The Mobility Hub

Your weekly guide to the latest in shared mobility

SUMC News and Announcements

Dear American City,

The pressure is great. Your planners, strategists, engineers, and consultants must plan mobility goals and GHG emission reduction targets using actionable estimates. You need a base from which to work.SUMC created the Shared Mobility Benefits (“Emissions”) Calculator so you can estimate emissions savings by incorporating a modal mix of shared mobility options and transportation scenarios—and find out which services may help turn your greenhouse gas mitigation goals into concrete plans.

It does this for over 300 U.S. cities.

Learn a bit more about the calculator.
Go right to it and access the methodology.

New project overviews focusing on commuter benefits and bikeshare access
SUMC’s Learning Center is the go-to place to learn about exciting shared mobility projects in communities across the United States. Take a moment and read about Metro Transit’s Residential Pass program in the Twin Cities and how Madison residents can now get free bikeshare passes at their neighborhood library.

Take the first annual Week Without Driving challenge
The event, which runs from October 22 -29, is spearheaded by Disability Rights Washington and the Director of their Disability Mobility Initiative Anna Zivarts. You may remember them from our 2021 National Shared Mobility Summit where they spoke at a session discussing On-Demand Mobility and the Challenge of Access. Watch it here.

50% off ALL print books from Island Press until October 10th.
You can check out their Simply Everything sale (including all paperback and hardcover books) on their site here, which includes these mobility must-reads:

  • Right of Way, Race, Class and the Silent Epidemic of Pedestrian Deaths in America by Angie Schmitt
  • Better Buses, Better Cities: How to Plan, Run, and Win the Fight for Effective Transit by Steven Higashide
  • New Mobilities: Smart Planning for Emerging Transportation Technologies by Todd Litman

In fact, Litman was featured in our Summit Meet-the-Author series where he talked about his New Mobilities book. If you missed that conversation, you can view it on our YouTube channel.

It’s time for the Fall 2021 Urban Transportation Center Seminar Series
The program kicks off on October 21 from noon to 1 p.m. with Pace Suburban Bus sharing their plans to reimagine public transportation as the region recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. The Featured speaker will be Pace Executive Director Rocky Donahue. The event will be held on Zoom.  

Mobility Justice

“The Legacy of Racism in Transit”, a new video from TransitCenter, focuses on the history of racial disparities faced by Black and brown residents in cities when planners and officials accommodated the white suburban commuter.

Transportation Justice Fellow Kiana Parker uses her experience with Seattle’s Burke-Gilman Trail in Seattle to illustrate the need to include people with disabilities in the planning process when you develop trails, sidewalks, and other public infrastructure.

Towns and cities with limited resources often rely on air-conditioned indoor public spaces like libraries to help people flee extreme heat or find relief during natural disasters. When these spaces shut down, the negative effects of climate change hit the most vulnerable communities the hardest.

Ridehailing/Carsharing/Carpooling 

Ridehailing has frequently gone toe-to-toe with transit agencies in vying for ridership. Via took the “let’s work with them” approach to form public-private partnerships and reanimate paratransit and on-demand services in small and large municipalities alike.

On that note, ridehailing prices around the US continue to soar as Lyft and Uber driver shortages hit many cities, and as the Wall Street Journal puts it, if you “want a bargain ride? Hail a taxi.”

Blink Mobility will be supercharging the BlueLA carsharing service in LA County with 300 new street-side EV charging stations at 60 area locations with up to 200 more EVs ready to roll around South LA, Boyle Heights, Pico-Union, and East Hollywood. Read all about the SUMC-supported BlueLA program on our site.

Bikesharing & Micromobility

The bike boom in the US has led to metros embracing new cycling and active transportation trails and paths (such as New York’s shiny new Brooklyn Bridge bike lane) which is giving two-wheeled mobility a safer and more prominent spot in the typically car-centric street hierarchy.

Pandemic anxiety and non-traditional commuting patterns are keeping public transit ridership low in San Francisco, but people have embraced shared scooter, bike, and moped services to get around—so much so that people used micromobility more this summer than the pre-pandemic summer of 2019.

Bikesharing is back at the White House! The Biden Administration reinstated the Capital Bikeshare station on the White House campus (removed by Trump citing a security concern) and it even “has 11 bikes— four more than when it was removed four years ago.”

Transit

Berlin, Bergen, and Bogotá are cleaning up their public transit systems, from reviving electric tram lines ripped out when the Berlin Wall went up to electrifying buses and using battery-powered ferries in Bergen to the first metro in Bogotá. These changes are making the cities’ air cleaner, commutes easier, and reducing traffic jams.

A Baltimore study analyzed different city neighborhoods’ access to transit as well as social vulnerability, pollution, and health and found that public transit provides disparate levels of service along racial and ethnic lines. Guess who got the better half?

Seattleites are getting faster, more reliable shared travel with Sound Transit opening the Northgate light rail extension. This 4.3-mile extension adds 3 new stations and marks the start of the tripling of the light rail network from 22 miles to 62 miles over the next three years.

There’s a new partnership in the Midwest with Indianapolis Public Transportation Corporation (IndyGo) awarding a contract to RATP Dev USA to manage paratransit services effective October 1, 2021.

Technology

Governors from Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin came together in a bipartisan effort to electrify the Midwest with the Regional Electric Vehicle Midwest Coalition (REV Midwest). Their pledge includes collaborating on an EV charging network and taking other steps to reduce carbon emissions, and create job opportunities.

At least in the UK, bus shelters are getting some love with the most advanced in the country coming to Cathedral Square in Worcester. We’re talking real-time passenger information, smart lighting, and integrated CCTV. And the shelters are made from graffiti-resistant recycled bottles. And they’re powered by two solar panels and a vertical wind turbine. And they’re 100% recyclable.

Driverless taxis are officially a reality, at least in California. Two of the leading AV companies in the U.S., Waymo and Cruise, have received permits to offer rides to passengers in their robotaxis, with Cruise approved to give rides in fully driverless vehicles and Waymo allowed to deploy AVs with human monitors behind the wheel.

Sustainability

A new study quantifies diesel truck pollution from corporate actions and calculates local health impacts, which include increases in childhood asthma rates and lower life expectancies. These details are essential to working with companies to cut emissions, especially as they make up half of the total amount from the transportation sector.

North Carolina has a new Task Force that’s focusing on a more efficient solution to cutting GHG’s from cars than the “the slow shift to electric vehicles”: driving less. The Task Force includes Southern Environmental Law Center Attorney Kym Hunter and a diverse group of advocates and government officials who will set vehicle miles traveled reduction targets for the state.

While pointing the blame for the climate crisis is dangerous and futile, a new analysis produced by Carbon Brief reveals which countries produced the largest amount of CO2 emissions since 1850—and the U.S. won (lost, really) by a landslide. China and Russia follow.

Project Funding Opportunities

RFP: Community Mobility Read-to-Launch Grants
National Center for Mobility Management
Deadline: October 15

RFP: Bikeshare System
Crawford Area Transportation Authority (CATA)
Meadville, PA
Due: October 22, 2021

Invitation for Bid: Purple Line Bus Rapid Transit Construction Project
Indianapolis Public Transportation Corporation (IndyGo)
Deadline: October 28
Email Dave Adamson at dadamson@indygo.net

RFP: Micro Transit Program
Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority
Cleveland, OH
Responses Due: October 29

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