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Can students transform us back to a walking society?

Thousands of students at dozens of East Bay schools are walking to school today as part of International Walk and Roll to School Day. Skeptics might dismiss this as something like “international eat your green beans day.”

 But many experts say Americans’ shift to drive more and walk and bicycle less is taking a heavy toll on the public in terms of childhood obesity, increased air pollution and traffic congestion. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Wednesday, October 6th, 2010
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Blue Angels produce show in the air, gridlock on the ground

The  annual visit of the Blue Angels  to the Bay Area this week means exciting  precision flying shows in the air but heavy traffic traffic congestion on the ground near San Francisco waterfront viewing areas. The Golden Gate National Recreation Area urges people to use public transit, carpools, or bicycles to get around San Francisco for the Blue Angels’ shows scheduled from 3 to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

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Posted on Tuesday, October 5th, 2010
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AC Transit gets $5.4 million to upgrade bus maintenance

AC Transit has landed a $5.4 million federal grant to upgrade its system for tracking and planning bus maintenance. The money, AC Transit officials said, will help make bus service more reliable and save the district money.

The competitive grant, announced today, is from the Federal Transit Administration’s state of  good repair program, a new initiative to reduce  the maintenance backlog at public transit systems. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Monday, October 4th, 2010
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AC Transit is 50 years old today. Will it last 50 more?

AC Transit is having its 50th birthday today. Yes. it’s a half century since the public transit system began service, replacing the privately owned and defunct Key System that ran buses, ferries, and trolleys in East Bay neighborhoods and and across the Bay. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Friday, October 1st, 2010
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BART to riders: tell us when train cars lose their cool

The heat wave the last few days has caused problems for many people, including BART riders on train cars with malfunctioning air conditioner units. The fastest way to get the cooling units fixed, BART says,  is for riders to report the problem through the train car intercom system. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Wednesday, September 29th, 2010
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Is AC Transit headed toward a death spiral with latest service cuts?

How dare you cut bus service that riders need to get to jobs, school, doctor’s appointments, social service offices and other places, said Michelle Rousey, an Oakland resident in a wheelchair, to a sober AC Transit board Wednesday night. “It’s not just about the dollar. There are people behind this, ” she said.

Despite pleas like this in a dramatic session, the transit board unanimously voted to slash weekend and late night service in December in what is planned to be the third cut this year. Board members agreed the transit system is headed in a downward spiral and openly expressed worries about where it will end. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Thursday, September 23rd, 2010
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BART Board okays awarding contract to build rail extension to Oakland airport

The BART board this morning gave its final permission to award the contact to build a rail extension to the Oakland International Airport. The $484 million project project has been delayed by funding questions and a long simmering debate about whether it should be scrapped in favor of a cheaper plan for express buses.

The 7-1 vote of the board gave General Manager Dorothy Dugger authority to immediately award contracts to private companies to  build and operate the 3.2-mile cable-propelled tram system on elevated tracks from  the BART Coliseum station to the airport.  Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Thursday, September 16th, 2010
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Feds push MTC to check transit projects for civil rights compliance

The federal government is telling the Bay Area’s transportation commission to take a more active role in checking whether proposed public transit projects would have unfair impacts on minorities and low-income people. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Friday, August 27th, 2010
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AC Transit to appeal court-ordered arbitration in contract dispute

The AC Transit Board voted last night to appeal a court order forcing the transit district into arbitration with its prolonged contract dispute, and also decided to appeal an injunction forcing the bus sytem to return to old work rules and contract provisions in operating the district. The decision is the latest twist in the confict over the board’s effort to wring cost-cutting concessions out of its unionized bus drivers and mechanics as the district struggles with financial problems and service cuts.

  Read more about it later today at www.contracostatimes.com . AC Transit reiterated last night that  it is going to look in the coming weeks at cutting weekend bus service and other money saving options to offset the higher cost of operating the district under the old contract provisions. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Thursday, August 19th, 2010
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Commuter nightmare creates “Obooma” incident

You know you’re having a bad commute day when your trip by seaplane accidentally violates restricted air space around the president’s Air Force One and military jets are scrambled as result. That’s what happened Tuesday afternoon to a pilot and passenger who flew into Lake Washington next to Seattle.

The sonic booms caused by the fighter jets triggered an avalanche of 911 calls and the production of ”Obooma” t-shirts for sale online. Read about it here. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Wednesday, August 18th, 2010
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