Category Archives: Transportation

Evening transit riders use a Metro Route No. 36 bus on Monday, March 21, 2016 in downtown Seattle. Bus ridership in Seattle is the fastest-growing segment of all major commuting modes; and among the nation's 50 largest cities, Seattle has recorded the largest increase in bus ridership.

Transit begets acceptance

This Calgary-focused post originally appeared on Spur. It breaks my heart that I am not saying anything new when I voice my concern about the increasing amount of brazen acts of intolerance and exclusion that have appeared in our city. From what we learned from Nenshi’s re-election campaign to the recent expression on the University of […]

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Pecha-Kucha: The more things change…

This post originally appeared on Spur. I recently had the chance to give a Pecha-Kucha at the Student Summit of the Canadian Institute of Transportation Engineers. A Pecha-Kucha is a presentation with 20 slides, each timed to be exactly 20 seconds long. Since I had written out what I wanted to say, I figured I […]

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Learning from Airport Transit

This Calgary-focused post first appeared on Spur. Believe it or not, waiting for a flight can be a perfect time to study transit operations. Airports are, in many ways, miniature cities with lots of pedestrians. Passengers, laden down with bags, place a high value on a comfortable shuttle trip between terminals. Travelers are also very uncertainty-averse: […]

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Green Line: Let’s talk about money

This Calgary-focused post originally appeared on Spur. If you are a semi-occasional reader of Spur, you might have noticed that I tend to avoid talking about costs when discussing projects like the Green Line. I very rarely talk about specific dollar values, and when I speak on the radio I tend to avoid them as […]

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The Calgary pedestrian experience

Last weekend, I had the chance to be part of the planning process for the Southwest Transitway that is part of the larger expansion of the city’s primary transit network. The meeting was full of great input from community advocates who know their neighbourhoods like the back of their hand, and I learned a lot […]

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The Calgary-Edmonton Hyperloop

This Alberta-foused post first appeared on Spur. I want to propose another pipeline for Alberta. Only this time, it’s for people. In 2013 Elon Musk proposed a “new” type of transportation system. I say “new” with quotations because the idea has been around for a while, but Musk has put his own, sensible spin on the […]

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SoBi: Hamilton’s route to bike share success

This post originally appeared on Spur. By simple virtue of there being may cities in the world, most innovative transportation and urban planning ideas will not be new to Calgary. We can, and we should, learn from other cities around the world. While it is easy to insist that “Calgary is not Amsterdam”, or “Calgary […]

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What do “Beg Buttons” really represent?

This post originally appeared on Spur. When I watched the American presidential “debate” last Monday, I was not expecting anything from that spectacle to tie into an article on pedestrian crossings, but here it is. For me, the most poignant thing I heard in that debate was during the discussion on racial issues. Clinton said, […]

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A desire named streetcar

This post originally appeared on Spur. I should start by coming clean: I didn’t come up with that clever title (though I wish I had). It’s from a 1992 paper [PDF] titled A Desire Named Streetcar: Fantasy and Fact in Rail Transit Planning, discussing a topic (US transit grant funding policy) that is only tangential to our discussion […]

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Can roads be over-engineered?

This post originally appeared on Spur. Nobody likes a speeding ticket, but “speed traps” might be an indicator of a larger design problem. I’m sure many Calgarians can identify places in the city where the police like to set up and catch speeders. For me, Memorial Drive Westbound near 14 St. NW (by the CBC building) and John […]

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