come. Climate change is a serious threat to the future of humanity and our response to it must include moving beyond the domination of the private automobile. In a recent survey, 72% of the population said they would only abandon their cars if public transport was free. The campaign was also needed in order to assert the principle that public transport should become a genuine public service rather than a source of private profit. Hasselt, a small town in Belgium, shows that zero fare transport is both possible and transformative. ... read more