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  • Oil industry lobbyists returned to the White House this week to argue against a rule that would slash the amount of sulfur in gasoline, prompting supporters to fear more delays to the long-awaited standards. Representatives of the American Petroleum Institute yesterday met with White House Office of Management and Budget officials to discuss U.S. EPA's so-called Tier 3 gasoline standards. And on Monday, the refining industry group American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers met with OMB to discuss the rule.

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    ...The costs savings are startling and worth restating: it was 99.8 percent cheaper to roll out BRT in Curitiba than build a subway. Since then, BRT has been enthusiastically deployed in 147 cities spread over six continents. But as developing countries in Africa and Asia have pumped millions of dollars into new buses, reengineered streets, and stylish loading stations, the results have been disappointing in cities like Cape Town, New Delhi, and Bangkok.

    Atlantic Cities
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    ...Academics refer to this kind of collaborative mapmaking as "volunteered geographic information," and OpenStreetMap is one of the most successful examples of it out there. Research into the system suggests that these amateur maps are impressively accurate in communities dense with contributors (like Germany: Germans love OpenStreetMap). But until now, it's been much easier to assess how good these maps are than to ask how they got that way.

    Atlantic Cities
  • Nearly 70 percent of American adult drivers talk on the phone while driving, at least occasionally. This according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, released today. It shows that Americans are far more likely to talk on the phone while driving than some of their European counterparts. The CDC relied on data from 2011 EuroPNStyles and HealthStyles online surveys.

    Atlantic Cities
  • Now that the surface transportation bill fight is over — at least for the moment — transportation reformers are eying the expiration date of another key piece of legislation later this year. The reauthorization of thePassenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act of 2008 (PRIIA) could be a chance to make some needed changes to jump-start progress in the passenger rail system. Or it could be the next partisan battleground, making it a process as unnavigable as the lead-up to the passage of MAP-21.

  • More changes are coming to the local stretch of Interstate 80, among them the day that ramp metering lights are turned on....The question is when these lights will get turned on. California Department of Transportation policy calls for the agency to first reach agreements with local cities on how to operate the lights. Agreements can address such issues as under what traffic conditions the lights are used.

    Fairfield Daily Republic
  • Marin has the most people it has ever had living in its borders, but the county remains the population slow-growth capital of the Bay Area, according to U.S. Census data released Wednesday.

    Marin Independent Journal
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    It took decades of campaigning and years of construction, but the Devil's Slide Tunnel is nearly ready to open. Caltrans says the twin tunnels, accompanied by a pair of bridges, will open in time to carry morning commute traffic on March 26.

    SF Chronicle
  • Minutes before 10 a.m. on weekdays at the Bay Bridge toll plaza, you can find a half-dozen cars on the side of the freeway, hazard lights flashing. It isn't a mass breakdown. It's drivers trying to save a couple bucks by waiting until the clock ticks past 9:59 a.m. and the toll to cross the bridge drops from $6 to $4.

    SF Chronicle
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    Later this year, Los Angeles International Airport will open a major piece of its new, more than $1.5 billion international terminal, part of the most expansive public works project in city history. Proponents say the nation's third-busiest airport needs the new building to remain competitive with modern, efficient airports like Hong Kong and Seoul, major domestic hubs like Houston and Chicago and pluckier upstarts like Denver and Las Vegas.

    LA Daily News