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  •  Amtrak’s fiscal 2012 operating loss was the lowest in nearly 38 years, which is a sign of progress, Joseph Boardman, the railroad’s president and CEO, said Thursday. The $361 million loss for the year ending Sept. 30 was down 19 percent from the previous year. In a conference call with reporters, Boardman also laid out an agenda for this year that includes delivery of the first of 70 new electric locomotives and 130 long-distance passenger cars, expansion of the Acela Express high-speed service in the Northeast with an additional New York-Washington round trip, and beginning the work necessary to acquire new high-speed trains.

    Boston Globe
  • The Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) of the Research and Innovative Technology Administration pro- duces the Pocket Guide to Transportation as a compact resource that provides snapshots of data on the U.S. transportation system and highlights major transportation trends. The Pocket Guide contains a wealth of informa- tion that supports the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Strategic Goals.

  • Fewer kids were injured during early morning and after school hours once new traffic lights, pedestrian signals and speed bumps were put around New York City schools, according to a new study....As a result of Safe Routes to School, the city's Department of Transportation undertook safety improvements at the 124 New York City schools (out of a total of 1,471) with the highest injury rates in the city.

  • Smart parking network startup Streetline has raised $25 million in a Series C round of investment, both to expand its work with cities that use its networked sensors and software platforms to connect drivers to parking spaces, and to explore how to make that network connect to the “Internet of Things.”... Last month, Streetline and Cisco joined up to network much of the downtown sections of Bay Area cities San Mateo and San Carlos. Cisco said it was specifically interested in learning how it can use the WirelessHART networks that Streetline sets up to connect not only parking,  but other city services, into its “Internet of Things” aspirations.

    Greentech Media
  • Flight delays are the bane of any traveller. They also have an economic impact, an estimated of $40 billion per year in the US alone, according to the 2008 Report of the Congress Joint Economic Committee. So a better understanding of the nature of flight delays is surely of great interest. Today, Pablo Fleurquin at the Institute for Cross-Disciplinary Physics and Complex Systems in Spain, and a couple of pals, reveal a unique approach to this problem that shows how flight delays spread across the US. Fleurquin and co begin by thinking about the air transportation system as a network in which airports are nodes and the flights between them edges.

    Technology Review
  • First of three stories about airline biofuels.

    There's an old saying in the aviation business: Lift is a gift, but thrust is a must. Behind the truism is a harsh reality for airlines trying to reduce their emissions and slash sky-high fuel costs. It takes a lot of petroleum to get an airplane going, and electrifying the fleet is not an option.

    E&E Climate Wire
  • Dense fog makes san Francisco one of the nation's most challenging places to pilot an airplane or ship. But while jet aircraft have highly sophisticated electronic, computer and communication systems, most oil tankers and other large commercial ships do not, largely because those systems are so expensive.

    Mercury News
  • zzbart.jpg

    On weekdays, BART commuters in San Francisco get to play the unwelcome equivalent of a human jigsaw puzzle...while crowding is already an issue, the problem is only going to get worse — total ridership for the entire system could nearly double to hit 750,000 passengers a day in 15 years, a level that would be unsustainable under BART’s current conditions, according to the transit agency....With those factors in mind, the regional rail operator is proposing several changes at the two easternmost downtown San Francisco stations, including removing furniture and payphones, adding surcharges or premium fare prices, and eventually building new platforms at the sites....The transit agency could charge more expensive “premium” fares for passengers arriving at the Embarcadero or Montgomery stations.

    SF Examiner
  • zzBART.jpg

    The recovering economy, high gas prices and growing environmental consciousness are driving record ridership on BART. But the surge in riders - about three times the increase that was expected - could also bring problems if the transit district doesn't act to increase its capacity and rejuvenate its aging infrastructure.

    SF Chronicle
  • 20130114Security4-blog480.jpg

     Times Square, one the most free-flowing public spaces in the world, will be constrained a bit by the addition of dozens of stainless-steel bollards and granite barriers that are intended to prevent terrorists — and drunks — from driving vehicles on to the pedestrian plazas that have been created between West 42nd and West 47th Streets.

    New York Times