Category Archives: Public Transportation

An Apartment Search from Walk Score

On Monday, Walk Score unveiled its Apartment Search, which allows you to search for apartments by commute time. The app lets you select driving, public transit, walking, or biking as your preferred mode of transportation. Apartment listings from Craigslist are automatically sorted by estimated commute time and also can be filtered by Walk Score, price, and size.

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Filed under Bike-Ped, Public Transportation

Amsterdam’s Amphibious Tour Bus

Yes, you have undoubtedly seen tour buses rolling through various cities. You have seen boats floating down waterways. But have you seen an amphibious tour bus? In Amsterdam, the Floating Dutchman began service last month. The New York Times reports that the amphibious tour bus travels through the city center on highways before entering the water near the Nemo Science Center. Do you think a similar tour bus would be successful in the greater Des Moines metropolitan area?

The Floating Dutchman, an amphibious tour bus, in one of Amsterdam's canals.

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Filed under Public Transportation

DART Hosts Public Meetings This Week

DART is releasing its recommendations for a completely redesigned transit system this month and is in the midst of hosting a series of meetings to allow the public to review the recommendations and to provide feedback. There are numerous meetings scheduled around the metro area this week; please see the schedule below for the remaining meetings. For more information, please visit www.ridedart.com/dart-forward-2035.cfm.

TUESDAY, JULY 19

  • 3 p.m. – 5 p.m., Des Moines Central Library, 1000 Grand Avenue, Des Moines
  • 6 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., Des Moines South Side Library, 1111 Porter Avenue, Des Moines

WEDNESDAY, JULY 20

  • 5 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Northside Senior Center, Park Fair Mall, 100 East Euclid Avenue, Suite 107, Des Moines
  • 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m., Merle Hay Mall, 3850 Merle Hay Road, Northside Meeting Room, Des Moines

THURSDAY, JULY 21

  • 11:30 p.m. – 1 p.m., Des Moines Central Library, 1000 Grand Avenue, Des Moines
  • 5 p.m. – 6 :30 p.m., West Des Moines Community Center, South Dining Room, 217 5th Street, West Des Moines
  • 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m., Urbandale Public Library, 3520 86th Street, Urbandale

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Filed under Public Transportation

A Report Card on Transportation Spending

On Wednesday, the Pew Center on the States and the Rockefeller Center released a new report, Measuring Transportation Investments: The Road to Results. The report examines how states account for billions of dollars annually spent on transportation and finds that most are not tracking how their investments are performing in six key areas. Iowa is one of eighteen states, along with Washington, D.C., that has a mixed report card.

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Filed under Bike-Ped, Public Transportation, Rail, Street & Highway

America’s Railroads Are Still A Century Behind

According to Fast Company, it took ten days and $40 – the equivalent of $800 today – to travel from New York to San Francisco on the Transcontinental Express in the 1800s. Rail service has not changed much since then, the company asserts. However, the Obama administration is pushing to change that with a $53 billion proposal to bring high speed rail to the masses.

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Filed under Public Transportation, Rail

Get Paid to Move Near Work?

Washington, D.C.’s Office of Planning is launching a pilot program called Live Near Your Work that will match up to $6,000 in incentives that businesses offer to employees to move near work or public transit. The homes must be within two miles of work, within half a mile of a Metro station, or within a quarter mile of a “high-quality” bus corridor. The initial phase of the project includes a total of $200,000 to distribute. Officials hope that the program will reduce traffic and pollution, spur urban revitalization, and improve quality of life for participants.

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Filed under Environment, Public Transportation

Midwest Bullet Train Network Would Cost $83.6 Billion

A study from the Midwest High Speed Rail Association and the Siemens Corporation estimates that a Midwest network of bullet trains – those that could travel at speeds of 220 miles per hour and higher – would cost $83.6 billion. However, the study finds that the benefits would far exceed those from a less expensive system that would only reach speeds up to 150 miles per hour. The Chicago Tribune notes that all of the plans for a Midwest high-speed rail network envision Chicago as the hub, with corridors to Minneapolis/St. Paul, St. Louis, Cincinnati, and Detroit/Cleveland. Travel times would be three hours at most.

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Filed under Public Transportation, Rail