Reconnecting America People * Places * Possibility

News: Milwaukee Streetcar Progress, Intermodal Traffic Increase, Battery Powered Trams, Ann Arbor Rail Support, Megacities Impact

Tracks News - In this section you'll find news from cities around the country as well as interviews and general reporting on issues.  It might be from a newspaper or a blog, but it counts as news.

Austin: Central Texas Transit Effort Lacks Leadership

Austin American Statesman

Austin officials and other Central Texas civic leaders have developed an ambitious vision for a network of passenger trains and other transit projects, but the planning lacks leadership and the concept hasn't been adequately sold to the public, according to a report by national transit experts released Friday...

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Milwaukee: Full Speed Ahead for the Streetcar

Business Journals (Paywall) 

The looming question of utility relocation costs will remain unresolved until this summer, but city planners are moving full speed on plans to build a controversial downtown Milwaukee streetcar system...

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National: Intermodal Traffic Rises 1.6% During the Week

TT News

U.S. rail intermodal traffic rose 1.6% last week over the same same week a year ago, the Association of American Railroads said...

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International: Two Crossrail TBMs Arrive in UK

The sixth and seventh Crossrail TBMs are on their way to the UK after undergoing factory tests in Germany. Both machines are now being dismantled at the Herrenknecht factory before they are transported to Rotterdam, where they will travel by ferry to Tilbury, Essex...

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North Carolina: Senator Appalled by McCrory's Comments

North Carolina Business Journals

N.C. Sen. Malcolm Graham released a fiery response Friday afternoon to reports that Gov. Pat McCrory had suggested to Charlotte city staffers that the state's commitment to helping fund the light-rail Blue Line extension could be in jeopardy...

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International: Battery Powered Intercity Trains Possible

Guardian UK

If for some an intercity express will always resemble an oversized toy then this is perhaps just one stage further towards an extravagant childhood dream: a battery-powered train capable of travelling 600 miles on a single charge...

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International: Lagos Looks to Ropeways


A cable car company, Ropeways Transport Limited, is set to launch a cable car mass urban transit system in the nation's commercial capital, Lagos...

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Ann Arbor: Local Residents Support Rail Line

Ann Arbor Journal

An electric light-rail system is the preferred choice for a transportation system connecting northeast Ann Arbor to the southern limits...

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National: Megacities Shift World's Center of Gravity

CNBC Money Control

In 2008, for the first time in history, half the world's population lived in cites. In 2011, China passed the same milestone. According to a study by McKinsey, the consultancy, one-fifth of the planet resides in just 600 cities that generate up to 60 per cent of the world's output...

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Tampa: Builder Promotes Ybor Redevelopment

Tampa Tribune

The little house on East 24th Street is getting a makeover after years of neglect. The termite-eaten foundations have been replaced and the sagging bedroom floor shored up...

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Research: Your Life Chances Affect Where You Live

International Journal of Urban and Regional Research

This article advances a critique of the 'neighbourhood effects' genre in urban studies, by arguing that an acceptance of the 'where you live affects your life chances' thesis, however well-intentioned, misses the key structural question of why people live where they do in cities...

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New York: Ed Koch, Highly Quotable Mayor

Wall Street Journal

Former New York Mayor Ed Koch was passionate, opinionated, sometimes cranky - and highly quotable...

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Los Angeles: Beach Cities Are Getting Healthier

Los Angeles Times (via LA Streetsblog) 

A comprehensive effort to improve the health of residents living in the beach cities is doing just that, according to new data released Wednesday...

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International: China Flattens 700 Mountains to Urbanize

USA Today

The hills are alive with the sound of machines. As dozens of excavators gouge the slopes, and countless trucks groan past to dump yellow earth into the valley below, Ye Xingwu pauses from repair work to reflect on their landscape-shattering task in the desolate mountains of the northwest Gansu province...

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New York: Green Goes With Everything

New York Times

Ron Shiffman, an Israeli-born, Bronx-raised urban planner and a Park Sloper long before the Slope was chic, has spent half a century trying to make New York a more livable city...

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National: Portland's Got Top Talent

Wall Street Journal

Years ago, my son got into the car after his first all-star baseball practice, more upbeat than usual. "Yeah Mom, on this team, all the players can throw and catch!" Low expectations? Perhaps...

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Sacramento: Wetlands Could Bog Down Development

Sacramento Bee

As Sacramento County's real-estate market starts to pick up, some tiny animals could put the brakes on development plans, including the just-approved Cordova Hills project...

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