APTA | Passenger Transport
October 11, 2010

In This Issue

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President Cites New Report in Call for Transportation Authorization

President Barack Obama, at an Oct. 11 White House event attended by governors and mayors, renewed his call for a $50 billion jump start to long-term transportation infrastructure investment, noting the findings of a recent report citing the ongoing need to repair public transportation assets, as well as roads and bridges. [More]

Rogoff Keynotes APTA Annual Meeting in San Antonio
BY SUSAN BERLIN, Senior Editor

Using the famous opening line from Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities—“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”—Administrator Peter M. Rogoff of the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) kicked off his keynote speech during the Oct. 4 Opening General Session of the APTA Annual Meeting to describe the ups and downs faced by public transportation in the past year. [More]

LaHood Announces $776 Million in Grants

On Oct. 4, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, joined in a conference call by Peter M. Rogoff, administrator of the Federal Transit Administration, announced a combined $776 million for urban and rural transit providers in 45 states and the District of Columbia to help bring buses, bus facilities, and related equipment into a state of good repair. Money from FTA’s new State of Good Repair discretionary grant program will go to 152 projects. [More]

Scanlon, Thomas, and Ford Are Elected to Lead APTA

Michael J. Scanlon, general manager/chief executive officer of the San Mateo County Transit District and Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board (Caltrain) in San Carlos, CA, was elected APTA’s chair at the Oct. 3 Annual Business Meeting in San Antonio, TX, during the 2010 APTA Annual Meeting. [More]

APTA Adopts High-Speed Rail Legislative Principles

Recent federal policy for high-speed and intercity passenger rail has been enacted in pieces through a series of federal bills that include the Passenger Rail Investment and Improvement Act of 2008, the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act of 2009, and several recent federal transportation appropriations bills. [More]

Mineta/Skinner Public Transportation Report Urges Substantial Federal Funding, Recommends 10 Key Reforms

A study group led by two former U.S. secretaries of transportation has released a report warning that the deteriorating condition of the nation’s transportation infrastructure will drastically weaken the national economy without major reforms to transportation planning, financing, and implementation. [More]

High-Speed Rail Meeting in Las Vegas

The Western High-Speed Rail Alliance will host a conference on the theme “The Rail Ahead: Building a National High-Speed Rail System Through Partnerships” Oct. 13-15 at the Vdara Hotel and Spa @ CityCenter in Las Vegas. [More]

DC-Area Trolley Museum Reopening Celebrated

After being moved to make way for a new highway expansion and being closed for more than a year, the recently reopened National Capital Trolley Museum in Colesville, MD, in the suburbs of Washington, DC, hosted an event Sept. 21 to celebrate its success. [More]

APTA, CUTA Renew Bond

APTA and the Canadian Urban Transit Association (CUTA) signed a cooperative agreement at the 2010 APTA Annual Meeting. [More]

APTA Employees Recognized

Two APTA staff members—Pamela L. Boswell and Paul Dean—recently received special recognition for their achievements in the public transportation industry. [More]

Authorization, Economy, Infrastructure, Inclusion; Multiple Topics Jump Start APTA’s 2010 Annual Meeting in San Antonio
BY SUSAN BERLIN, Senior Editor

“San Antonio is known as a city of missions,” said APTA President William Millar in his welcoming remarks at the Opening General Session of the 2010 APTA Annual Meeting in San Antonio, TX. “And we are here with a mission of our own: to share knowledge, create opportunities, and advance public transportation.” [More]

VIA: Developing a Vision for Long-Term Regional Transportation

The Oct. 4 Host Forum at the APTA Annual Meeting, “Developing an Innovative Transit Vision into a Long-Range Plan,” highlighted the progress of VIA Metropolitan Transit’s “Long-Range Comprehensive Transportation Plan for 2035,” called SmartWaySA. [More]

Fast Trains Translate Into Economic Growth and Jobs; Tuesday Forum Discusses Funding, Other High-Speed Rail Challenges
BY SUSAN R. PAISNER, Senior Managing Editor

What will the $8 billion in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds for high-speed rail mean to America’s travelers? The Oct. 5 General Forum at the APTA Annual Meeting, “High-Speed Rail in the U.S.—A Status Update,” provided attendees with an opportunity to hear directly how grant recipients in the Midwest, Florida, and Texas are working to change the transportation face of the American landscape while simultaneously turning ARRA dollars into real jobs. [More]

APTA Honors AdWheel Grand Award Winners for Marketing, Communications Excellence

The APTA Marketing and Communications Committee presented its 2010 AdWheel Grand Awards at ceremonies Oct. 4 during the APTA Annual Meeting in San Antonio, TX. [More]

2010 AdWheel Awards: First-Place Winners

Here is the complete list of first-place winners in the 2010 AdWheel Awards competition. Grand Award winners are listed in bold. [More]

Gladwell: Keeping the Message Simple
BY SUSAN BERLIN, Senior Editor

“There is an enormous amount of power in the concept of the public good,” said Malcolm Gladwell, best-selling author of The Tipping Point, Blink, and Outliers: The Story of Success. [More]

Customer Service? Do the Right Thing
BY LYNNE T. DEAN, Special to Passenger Transport

Employees of Southwest Airlines are in the customer service business—they just happen to provide airline transportation, said Camille Keith, an original employee of the airline and most recently its vice president of special marketing. During the interactive Professional Development session she led Oct. 6 in San Antonio, TX, participants learned the inside story about the company consistently rated No. 1 in customer service and employee satisfaction. [More]

‘Flygirl’ Armour: Don’t Let Obstacles Stop You
BY SUSAN BERLIN, Senior Editor

Vernice “Flygirl” Armour may seem unique. Her childhood dream of being a police officer on horseback—along with a chance to attend Mardi Gras as part of an ROTC women’s rifle team—led her to become the first African-American woman to fly combat missions for the U.S. Marine Corps, serving two tours in Iraq. [More]

APTA Honors ‘Best of the Best’ at Awards Luncheon

The public transportation industry honored its top leaders and agencies in North America at the Oct. 5 APTA Awards Luncheon, held during the APTA Annual Meeting in San Antonio, TX. [More]

Coping with Funding Challenges in a Tough Economy
BY SUSAN BERLIN, Senior Editor

Representatives of the two largest U.S. public transportation agencies—New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) and the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA)—joined other speakers to examine funding issues in difficult economic times at an Oct. 4 General Forum during the APTA Annual Meeting in San Antonio, TX. [More]

At the Closing General Session

Political prognosticator Dr. Larry J. Sabato offered his predictions for the 2010 congressional elections and their effect on the federal agenda at the Oct. 6 Closing General Session. [More]

More Scenes from the Annual Meeting

Here are more scenes from the 2010 APTA Annual Meeting in San Antonio, TX. [More]

The $54 question: Is rail worth it?

With anti-rail activists whipped into a frenzy over threats that passenger rail services pose to Wisconsin and the state's finances, it's time to step back and take a closer look. Are rail opponents onto something, or are they on something? [More]

NYC Transit Introduces Prototype Help Point Intercom for Stations

MTA New York City Transit (NYC Transit) has announced plans to install its newly designed Help Point Intercom (HPI) in two stations along the Lexington Avenue Line. [More]

TriMet, INIT Partner on Technology Installation on Paratransit Vehicles

The Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District of Oregon (TriMet) in Portland, OR, has partnered with INIT, Innovations in Transportation Inc., to install the company’s combined on-board computers and mobile data terminals (COPILOTtouch) in 254 paratransit vehicles and 15 supervisory vehicles. [More]

Sacramento Offers Live Chats with General Manager Wiley

The Sacramento Regional Transit District (RT) in Sacramento, CA, marked the two-year anniversary of its online “Transit Talk with the General Manager” program on Oct. 1. [More]

CDTA Marks 40th Anniversary with Return to 40-Cent Fares

The Capital District Transportation Authority (CDTA) in Albany, NY, commemorated its 40th anniversary of service by rolling back fares to the original 40 cents on Sept. 16. [More]

SFRTA Launches Free ‘Link’ Service in Fort Lauderdale Neighborhoods

The South Florida Regional Transportation Authority (SFRTA)/Tri-Rail in Pompano Beach has entered into a partnership with the Downtown Fort Lauderdale Transportation Management Association to provide a free community bus service for the city of Fort Lauderdale. [More]

People on the Move

Passenger Transport announces the following hirings and promotions in public transportation agencies and suppliers. Items appear in People on the Move in the order in which they are received. [More]

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