Today’s Headlines

  • CDOT, City Fund “Mitigation” in Elyria Swansea for Pollution They’re Causing With I-70 Widening (DenPo)
  • School Kids, Transit Riders Take Advantage of Aurora’s Dockless Bike-Share (DenPo)
  • Will RTD Part Ways with Private Company That Builds, Operates Rail Lines? (CPR)
  • RTD’s “Rail Construction Machine” Teaches Nashville How Not to Build Transit (Tennessean)
  • State Legislators Have 10 Days to Close Transportation Funding Deal (DenPo)
  • Family of 12-Year-Old Rylie Guentensberger Memorializes Victim, Killed When Driver Crashed Through Store (9News)
  • RTD Driver Injured Trying to Clear Low Bridge at DIA (DenPo)
  • Denver Has Few Long-Distance Commuters, Is Slowly Gaining More (Route 50)

National headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • TakeFive

    “RTD’s “Rail Construction Machine” Teaches Nashville How Not to Build Transit”
    It’s fair to say that David Sachs and Jon Orcutt are ‘Birds of a Transit Feather.’ Since tomorrow is D Day in Nashville we’ll soon know the results of Jon’s wonderful wisdom and teaching ability. For Nashville, I do think they came up with a good plan and I wish them the best but all the wisdom in the world ain’t worth a Tinker’s Damn if voters reject funding the improvements.

    It’s also fair to say neither Sachs or Orcutt pay any mind to ‘Return on Investment’ which is fine as it neither’s job to do so. Let’s just hope that Denver’s $937 million voter-approved bond funding for improvements goes better than the half-disaster of the 2015 ‘Move Seattle’ results to date. https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/transportation/930-million-move-seattle-levy-falling-behind-on-project-promises-review-finds/

    • MT

      Interesting how when the budget is short for pedestrian and transit improvements they cut the projects. When the budget is short for highway projects they just spend more money.

      • TakeFive

        Not in Colorado… CDOT is easily one of the poorest funded state DOT’s especially when compared to other healthy, growing states. Chances are highways aren’t something you care about which is fine but Colorado is $billions and a good decade behind other peer states and it’s painfully obvious CDOT has not been able to spend money it doesn’t have.

        • MT

          They’re not poorly funded, they do a poor job of allocating resources.
          Why would they spend billions to widen I25 both north and south of Denver, and I70 through Denver if they can’t even maintain the roads they’ve already built? That’s purely bad decisions. If you can’t maintain what you’ve built, why would you build even more?

          If you think we just have to widen the highways because there is demand, there are much better ways to manage demand that can also raise revenue they are so desperate for. The demand is high because the price is zero. Price the highways. Relieve congestion, raise funds, and you won’t even need to do all this expansion.

          My original point being, when pedestrian and transit needs fall short of funding, they just get ditched. When highways “need” expansion, they find a way to get the money.

          Billion dollar highways and broken sidewalks. That’s our priorities.

          • TakeFive

            Who wouldathunk that fixing broken sidewalks would solve commuter congestion?

          • MT

            Widening highways has never solved commuter congestion.

          • TakeFive

            ‘Congestion’ is a misnomer. Added capacity accomplishes what is intended but Rush Hour congestion is a fact of life. Adequate funding did enable the 11th largest MSA to attain a rating of 47th (worst) for congestion so congestion can be successfully mitigated.

          • MT

            You brought it up.
            If congestion is your concern, tolls can solve it without any expansion.
            Then maybe use the funds to catch up on all that maintenance you can’t afford to do. Or use them to mitigate all the destruction the car traffic causes. Like by investing in transit so people have other options beside driving. Like rebuilding urban streets so they are safe enough places for people to walk, or even have sidewalks in the first place. Things that make the city safer, cleaner, more financially solvent.

            Or just keep pouring money into highways, the return on that is great. CDOT is just raking in the cash from their super smart investments.

          • TakeFive

            “Congestion” is a streets-blogger obsession. I’d be more concerned, like most people among metro area residents about capacity which will mitigate the worst congestion.

            I don’t see things as black and white and am all for better transit. Unfortunately transit is yugely expensive both in initial capital costs and in ongoing subsidies. You and I might be able to rationalize it inside the echochamber but winning votes among the whole population is a different challenge. I happen to read Randal O’Tooles latest piece and to his credit he’s become less ideological and more substantive. https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2018/04/19/uber-lyft-ridesharing-displacing-urban-mass-transit-column/504211002/