Biking How bicycling will save the economy (if we let it)

Author: Elly Blue

Imagine getting a $3,000 to $12,000 tax rebate this year. Now imagine it coming again and again. Every year it grows by around a thousand dollars.

Imagine how this would change your daily life.

Sounds like a teabagger’s wet dream, but it’s actually a conservative estimate of how much you’d save by ditching your car, or even just one of your cars — and getting on a bicycle instead.

Car-centric conditions don’t always make it easy to choose the bicycle. Communities designed exclusively for motor vehicles impose a major financial penalty on those who are compelled to take on the expense of driving. But if you’re one of those who lives in a bike-friendlier place, you’ll be doing your local business community a good turn and padding Uncle Sam’s pockets as well as your own if you trade four wheels for two.

Read the full article at


Green Jobs Growing in America’s Inner Cities

While the number of inner-city jobs in the largest U.S. cities has grown by a scant 1% overall during the past decade, new research from Apollo, the Initiative for a Competitive City (ICIC), and Green For All, suggests that inner-city green jobs have grown by 11%, more than 10 times the rate of job growth overall. These preliminary results do not cover the full range of green jobs, but the findings are significant nonetheless. Perhaps most notably, because this level of growth appears to match the level of green economic job growth beyond the inner city, marking a stark departure from decades of metropolitan job growth patterns. Something is going right, and understanding what that is and creating a model for economic development that capitalizes on this emerging opportunity is the focus of a pilot project underway in the city of Flint. Flint’s Mayor Dayne Walling will appoint a task force to examine the city’s green economic job growth and to make recommendations for how the city can continue to attract green business and good jobs. The final report and recommendations will be released by Apollo Alliance, ICIC, and Green For All in Summer 2011.

Read the full article at


New report reveals smart transportation spending creates jobs, grows the economy

In his State of the Union address, President Obama called on Americans to “out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build the rest of the world” to win the future. To rebuild America, he said, we will aim to put “more Americans to work repairing crumbling roads and bridges.”

A new report from Smart Growth America analyzes states’ investments in infrastructure to determine whether they made the best use of their spending based on job creation numbers. Recent Lessons from the Stimulus: Transportation Funding and Job Creation evaluates how successful states have been in creating jobs with their flexible $26.6 billion of transportation funds from the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA). Those results should guide governors and other leaders in revitalizing America’s transportation system, maximizing job creation from transportation dollars and rebuilding the economy.

According to data sent by the states to Congress, the states that created the most jobs were the ones that invested in public transportation projects and projects that maintained and repaired existing roads and bridges. The states that spent their funds predominantly building new roads and bridges created fewer jobs.

Read the full article at


New Report Shows How Smart Technology Can Ease Traffic Congestion, Improve Transportation Options and Strengthen Global Competitiveness

WASHINGTON, D.C. – A new report from four leading transportation organizations demonstrates how existing and emerging technologies can squeeze more capacity from over-burdened highways, help commuters avoid traffic delays and expand and improve transportation options, all while saving money and creating jobs.

“Smart Mobility for a 21st Century America” shows why improving efficiency through technology is critical as our population grows and ages, budgets tighten and consumer preferences shift. The report was co-authored by Transportation for America, the Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America), the Association for Commuter Transportation (ACT) and the University of Michigan SMART Initiative.

With President Obama’s support for a $50 billion down payment for infrastructure and the real prospect that Congress will move forward on a comprehensive, multi-year transportation bill in the upcoming session, the paper makes the case for investing in technology and innovation to help solve our nation’s most critical transportation problems.

The new report was released today in conjunction with the IBM Smarter Transportation Virtual Forum, which brought together experts from across the public sector, private industry and academia to discuss urban mobility and the growing need for technology solutions to the nation’s transportation, economic and environmental challenges.

Read the full article at


Good Congestion?

Congestion is like cholesterol. There’s good congestion and bad congestion.

That’s the main idea from this great article from The Sydney Morning Herald.

Norquist – a progressive Democrat, who, after 16 years as mayor, retired to head the organisation Congress for the New Urbanism in Chicago – says motorways should be ring roads around the edges of metropolitan areas, leaving streets free to clog up occasionally with buses, walkers, cyclists, train commuters and, yes, local cars carrying people who patronise businesses. ”That’s the good congestion,” he says, ”when you generate traffic and passing trade that keeps a neighbourhood vibrant.”

Read the full text at


Fiscal Conservatives Urge Market-Based Transportation Reform

From New Urban Network

A coalition of “fiscal conservatives,” and national security experts called Mobility Choice released a report Tuesday calling for measures to reduce oil dependence and liquid fuels consumption in the transportation sector.

The report, Taking The Wheel: Achieving a Competitive Transportation Sector Through Mobility Choice, recommends market-based approaches such as an “oil security fee,” congestion pricing, pay-as-you-drive insurance, liberalized land-use development rules, measures to boost telecommuting, and better allocation of public transit dollars.

To read full article, go here: