SSTI News: A framework to determine where congestion really matters

New resources highlighted below look at the issues of measuring congestion in heavily-visited neighborhoods in LA, and the changes in bike traffic after the installation of new infrastructure in St. Paul, MN. Photo: Sunset Triangle Plaza in Silver Lake, Los Angeles (LADOT/Jim Simmons)

A framework to determine where congestion really matters

Two truisms: 1) travelers dislike slow traffic, and 2) slow traffic often occurs in places people like to visit — cities with popular destinations. How can communities address congestion without destroying the very character that makes a place worth visiting? A new study of neighborhoods in Los Angeles helps address this question. More >>

House and Senate release bills on automated vehicles

Both the Senate and the House have produced draft bills that would regulate the testing, operation, and safety of automated vehicles (AVs), paving the way for as many as 100,000 AVs per manufacturer to be operating on U.S. streets and roads in just a few short years. The Senate bill would preempt states from passing stricter laws in nine specific areas outlined in the bill, and the House bill would prevent states or localities from passing any laws pertaining to AVs if they are determined to be an “unreasonable restriction”. More >>

Unable to remove expressway, New Orleans reclaims space underneath

In 2013, FHWA funded a revitalization study that outlined ways to remove parts of Interstate 10 in New Orleans and restore historic Claiborne Avenue. Though high costs have stalled these efforts, in the meantime the city has opted to reclaim space beneath the expressway in an attempt to reactivate nearby neighborhoods affected by the structure. More >>

SmarterRoads: Virginia’s public-private transportation data sharing strategy

The Virginia DOT has launched a public cloud-based data portal that contains a vast array of state transportation data. The SmarterRoads portal will be available to anyone who creates a free account. Information includes average daily traffic, crashes, signal data, vehicle miles traveled, and speed limits. More >>

BlaBlaCar now a transit option in Google Maps, but not within the U.S.

If you are looking at options for intercity travel on Google Maps, its transit tab will tell you which buses or trains you can use. And now BlaBlaCar, a long distance carpooling app, shows up as an option, but you won’t see it in the U.S., as the app is not yet available here. Why hasn’t intercity ridesharing caught on stateside? More >>

Measuring bike traffic increases after infrastructure installation

A recent report from the City of St. Paul, MN noted a jump in observed bicycle use after the installation of bike lanes. This observation suggests that upgrading or adding bicycle infrastructure has a positive impact on attracting new riders. Other cities have conducted similar studies that show that infrastructure investments can change both the safety of the corridor and willingness to use the street for active transportation. More >>

Watch the recording: Advancements in measuring bicycle and pedestrian accessibility

If you missed our popular webinar last week, you can now watch the online recording in which we discuss two techniques that measure how easy it is to reach destinations by bicycle. PeopleForBikes is rating cities by the extent of their low-stress bike network, and SSTI has been working on multimodal accessibility measures that allow planners and transportation professionals to evaluate which particular projects will best improve walking and biking access to jobs and daily needs. More >>

Upcoming events

Fall 2017 Community of Practice 
October 17-18, 2017 / Seattle, WA

SSTI’s fall 2017 Community of Practice meeting will be held Oct. 17-18, 2017 in Seattle. The meetings focus on peer-to-peer interaction between CEOs of state departments of transportation. These meetings allow attendees to share ideas and learn from one another’s experiences leading state DOTs. The meeting is open to state DOT CEOs and is by-invitation to others. For more information, contact Eric Sundquist, [email protected]

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