Mass Transit is Amazing For Everyone (Else)

You can't really feel smug about taking public transpo when you live in New York, where driving to work would be a special kind of hell. But if you live in a city where it's possible to park and drive and blare the radio and not be surrounded on all sides of your body by terrible terrible people on your way to things, and you still take public transportation: you get to feel smug.

My Last Hundred Bucks: Shanghai Edition

21元 ($3.42) Taxi, to meet a friend for lunch; I was running late.

Schwarzfahren (Or: Exploits in Fare Evasion While Living in Berlin)

At first, traveling illegally is electrifying; even the dullest journeys become thrilling, suspenseful, dangerous.

Reviews of Public Transportation

Recently I was in Sydney on business, which is just the most amazing and douchiest sentence I've ever written. But I was, and on my first night I had plans to get drinks with the friend of a friend. I left the event venue (where they held boxing at the Olympics! God, I love the Olympics) a responsible amount of early, with Google Maps' assurance that all I needed to do was take the monorail one stop. I was willing to pay the unreasonable price of $5 for this because it was worth that much to me not to be lost in a foreign country at night. Come to think of it, that's probably the business model for all overpriced transit aimed mainly at tourists.

Citibike Not Earning Its Keep

New York City's bikeshare system, while popular, is inching towards bankruptcy and bleeding more money every day. So what the hell is going on? One problem is that it's popular with local users who get the yearlong passes with a much lower profit margin than the single-use passes intended to fund the system. The idea of visiting New York City and hopping on one of these bikes on a whim does seem like a bit of a stretch. With, "How to Make a Bikeshare Fair and Functional" Jordan Fraade at the Baffler looks at the bigger picture:

Here’s What You Spend on Transportation Each Month

What we spend to get around.

So Long, Sedan; Hello, Bus

I’m not suggesting everyone sell their Buick for a bus pass, or that buses are a far superior way of traveling. But once upon a time, I had to sell my car to pay off some traffic tickets and ended up having to rely on Kansas City's public transportation system to get around.

Best Deterrent For Driving a Car in The City? Expensive Parking

From Paul Bisceglio at Pacific Standard:
[Urban planners] have tried various strategies for discouraging car use in cities around the world, including expanding railways and building bike lanes. One of the most common strategies is hiking up the cost of on- and off-street parking—an intuitive approach. Its effectiveness has been difficult to verify, though, because so many different factors contribute to car volume in any given city.

Government Works! Only 8 Weeks After Mailing in My Broken MetroCard I Got a New One

As a lesbian, I carry my keys on a carabiner in my right pocket. That way I can look cool and theoretically defend myself quickly (my rape whistle is on my keys, duh). In this same vein of thought, I don’t like to carry my MetroCard in my wallet because I don’t want to pull it out every time I get on the subway. Because thieves are clamoring for my wallet. So I generally carry it in my jacket or my back pocket.

The problem with this is that my keys poked a little hole in my MetroCard and eventually it stopped working. I found this out right after I had loaded $50 on it, and my train was rapidly approaching the station. The unhelpful little guy in the box tried it a few times and then shoved some paperwork in my hands with my still unusable card, so I had missed my train AND had to buy a new one. Nu uh, city government, you ain’t getting away with this!

So I just filled out the paperwork with my address the approximate amount on the card and why it wasn’t working. Also it’s free to send it!

I had almost completely forgotten about it and dismissed it as just more paperwork lost in the NYC municipal shuffle, but I checked my mail today and viola! A brand new card with 45 bucks on it!

 

Lib Tietjen lives in and knows everything about Brooklyn.

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