Joining Chicago, Cincinnati, Denver, and Kansas City, Seattle now offers reduced bus fares to low-income residents. Some worry the program entrenches class differences and doesn't truly aid social mobility.
For Governing magazine, Daniel Luzer reports on a new program out of King County, Washington in which low-income residents will pay $1.50 rather than the usual $2.75 to ride the Metro bus. The intent is to lower barriers keeping the very poor away from jobs.
The public reaction has been mixed. "'The point of public transportation,' says Katie Wilson of the Transit Riders Union, a Seattle group working to improve transit in the city, 'is to provide affordable transportation -- for everyone.'" With rents on the rise, a two-tiered system might prop up the idea of 'two Seattles,' even on the bus.
Besides, residents who qualify may not even elect to sign up: "A decade after San Francisco introduced its program, fewer than 6 percent of riders participate, even though 20 percent of Bay Area residents live below the poverty line."
Norman, Oklahoma Eliminates Parking Mandates
The city made a subtle, one-word change that frees up developers to build parking based on actual need and eliminates costly unnecessary parking.
Boston Transit Riders Report Safety Concerns
Almost three-quarters of current and former riders report feeling unsafe while using MBTA services.
Boston to Begin Zoning Code Update, Mayor Announces
It’s been nearly 60 years, but the city of Boston is finally ready to do a comprehensive rewrite of its zoning code.
Proposal Could Mandate Sidewalks as Part of Seattle Complete Streets
Almost a third of the city’s neighborhood streets lack sidewalks.
San Francisco Supervisors Punt Housing Ordinance
After hours of public comment, the zoning reform package aimed at increasing housing production and limiting red tape was delayed for further discussion.
Pittsburgh Launches Adaptive Bike Share Fleet
The new bikes include a recumbent bicycle and a front-loading cargo bike.
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HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research
Mpact: Mobility, Community, Possibility
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