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TheCityFix Picks, October 29: Trick-or-Treat Toronto, Future Floating Cities, Google Transit in Bangalore
German-developed dashboard-mounted cameras intend to keep drivers alert of pending drowsiness. Photo: Copyright Fraunhofer IDMT

German-developed dashboard-mounted cameras intend to keep drivers alert of pending drowsiness. Photo: Copyright Fraunhofer IDMT

Welcome back to TheCityFix Picks, our series highlighting the newsy and noteworthy of the past week. Each Friday, we’ll run down the headlines falling under TheCityFix’s five themes: mobility, quality of life, environment, public space, and technology and innovation.

Mobility

More than 100 cities across Europe have launched bike sharing programs over the past few years. Der Spiegel takes a look at the explosive growth of such systems and their sustainability in the long run.

The transport department of Delhi is pushing the government for an additional 345 kilometers of BRT lines in the city by installing seven of the 18 proposed corridors in the third phase of construction of the Indian capital’s rapid transit infrastructure.

The Obama administration has awarded $2.4 billion in grants to advance passenger rail projects in 23 states. More than a third of the allotment goes to to California’s high-speed rail lines to be built between San Francisco and Los Angeles.

The Sustainable Urban Transport Project released a reading list on non-motorized transport, aiming to educate policymakers and city officials about the advantages of walking, cycling, rickshaws, and other forms of NMT.

Quality of Life

They are called the “killer Bluelines” of Delhi and now have met their own demise. The privately owned, poorly maintained buses are now out of service, after being involved in more than 1,000 road deaths over the past 10 years and claiming more than 65 lives in the past year.

Are you looking for the best place to take the kiddos trick-or-treating? Based on safety, walkability, number of children, and income level, Toronto is the best place to be this Halloween.

Environment

Five European public transport companies have committed to a four-year project to combat climate change, called ‘Ticket to Kyoto.” The agencies seek to use concrete energy-saving measures to make lower CO2 emissions the standard for public transport companies.

Nature’s beauty and clean air are cited as collateral damage with the felling of 72 trees to make way for a corridor of Johannesburg’s Rea Vaya.

The United States government for the first time has proposed fuel efficiency standards to be implemented in 2014 for heavy duty vehicles, such as semi-trucks and school buses.

With record passenger numbers, Amtrak is looking to improve system performance through a modernized and expanded fleet of 70 new electric locomotives to be operated in the Northeast corridor of the United States.

Public Space

As the effects of climate change claim more land with rising sea levels, floating cities are proposed for the low-lying, heavily populated areas of the world, like those in Bangladesh, China and Egypt.

Younger generations prefer apartments and iPhones over houses and cars, according to a new study by a Canadian real estate consulting group.

From Melbourne to Winnipeg, separated bike lanes have become quite a controversial issue. Why are so many people aggravated by the increase in bicycle infrastructure across the world?

Technology and Innovation

The future of alternative fuels really is green! The United States Navy recently carried out a successful test run of a gunboat powered by a algae-based fuel. In addition, recent research on algae-derived ethanol, when compared to gasoline, could reduce carbon output by 87 percent.

German researchers have developed an eye-tracking device that could soon help keep drowsy drivers alert on the road by issuing a warning before the driver has an opportunity to nod off to sleep.

Google Transit continues to grow with the addition of systems in Barcelona and Bangalore, a first for an Indian public transit agency.

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