Regional transportation news stories compiled by CommuterPage.com. Subscribe to a daily email with the most recent news, recent ACCS blog posts, and upcoming events. Every CommuterPage.com News email includes an "unsubscribe" link.
Metro lags behind other big transit systems in converting its bus fleet to electric, Sierra Club report says
Metro lags behind other large transit agencies in converting its bus fleet to electric and is on a “backward” path with its plan to purchase about 500 gas-fueled vehicles over the next five years, according to a report released Thursday.
Justin George, October 1, 2020, Washington Post
NHTSA deems October Pedestrian Safety Month
As a means of improving safety for vulnerable road users, the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has deemed October as the inaugural Pedestrian Safety Month.
Douglas Clark, October 1, 2020, Transportation Today
The D.C. region's most ambitious try at bus rapid transit is coming to Montgomery County
A 14-mile stretch of U.S. 29 in eastern Montgomery County will soon be a dream come true for bus riders, with modern stations, shorter waits and less time wasted in road traffic.
Luz Lazo, October 1, 2020, Washington Post
Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel construction is 2 years behind
Construction of an additional tube for the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel is now two years behind schedule.
September 30, 2020, WTOP
American Airlines to furlough 19,000 workers
American Airlines said Wednesday that it will begin furloughs of 19,000 workers Thursday but will reverse course if Congress reaches a deal on a new coronavirus relief package in the days ahead.
Zack Budryk, September 30, 2020, The Hill
Futuristic bus stations dot Route 29 for Montgomery's new Flash system
“We decided we really wanted to design something unique,” said Joana Conklin, who leads the county’s bus rapid transit system known as the Flash.
John Kelly, September 29, 2020, Washington Post
Potential safety hazard could lead to possible derailments on Silver Line, Metro says
A letter sent by Metro this month says the transit agency has identified a “potentially significant safety concern” involving work on a future extension of the Silver Line that is expected to open next year.
Tom Roussey, September 29, 2020, WJLA
Ex-Metro worker sentenced in scheme involving former NFL player
A former Metro employee who admitted to helping defraud the agency out of over $300,000 was sentenced Tuesday to two weeks of federal prison time and now must repay much of what was stolen.
Ken Duffy, September 29, 2020, WTOP
Audit faults MVA for suspicious addresses, 'points' not applied
The Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration issued drivers licenses to thousands of people who used questionable addresses as their place of residence, failed to properly track serious driving infractions that occurred in other states, and neglected to properly safeguard personal information, a legislative audit concluded.
September 30, 2020, WTOP
Woman struck by MARC train in Elkridge
A woman is dead after she was struck by a MARC train Tuesday morning in Maryland’s Howard County.
Colleen Kelleher, September 29, 2020, WTOP
Introducing... Pay-what-you-can membership
We want anyone to be able to join our community, regardless of their financial resources. And, we want to be better able to celebrate the people who dig deep and give generously to WABA.
Hannah Anderson Dana, September 28, 2020, WABA
VDOT hosting virtual Q&A for I-495 Express Lanes extension project
The Virginia Department of Transportation is hosting two question-and-answer sessions this week about the I-495 Express Lanes Northern Extension Project in advance of public hearings scheduled in October.
September 27, 2020, Inside NoVa
Airline industry set to cut more than 35,000 jobs this week
It’s another devastating blow for an industry facing a crisis analysts say is already far worse than it experienced after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, and one that has already seen employment in air transportation decline by 100,000 jobs according to one measure.
September 26, 2020, Washington Post
Despite Purple Line problems, Maryland will pursue public-private partnership for toll lane plan
Even as Maryland’s $5.6 billion public-private partnership for the Purple Line project is on the verge of collapsing mid-construction, the state is continuing to pursue a similar arrangement to add toll lanes to the Capital Beltway and Interstate 270.
Katherine Shaver, September 26, 2020, Washington Post
Lawmakers: Environmental review of Hogan highway plan is 'heavily skewed'
Nearly 70 members of the Maryland General Assembly have accused the State Highway Administration of tailoring a federally-mandated environmental study to fit a preordained plan for adding capacity to two highways in the Washington, D.C., suburbs.
Bruce DePuyt, September 27, 2020, WTOP
Metro asks riders for input on service cuts and other reductions as federal funding dries up
Metro announced it has opened a public comment period so riders can voice their feelings about service cuts, reduced hours, furloughed staff and other reductions as federal funding for the transit service runs out.
Zeke Hartner, September 26, 2020, WTOP
Metro Transit Police implement new written policy on force
As the country continues to deal with social justice issues pertaining to police and communities, the Metro Transit Police Department will have a watchdog group to review its incidents.
Adam Tuss, September 24, 2020, NBC Washington
D.C. 'Streatery' opens downtown with aim to keep restaurants afloat
Patio season starts to wind down this time of year, but for many restaurants outdoor dining is their only hope of survival amid the pandemic.
Cory Smith, September 25, 2020, NBC Washington
Senators reprimand Metro after scathing audit
Maryland and Virginia representatives say problems in rail control center should have been fixed long ago.
Justin George, September 25, 2020, Washington Post
E-scooter injuries on the rise, report finds
A new report from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has found that injuries and deaths associated with e-scooters are increasing along with their popularity.
Will Vitka, September 25, 2020, WTOP
Metro board members question whether region's low-income residents will take unfair hit with budget cuts
Metro board members representing the District and Maryland questioned the agency’s commitment to transit equity Thursday after learning it skipped doing a full analysis on how emergency budget cuts would impact low-income and minority riders.
Justin George, September 24, 2020, Washington Post
Public input sought for proposed DC Circulator Route in Ward 7
D.C. is asking the public to weigh in on seven options for a new bus route in its Northeast and Southeast neighborhoods.
Abigail Constantino, September 24, 2020, WTOP
New renderings offer a revamped vision of a Union Station designed for people, placemaking, and transit
The renovation project for Union Station seems to be undergoing an identity crisis, trying to figure out if the region’s main hub for transit will create a pathway for cars, or for people.
George Kevin Jordan, September 24, 2020, GGWash
Purple Line construction workers will be packed up and ready to leave by mid-October, contractor says
The clock is running out on Maryland reaching a settlement to keep the light-rail contractor on the job amid cost disputes.
Katherine Shaver, September 24, 2020, Washington Post
D.C. paid Streetcar contractor more than $5 million improperly
The District paid roughly $5.2 million in improper payments to the prime contractor on the D.C. Streetcar project from September 2010 through March 2019, a new report by the D.C. inspector general finds.
Andrew Giambrone, September 23, 2020, dcist
Angry residents react to shut down of Purple Line construction
People in disrupted neighborhoods are now left with torn up streets, closed roads, and dangerous sidewalks.
Scott Broom, September 23, 2020, WUSA9
Governors Highway Safety Association speaks out against racism in traffic enforcement
A new effort to promote road safety is tackling excessive force and racism.
Melissa Howell, September 23, 2020, WTOP
D.C. Council wants zero traffic fatalities by 2024. These are the changes they're proposing
A sweeping bill that aims to help reduce traffic deaths in the District passed the Council unanimously Tuesday.
Jordan Pascale, September 23, 2020, WAMU
Purple Line construction stops as builders prepare to quit
The companies building the Purple Line have stopped construction as they proceed with plans to quit the light-rail project amid disputes with the state about cost overruns, Maryland officials said Tuesday.
Katherine Shaver, September 22, 2020, Washington Post
DC Council approves bill aimed at expanding traffic cameras, reducing deaths on roadways
The DC Council unanimously approved a bill that implements safety measures to reduce the number of injuries and deaths to pedestrians on city streets while increasing the number of traffic cameras in the District.
September 22, 2020, WJLA
Purple Line will be delayed as MDOT seeks management solution
Maryland transportation officials said Tuesday they will take over day-to-day management of building the Purple Line, at least temporarily, as soon as construction crews pack up and depart, a process that could come as early as next week.
Bruce DePuyt, September 23, 2020, WTOP
Metro makes 'substantial progress' with safety concerns identified in audit
Metro made “substantial progress” in addressing safety concerns raised in a recent audit, but has work to do in confronting a reportedly toxic workplace culture, the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission said Tuesday.
Nick Iannelli, September 23, 2020, WTOP
There are no safeguards against investigation interference at Metro's ROCC, a report finds
Metro protocols don’t ensure investigations that occur are fully independent from the employees involved, according to a report recently released from the Washington Metrorail Safety Commission (WMSC).
Stephen Repetski, September 22, 2020, GGWash
Organizations advocate Safety Spectrum preservation
The American Highway Users Alliance recently joined a series of other organizations in supporting efforts to preserve the 5.9 GHz Safety Spectrum.
Douglas Clark, September 22, 2020, Transportation Today
Survey finds telework is here to stay even after the pandemic
A recent Commuter Connections survey looked at recent telework trends and how it may impact traffic after the pandemic.
Marcella Robertson, September 21, 2020, WUSA9
D.C. Council to vote on Vision Zero bill aimed at reducing traffic fatalities
The D.C. Council will vote Tuesday on a package of sweeping road-safety measures aimed at cutting the growing number of traffic injuries and fatalities in the nation's capital.
Luz Lazo, September 22, 2020, Washington Post
Section of Beach Drive closed to drivers, cyclists for flood repairs
Parts of the D.C. area are still dealing with the aftermath of heavy rains that blew through earlier in September.
Adam Tuss, September 21, 2020, NBC Washington
DC 'Streatery' grant aims to keep restaurants in business this winter
On Monday, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser's office officially announced a grant program that will help restaurant owners “winterize” outdoor spaces in an effort to keep the restaurants and businesses that heavily relied on “Streatery” outdoor summer spaces afloat as we push into the cooler months.
Stephanie Ramirez, September 21, 2020, Fox5
Commuter Connections wants you to commit to a car free Tuesday
Commuter Connections, a regional network of transportation organizations, is hosting its annual “Car Free Day” Tuesday, and is urging the D.C. region’s workforce to find a way to work that doesn’t involve driving.
September 21, 2020, WTOP
A streatery is coming to downtown D.C. this week
From September 25 until Oct 25, the streatery, dubbed “Downtown D.C. Dine Out on 8th Street,” will operate on Fridays from 5 p.m.-10 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from noon-10 p.m.
Nathan Diller, September 21, 2020, dcist
Tickets issued in Montgomery street racing crackdown
More than two dozen traffic tickets were issued in Montgomery County one evening last week as part of an effort to crack down on illegal street racing, the state police said.
Martin Weil, September 20, 2020, Washington Post
Windows open, when Montgomery Co. buses resume carrying students to schools
“When we resume transporting students to school, it will be with windows open,” said Todd Watkins, transportation director for Montgomery County Public Schools.
Neal Augenstein, September 21, 2020, WTOP
New Southwest DC art murals aim to make traffic safer
The intersection of 4th and I streets in Southwest D.C., where cars, bicyclists and pedestrians converge, is now adorned with four art murals.
Mike Murillo, September 20, 2020, WTOP
Study: 25% of car accidents happen in first 3 minutes of driving
The shorter the trip, the better the chances of being involved in an automobile accident, according to an Austrian telematics provider.
Matt Small, September 20, 2020, WTOP
Airline CEOs plead with Washington as layoffs loom
The race to prevent massive airline layoffs in October is heating up with CEOs and union leaders pleading with the White House and Congress to reach a deal for more industry aid.
Alex Gangitano, September 20, 2020, The Hill
Nearly 11,000 people have been exposed to the coronavirus on flights, the CDC says
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention investigated 1,600 cases of people who flew while at risk of spreading the coronavirus, identifying nearly 11,000 people who potentially were exposed to the virus on flights.
Ian Duncan, September 19, 2020, Washington Post
Railroads near full implementation of lifesaving automatic-braking technology
U.S. railroads are on track to meet a December deadline to implement an automatic braking system that could prevent catastrophic collisions and derailments caused by speeding, the Federal Railroad Administration said.
Luz Lazo, September 19, 2020, Washington Post
Metro moves toward service cuts as talks stall on coronavirus aid bill
The Metro board on Friday took the first step toward cutting $212 million from its operating budget, endorsing a plan that could lay off up to 1,700 employees, move up rail closing times and create longer transit waits.
Justin George, September 18, 2020, Washington Post
New study shows dangers of in-flight COVID-19 transmission
One person with COVID-19 infected 15 others during a long-haul flight from London to Vietnam in early March, according to a new analysis.
Nathaniel Weixel, September 18, 2020, The Hill
Capital Bikeshare celebrates 10 years in the Washington region
DC’s Capital Bikeshare marks its 10th birthday this Sunday, September 20. Along with iPads and electric car charging stations which also turn 10 this year, they’ve changed the possibilities for how many of us work and play.
Caitlin Rogger, September 18, 2020, GGWash