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Vol. 9, No. 4 - July/August 1998

News Analysis & Commentary

  • TEA-21 Becomes Law
  • Timetable for Enactment of Ozone Standards Modified
  • South Coast Employers May Gain Permanent Exemption from Trip Reduction Requirement
  • Amtrak's Precarious Financila Position Underscored in a New GAO Report

The Wired Car
Remember when a mobile cellular phone was considered the frontier of communications technology? Not any more. Soon, personal computers will offer car owners the ultimate in connectedness. Motorists will be able to download information from the Internet, send and retrieve e-mail, transfer data from their office computers, receive real-time traffic information and weather reports, and obtain driving directions. Such at least, is the future as seen by Microsoft, Intel, and a host of other computer firms.

Mobility and the Elderly
The aging of America's driving population is no longer an abstract concern. Nationwide, there will be an estimated 40 million drivers over age 70 in the year 2020, up from 24 million in 1995, according to census data. The implications of this trend were discussed at a recent annual meeting of MIT's Cooperative Mobility Program.

The Value Pricing Pilot Program - Commentary
In a move that some observers think could launch a national trend, Congress has authorized a six-year $50 million "Value Pricing Pilot Program" as part of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century. The program replaces the Congestion Pricing Pilot Program which had been authorized in the original ISTEA legislation in 1991. The change in the name of the program, from Congestion Pricing to Value Pricing, appears as more than accidental.

Track-sharing: Intermodalism in Action
Inspired by the success of the German city of Karlsruhe, many cities throughout Europe are entering into tracksharing arrangements with regional railways. These arrangements permit municipal light rail transit systems to interconnect their track with the track of regional railways and provide seamless, transferless service between outlying suburbs and the heart of the city. Will U.S. cities follow their example?


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