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The Source for Public Transportation News and Analysis
August 12, 2011
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New Fuel Savings Standards for Buses

President Obama announced new fuel efficiency standards Aug. 9 that will save American businesses that operate and own commercial vehicles approximately $50 billion in fuel costs over the life of the program. These work trucks, buses, and other medium- and heavy-duty vehicles will be required to meet fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas emission standards for the first time ever beginning in 2014. [More]

» The city of Danville, IL, is looking for a director, public transportation. [More]
» Veolia Transportation seeks candidates for general manager positions throughout the organization. [More]
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UTA Inaugurates Service on Two New TRAX Lines

In anticipation of the beginning of revenue service Aug. 7, the Utah Transit Authority (UTA) in Salt Lake City celebrated the opening of the Mid-Jordan and West Valley TRAX light rail lines with events Aug. 2 in South Jordan and West Valley City, UT. The public had its first opportunity to ride the new lines on Aug. 3. [More]

DOT Selects Six U.S. Agencies for Transit Management Pilot Program

The Federal Transit Administration is inaugurating its Transit Asset Management pilot program and has selected six U.S. public transportation agencies to participate. Those agencies are Boston’s Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority; the Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board in San Carlos, CA, operator of Caltrain commuter rail; Chicago’s Regional Transportation Authority (RTA); the Utah Transit Authority (UTA) in Salt Lake City; Valley Regional Transit, Meridian, ID; and the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation. [More]

California to Receive $179 Million in Federal Rail Funds

DOT Secretary Ray LaHood has announced $179 million for the state of California to continue building a statewide passenger rail network incorporating both high-speed and intercity service. [More]

Transit-Related Tax Measures Pass in Michigan

Voters in five out of six Michigan municipalities approved property tax measures to support public transportation on Aug. 2, resulting in an 83 percent success rate for the day. During 2011, U.S. voters have passed 12 out of 14 measures for a total success rate of 85 percent. [More]

MTI Reviews Ballot Initiatives for Rail Projects

The Mineta Transportation Institute (MTI) has released a research report that presents an updated analysis of a 2001 report on transportation tax elections in urban areas across the U.S. The report, Revisiting Factors Associated with the Success of Ballot Initiatives with a Substantial Rail Transit Component, is the second update of what was originally released in 2000. [More]

Building America’s Future: Invest in Infrastructure

 The U.S. must pass a six-year surface transportation authorization bill and “develop a national infrastructure strategy for the next decade that makes choices based on economics, not politics,” according to Falling Apart and Falling Behind, a report released Aug. 8 by the advocacy organization Building America’s Future, established by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg; former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell; and former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. [More]

CH2M HILL Acquires Part of Booz Allen Hamilton

CH2M HILL has completed its acquisition of Booz Allen Hamilton’s State & Local Government Transit Consulting (S&L Transit) business. [More]

MBTA’s Davey to Succeed Mullan at MassDOT

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick has announced that Richard A. Davey, general manager of Boston’s Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) since 2010, will become secretary and chief executive officer of Massachusetts DOT effective Sept. 1. He will succeed Jeffrey Mullan, who has announced his decision to resign and return to the private sector. [More]

Strachan Moves to London to Help with Olympics

Peter Strachan, chief executive officer of TransLink Transit Authority in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia, will leave that post in October to join the United Kingdom government as director-general in the Department of Transport. He will be responsible for major projects in London—including the 2012 Olympic Games next summer. [More]

Business Networking—Coming to New Orleans!

APTA’s 2011 Annual Meeting and EXPO, Oct. 2-5 in New Orleans, is an outstanding opportunity for APTA’s business members to meet potential customers and show off their latest products and services to the industry. It also allows business members to network with each other and explore potential partnering and new business-to business-relationships. [More]

Join in APTA’s Oct. 1 Tribute to William Millar

As William Millar completes his 15-year tenure as president, APTA invites participants in the 2011 Annual Meeting and EXPO to celebrate his more than 40 years in the public transportation industry at a gala reception and dinner Saturday, Oct. 1, at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside Hotel, prior to the beginning of the meeting. [More]

APTA Member Participation Needed for Advocacy Outreach

 As the Sept. 30, 2011, deadline nears for extension of transportation authorization legislation and the federal gas tax, the path Congress will take to pass a bill or extension is unclear. APTA will therefore support two critical advocacy outreach efforts emphasizing the need for federal funding; both are nationwide programs that will provide opportunities for member participation. [More]

Gov. Carey Dies; Worked to Keep NYC Subways Running

Hugh Carey, the former New York governor who died Aug. 6 at age 92, served at a time—the 1970s and 1980s—when New York City was facing a financial crisis. He realized that the poor condition of the city’s public transportation system was part of the problem, and that rescuing transit would be part of the solution. [More]

DOT Helps with ‘Feds Feed Families’ Drive

DOT Secretary Ray LaHood has announced the participation of his department and its employees in the third annual Feds Feed Families food drive, through which federal employees collect as much non-perishable food as possible for area food shelters. [More]

Report Examines Planning for Regional Economies

A new report from the Mineta Transportation Institute examines the possible economic impact if local governments do not conform with state-mandated regional efforts to lower greenhouse gas levels—including the impact on public transportation. The report focuses on the Sacramento, CA, region. [More]


McMillan Speaks on Sustainability Issues at Los Angeles Workshop

Speakers including Therese McMillan, deputy administrator of the Federal Transit Administration, addressed such issues as energy efficiency and socially responsible development processes in public transportation during “The Value of Sustainability,” APTA’s Seventh Annual Sustainability and Public Transportation Workshop, held July 31-Aug. 3 in Los Angeles. [More]

TCRP Releases Reports

The Transportation Research Board recently released the following Transit Cooperative Research Program publications. [More]

Seeking Papers on Rail Transport

The Rail Transportation Division of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers is accepting abstracts through Oct. 1 for its 2012 Joint Rail Conference, April 17-19 in Philadelphia. APTA is one of seven co-sponsors of this major, multidisciplinary North American railroad conference that will cover all aspects of rail transportation and engineering research. [More]


Los Angeles Metro Board Approves ‘Green Construction Policy’

The Los Angeles Metro Board of Directors voted Aug. 4 to adopt a Green Construction Policy. Under this policy, the agency must identify and mitigate the impact of emissions on human health, the environment, and climate for on-road and off-road construction and equipment used by Metro. [More]

EPA Promotes Public Transportation

 The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) promotes the use of public transportation in its newest public service announcement, with the help of NASCAR race car driver Leilani Munter. [More]

UMass Introduces Certificate Transit Management Program

UMass Transit Service, the public transportation system serving the University of Massachusetts Amherst, is teaming up with the College of Engineering’s Transportation Center and Connecticut Transit in Hartford to offer a certificate program in transit management and operations. [More]

SamTrans Gathers Input for Its Ridership Service Plan Effort

The San Mateo County Transit District (SamTrans) in San Carlos, CA, has begun collecting data from its riders as part of its Service Plan effort. The agency conducted five public meetings in July to gather input. [More]


Transit Secrets: Learning From Hong Kong

There is really no denying that transportation makes money. Just consider the huge shopping malls perched around interstate off-ramps, the office parks positioned close to airports, the skyscrapers next to subway stations.

But transportation itself is usually a money loser. We pour billions of public dollars into highways, airports and transit systems, while others, the home builders, the department store mavens, make the money that comes from those public investments.

Hong Kong’s metro system, MTR, has changed this equation, and that is why it’s worth looking at. [More]


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

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