Climate Hawk – David Roberts writes about the difference between being an environmentalist and a climate hawk: “The wealthy developed world, but especially the US West Coast, is filled with liberals and environmentalists who are perfectly willing to drive a Prius and buy organic veggies, but raise holy hell if anyone tries to build a bike lane, light rail station, or new housing anywhere near them.”
Carbon Cost of Flying – Seattle’s airport is the nation’s fastest growing, and its carbon emissions are on the rise. KUOW digs into how the trend can be reversed even as Governor Jay Inslee’s carbon tax bill proposes to exempt aviation fuel.
Trimming Rail Costs – Writing for CityLab, Alon Levy delves into why American rail transit is so expensive to build–typically several times more than in other wealthy nations. Among the reasons is American transit agencies’ penchant for overstaffing construction sites and poor project management.
Pitching Transit to Nashville – Nashville has a $5.2 billion plan to add 26 miles of light rail, 25 miles of rapid bus lines, and a downtown transit tunnel, but it will need voter approval in May. As the political rhetoric heats up, Yonah Freemark debunked some ridiculous anti-transit claims in Nashville. (I also wrote about Nashville’s plan on Friday.)
Rolf in the Henhouse – SEIU 775 President David Rolf signed a letter along with Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi calling for portable benefits for Uber drivers–providing a modicum of benefits but avoiding reclassifying drivers as employees rather than independent contractors. Just such a bill is making its way through the Washington State House of Representatives. Heidi Groover covered some of the heat the local “rising star” centrist-minded labor leader is taking for teaming up with Uber.
Toxic HR Culture – Crosscut‘s David Kroman uncovered turmoil at the City’s Human Resources department, which has a workplace environment many employees described as “toxic” and incredibly stressful.
Taskforce’d – Sydney Brownstone covered Mayor Jenny Durkan’s plan to address sexual harassment at the City of Seattle. In addition to promising to end sexual harassment settlements inside City departments, Mayor Durkan is assembling a task force to craft solutions.
Bikeshare Clutter – Just six months in to private bikeshare rollout, Dallas already has an estimated 20,000 dockless bikes on the streets. The City told its bikeshare operators to clean up their act as complaints of bike-obstructed downtown sidewalks increased. Lime promised reforms; Ofo claimed its competitors we’re causing the problem.
Youth Jail Progress – Seattle Weekly‘s Melissa Hellmann reports King County is still constructing its planned Children and Family Justice Center (a.k.a. the youth jail) even though the majority of its funding was invalidated in appeals court. The County is gambling it will win an appeal in the state supreme court, but some County Councilmembers are starting to get concerned about what will happen to the County’s budget if that appeal fails.
MidTown Design Advances – Capitol Hill Seattle Blog covered the design review for MidTown Center on Wednesday. The 23rd and Union project advanced from the early design guidance phase, meaning it could get approval at its next design review meeting. (Read Patrick Taylor’s take on the MidTown designs here.)