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  • The Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit's application for $20 million in federal funds has been denied. The federal government only requires a 10 percent contribution and SMART had a 50 percent contribution available...The location of the station is in a highly remote location, above the current Marin Airporter site and far from the ferry. Parking, walking in bad weather, and poor bus connections will assure little or no ridership. 

    Marin Independent Journal
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    ..."The fact is that if you're obese then you're 78% more likely to be killed in a car crash," said Chris O'Connor, CEO of Humanetics, citing the statistic from the University of California-Berkeley's Safe Transportation and Research Education Center.

    USA Today
  • The ideal solution would be national rules that apply everywhere, says Steven Shladover, a research engineer for the intelligent-transportation program at the University of California at Berkeley. The challenge is formidable. 

    Fortune
  • ...While it seems as though we are caught in a seemingly endless cycle of incremental innovation for the humble car airbag, there are some out-of-the-box ideas out there. One idea is to supplement airbags inside cars with airbags outside cars in order to protect innocent bystanders...But the real potential for disruptive innovation in today’s airbag industry is in “pre-crash” airbags that work in concert with sensors and cameras on the vehicle. This would help to reduce one of the most common problems — airbags that deploy upon impact with too much force. 

    Washington Post
  • According to a new report from the Centre for Process Innovation, a British technology research company, which projects that in 10 years the industry will be ready to offer passengers a richer visual experience than what a small, fogged-up plastic window allows.

    CityLab
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    London is already the biggest city in the world to have any form of tax that restricts driving in the center—the congestion charge is currently £11.50 ($18.60) per day to travel into central London during the working week...Now, with more than 4,000 people dying from air quality-related illnesses in London every year, the city is proposing a new charge to improve air quality:  an Ultra Low Emission Zone. From September 2020, London wants to charge drivers of some of the most polluting cars an extra £12.50 to enter the city center on top of the congestion charge, meaning the commuters in old cars will need to pay £24. With big trucks, the new charge will rise to as much as £100 a day.

    CityLab
  • Facing increasing scrutiny of how it handled the recall of dangerously defective airbags, the nation’s auto safety regulator sent a letter on Wednesday to 10 major automakers and Takata, the airbags’ maker, urging a faster response. 

    New York Times
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     In Bhutan, there is a king who rides a bicycle up and down the mountains. Like many stories you will hear in this tiny Himalayan nation, it sounds like a fairy tale. In fact, it’s hard news. 

    New York Times
  • The California High-Speed Rail Authority is facing seven lawsuits over its approval of the Fresno-Bakersfield segment of its statewide bullet-train line. Now the agency is asking the federal Surface Transportation Board — which oversees rail lines in the U.S. and gave a green light to the project over the summer — to declare that those lawsuits should not be able to seek a California judge’s order to block construction.

    Fresno Bee
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    On April 2, 2014, a protester in Oakland, California, mounted a Yahoo bus, climbed to the front of the roof, and vomited onto the top of the windshieldIf not the year's most persuasive act of dissent, it was certainly one of the most memorable demonstrations in the Bay Area...Even among American tech hubs, San Francisco stands alone with both the most expensive real estate and the fewest new construction permits per unit since 1990.

    The Atlantic