I. How Design Can Help Build a ‘Transit Culture’ – Earlier this month the transit agency serving metropolitan Rochester, New York, announced amillion-dollar “rebranding” effort. That means everything from a new logo to new uniforms — all aimed at changing the public perception “that buses are only for people who have no other option,” the Democrat and Chronicle reports. The next brand will try to surround Rochester transit with a sense of comfort and ease.
II. The U.S. government owns thousands of unused buildings it doesn’t know what to do with – As reported by NPR, the FPRC lists nearly 80,000 properties that are either completely unused or sorely under-utilized. If these numbers are correct, this unused property could be costing taxpayers upwards of $1.7 billion in annual upkeep costs.
III. HealthCare.Gov Plans Deadline Leeway – Federal officials are planning a workaround that would effectively extend the March 31 deadline to enroll for health-care coverage for some users if technical glitches hamper a last-minute surge of signups on HealthCare.gov.
IV. A Timeless California Enclave Fears a City’s Sway – In Wood Colony, descendants of Anabaptist settlers farm in an unspoiled landscape and keep to the old ways. But they fear that is about to change.
V. A City of Madness, Bypassed by the N.C.A.A. – In three arenas strung along a three-mile stretch of Tropicana Avenue, 19 postseason men’s college basketball games were played on Wednesday and Thursday. The games attracted tens of thousands of fans, with many more watching on television. They were played under rules set by the N.C.A.A., college basketball’s governing body.
Governor drama in Obama backyard – Obama won by more than 15 percentage points in 2012 in the reliably blue state, but Republicans believe the Illinois governor’s mansion is within reach. Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn is facing dismal approval numbers, dragged down by the state’s basket-case economic and fiscal condition and an unpopular tax hike.
Government approves medical marijuana research – A University of Arizona study, which still requires DEA approval, would examine whether pot can help veterans cope with post-traumatic stress. The green light may clear the way for broader studies.
The Mood Of Every NYC Neighborhood, Based On Their 311 Complaints – The HereHere project analyzes data sent to the city’s complaint line and gives a sense of what each part of New York cares about at any given moment.
Massachusetts College Town Seeks Answers as Festivities Spin Out of Control – The arrest of 55 people during a pre-St. Patrick’s Day rite that turned violent has many people wondering how student partying can be controlled.
Craven Statehouse Behavior – In state after state, the gun lobby continues to find reliable allies for dangerous laws.
The Big City Bike Parking Negative Feedback Loop – Everybody knows that parking is a big problem in New York. Sometimes it seems as if there’s no place to secure your vehicle. It can be infuriating searching for a spot. Especially if your vehicle is a bicycle.
What if Hillary doesn’t run for president? A Democratic primary without Clinton would make for a wild 2016.
Why Bill Clinton didn’t blame the 1994 midterm elections on himself – About 4,000 pages of newly released documents show White House policies and priorities.
Millennials are abandoning Obama – A younger generation that propelled Obama to the presidency is no longer supporting him.
What now, Tigard? City’s charter amendment could affect others, too: Editorial Agenda 2014 – In the weeks ahead, Tigard must retain its place at the table in regional planning discussions to protect its civic and economic interests – and to ensure that neighboring, economically vital, parts of metropolitan Portland are unharmed by its charter amendment.
State Of The City: Hales Touts Renewal Reforms, Paving Streets, New Business – In a half-hour speech, Hales touted his successes cutting the city budget and paying down debt, paving 83 miles of streets, and attracting businesses to Portland like Airbnb, which he announced is bringing its headquarters and 160 jobs to Portland.
Oregon City may buy unused school building and convert it to a police station – The deal benefits both sides. The school district needs capital improvement funds. Oregon City must upgrade its police headquarters to meet state seismic standards by 2022.
Anti-transit vote in Tigard throws wrench in southwest corridor bike plans – When Tigard voters narrowly approved a ballot issue this weekdesigned to make it harder to build a light rail or rapid bus line through their city, they also threw a wrench in a different process: improving biking in the suburbs southwest of Portland.
Puyallup might extend pot holdout by 6 months – Almost a year and a half after Washington voters approved legalization of recreational marijuana, officials in Puyallup might stretch out the clock even longer in their city.
New Washington Crowdfunding Law Could Aid Startups – Washington state is considering a bill that will enable startups to take advantage of donations from in-state investors and get around complex federal securities regulations.
FBI balks at background checks for state retail marijuana— The FBI is refusing to run nationwide background checks on people applying to run legal marijuana businesses in Washington state, even though it has conducted similar checks i
State rejects water rights bid – The Willamette Water Co. had sought to be able to take 22 million gallons a day from the McKenzie River
Medical Marijuana Bill Dies in Washington State – Many medical marijuana dispensaries and patients in Washington saw the new rules as a threat, but supporters said they were crucial as recreational sales became legal.
Super Bowl someday? NFL panel visits Twin Cities to offer advice on landing the big game – The Super Bowl committee came to town yesterday to hear civic leaders’ pitch for the 2018 game.
Path from bankruptcy is a political minefield – In an interview with The Detroit News, the Washington lawyer says he did not adequately account for the culture of politicized confrontation that is making “consensual resolution” so elusive in the nation’s largest municipal bankruptcy. Silly him, he actually thought the city’s grim financials would begin to deliver agreements as far back as last June.
Condo, townhouse groups rap Minneapolis stance on Southwest LRT – Resident groups say they’d rather have freight trains than ground-level light rail, and they complain Minneapolis is ignoring their concerns in Southwest fight.
How ANDalyze is bringing water testing to the mainstream – Champaign-based ANDalyze, with operations in Chicago, taps into a market of faster, more accurate water testing.
Cities Have the Power to Lead the Renewable Energy Movement – How is this possible? That’s the question my colleagues and I set out to understand when we learned that a small town in Illinois—Village of Oak Park—was purchasing 100% renewable electricity.
South x. Southwest
Editorial: Neglect breeds neglect in West Dallas – A little corner of West Dallas seems to have fallen off the map in terms of code enforcement and vigilance by City Hall to ensure that industrial businesses abide by all laws, not just the most convenient ones. The area, along Singleton Boulevard between Westmoreland Road and Loop 12, appears to have escaped major scrutiny for years, allowing an anything-goes mentality to prevail among some business owners.
Councilman Krier wants public vote on streetcar — The City Council cannot call a referendum on San Antonio’s $32 million allocated to VIA Metropolitan Transit’s streetcar project, the city attorney said in an opinion Friday.
Tumbling Tumbleweeds Upend the Southwest – This year’s tumbleweed accumulations in the U.S. Southwest are historic in scale, piling up beside homesteads and blocking county roads.
As Owners of Roadside Institution Enter Political Fray, Texans Weigh Their Loyalties – Buc-ee’s convenience stores are known for their huge size, clean restrooms, millions of snack options and, now, a statewide political endorsement.
Top 10 worst-paying cities for women – Despite improving since the 1960s, the gender pay gap is still quite wide in the United States. Moreover, the gap seems to have leveled off in recent years, remaining at a substantial level. In 2012, women’s median earnings were just 78.3% those of men’s median earnings. In dollar terms, women made $10,404 less than men that year.
10 Tips for Giving Great Online Presentations – Don’t make rookie mistakes with your online presentation. Here are basic steps to ensure it’s efficient and entertaining.
Hiring Secrets of America’s Fastest-Growing Companies – Skip resumes, bag social media, and embrace the unexpected–and what else you need to know to recruit top talent.
The Social Network
U.S. plans to relinquish control over administration of the Internet – The federal government has been a partner in running the nonprofit, and the shift is likely to be controversial.
Google Glass’s battery is lousy on purpose, says Google man – Thad Starner has been wearing computers on his face for 21 years. Today he works with Google on Glass, the web giant’s wearable computing project which, because of its high-profile backer and the accompanying publicity blitz, also happens to be the go-to example of all that is good and evil about wearable devices.
Double Your Response on Pinterest & Twitter – Jen Rubio, social media manager for Warby Parker, talks about the power of doing what’s not unexpected on social media.
The do’s and don’ts of live-tweeting what’s heard on police scanners – But as exciting as it is to follow developing stories in real time, live-tweeting what you hear on the scanner can quickly turn nightmarish. Recall the Vancouver woman who unknowingly live-tweeted a car crash in which her own husband was killed. Recall the frantic pleas by Boston Police as hundreds broadcast their exact positions in the manhunt following the bombings.