Slides typically are not thought of as a mode of transportation. However, at the newly renovated railway station Overvecht in the Dutch city of Utrecht, a slide has been installed next to a stairway to allow travelers the opportunity to quickly reach the railway tracks. Officially called a ‘transfer accelerator,’ the slide has made the city more playful and has generated positive externalities in the disadvantaged area, according to Pop-Up City.
On Monday, the European Commission unveiled a “single European transport area aimed at enforcing a profound shift in transport patterns for passengers by 2050.” The plan includes ending cheap holiday flights to encourage a shift to rail, according to The Telegraph. The plan also seeks to cut climate change emissions to zero for the number of petrol and diesel-driven cars and lorries in the EU’s future cities. Some critics are skeptical of the plan, asserting that it will limit personal mobility or reduce the continent’s economic competitiveness.
In the face of rising oil prices, Spain is lowering its national speed limit, according to Reuters. Spanish officials also will reduce the cost of rail fares and raise the minimum percentage of biofuels blended into gasoline in an attempt to reduce the country’s dependence on oil.
China is proposing to construct a railway in Colombia to link the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. The Guardian reports that the railway would make it easier for China to export goods to the Americas. Officials assert that the line, if constructed, would rival the Panama canal.
Filed under Freight, Rail
As President Barack Obama pushes a high speed rail plan, US News offers a look at the ten best cities for public transportation. The rankings are based on a variety of factors, including ridership, safety, and public transportation investment. Which city ranked the best? Click on the link to find out!
On Tuesday, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden announced plans to inject $53 billion into passenger rail over the next six years. The plan includes the completion of new high-speed rail (HSR) networks as well as upgrades to existing routes. According to Reuters, Biden noted that, “This is about seizing the future… If we do not, you tell me how America is going to be able to lead the world in the 21st century.”
The Transport Politic reports that public transportation projects are springing up throughout the country, not just on the coasts. Most major metropolitan areas are preparing new rail or bus links. These investments demonstrate the public sector’s commitment to extending transit offerings.
Even as airport security measures continue to tighten, those on railways and the subway continue to lack; a USA Today study found gaping holes in these security systems, some of which may be difficult to overcome. The report found that about 15 million passengers board subway cars and trains unscreened each weekday. Officials note that the vast network of subways and railroads, coupled with the impracticality and screening of all passengers, are major barriers to improving security.
According to People’s Daily Online, one Chinese high speed rail (HSR) line carried 20.6 million passengers in 2010. The Wuhan-Guangzhou line – the world’s longest and fastest HSR line – averaged 56,000 riders per day. The line ran over 12 million miles without incident.