Transit Tuesdays: Year-old Capital Bikeshare evolves, survives, thrives
Our one-year-old Capital Bikeshare has not been wasting any time since its first birthday last month. Not only has the service unveiled new rates and a 3-day pass rather than 5-day but it's also released an interactive map to let all the District's bicyclists weigh in on how the service should reach new blocks and new users with its shiny new bikes. Day passes now cost $7 rather than $5.
Did the service have to keep up this velocity? No. I've talked before about Capital Bikeshare's predecessor service SmartBike, which helped show the way for North American bikesharing and died as a result of its small scale and poor value for its riders. But Capital Bikeshare is adding 30 new stations in Arlington. It's adding 32 in the District. At last month's birthday bash, DDOT director Terry Bellamy announced another 50 stations on top of that and 500 new bikes coming in 2012. Alexandria voted to join and has stations planned for next year. Capital Bikeshare has learned a critical lesson: Grow fast and grow carefully.
Where should Capital Bikeshare put all its new stations? Suggest them on a dynamic bike map launched this week. Organizers are clearly interested in what regions it should move next and notes: "Montgomery County is particularly interested in input for the areas of Rockville, Shady Grove, Takoma Park, Silver Spring, Friendship Heights, and Bethesda." From the outset, CaBi has shown a willingness to listen to its riders and adapt accordingly. Last week's news at On Foot emphasized the wisdom of good transportation planning, and Capital Bikeshare has shown a keen understanding of how to expand.
Elsewhere in the realms of transportation, urbanism, and real estate...
Trashy neighbors: Occupy D.C. has apparently begun to frustrate the downtown BID with all the trash, I learned at Saturday's National Park Service town hall. As terrible as economic inequality is, we should also learn to occupy our trashcans. "We want to make sure our facilities are protected and most importantly their health and safety is protected," the Park Service's Bob Vogel said, via the Post's Tim Craig. "We are walking that fine line.”
John McCain's failed swipe at bicyclists and pedestrians: Streetsblog D.C. reports yet another attempt against the Transportation Enhancements funding, this time from our 2008 Republican presidential nominee. McCain's amendment would have "greatly restricted" funding ... and it appears to have died.
The Logan Circle Bike Thieves: Yes, bikes are wonderful ... for a getaway. Just ask these criminals.
Welcome to Washington, D.C.: As I've talked about before, a place's name matters quite a great deal, and that notion has begun receiving attention lately. Charles R. Wolfe noted the same thing over at The Atlantic and considered how they're generated. But beyond the names are the welcome signs. Here's a look at the most welcoming among them via Atlantic Cities' Mark Byrnes. DCist reported on one of the District's own welcome signs earlier this month.
Inside the District Department of Transportation sex scandal: Transit news doesn't get much spicier than this, folks. City Paper's Alan Suderman has been providing sordid dispatches from the Reeves Center for the past week or so, and I hope you've been following along. Sex in the office, sex in government cars, sexy secret e-mails unveiled, the resulting discipline ... it's worth reading. Here's the latest update on how DDOT has reacted.
Bicyclists practice how to testify against hostile drivers: The Washington Area Bicyclist Association is holding two sessions to help coach bicyclists in their testimony in anticipation of the cyclist anti-harassment bill going before the D.C. Council in early November.
"Bus operators could have prevented 41 percent of the accidents." Kytja Weir reports on the rising number of Metrobus accidents in D.C. — and how they can be prevented.
The D.C. Taxicab Commission considers whether passengers should have to pay upfront: The commission met last week and discovered that several cab drivers feel that riders just run off without paying for the service. Commissioner Ron Linton wants a clearer idea of how big a problem this is and what next steps will satisfy the District's drivers.
Househunting on your bike: One real estate agency attempts to capitalize on the city's biking enthusiasm.
Clinton Yates will tell you about car crashes: The Post editor shared a stirring tale of anxiety, auto misfortune, and revelation in a series of tweets this week, demonstrating that 140 character limits don't have to kill a good narrative in the slightest. "It's funny how life's worst moments actually give you a chance to realize what you want out of life," Yates declared about the D.C. car crash. TBD's Ryan Kearney collected the tweets via Storify.
The value of Thomas the Tank Engine: What's a good train worth these days? The company behind Thomas the Tank Engine was just sold for $680 million, according to the A.P.
One for the leaf peepers among us: DCist's Martin Austermuhle advises committed leafers on where to see the seasons change. "Once October hits, we're the type of people to make a break to the closest wooded area to observe the changing of the leaves," he writes.
What we learned from Rail~Volution: Greater Greater Washington's Jennifer Joy Madden shares her encouraging transit lessons derived from the four-day panel. I describe the difficulties transit planners face when considering things 10, 20, and 50 years down the line as well as Harriet Tregoning's idea to unite commuters along their transit lines through social media.
Registration renegades no longer face jail time: As WAMU reports, the Council finally ruled that expired tags are no longer a jailable offense just under a week ago.
Read more daily transportation news at TBD On Foot.
RecommendedRecent Facebook Activity
Best of TBD In case you missed it
No one knows quite what Klout is, but these big 'myopic little twits' appear to have it.
TBD Blogs What you need to read
The Market Report
@TBD On Foot
Only On 7
"Like" ABC7 on facebook and you can win $700 in groceries delivered to your door, thanks to Peapod by Giant! Enter daily before 4pm Friday! Plus, you can receive 2 additional entries for each friend who enters!