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RTD FasTracks North Metro Rail set to break ground

 DENVER — The Regional Transportation District (RTD) will break ground on the North Metro Rail Line, a new commuter rail service that will improve transit options for Denver’s northern region and connect riders to existing transit services. In December, RTD awarded a contract to Regional Rail Partners (RRP) to design and build the first 12.5-mile phase of the line to 124th Avenue. Construction is scheduled to be completed in 2018.

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Fitch: U.S. transportation trends demand new funding solutions

New York — Public transportation investment strategies will need to transform if trends toward increased multifamily housing, declines in driving, and increasing public transportation usage continue over the long run, Fitch Ratings says. Recent U.S. Census Bureau data showed a shift to more multifamily development in urban areas and that public transportation usage hit an all-time high. In Fitch’s view, the transportation needs of the next 50 years will be markedly different from those of the past 50 years. U.S. policymakers must begin adapting their current decisions to these future needs. If these trends persist and meaningful policy changes are not made, the risk to the public transportation system would have negative implications for the entire economy. 

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Public transit industry recommends six-year, $100.4 billion federal program

 Washington, D.C. — At its Legislative Conference, the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) released recommendations for authorization of the transportation bill that is set to expire at the end of September. The APTA plan calls on Congress to authorize a $100.4 billion federal transit program over six years, which would grow the current $10.7 billion annual program to $22.2 billion by 2020. In addition, it calls for a number of policy changes in the program that will ensure that the industry provides effective and efficient public transportation.

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Record 10.7 billion trips taken on U.S. public transportation in 2013

 Washington, D.C. — In 2013, Americans took 10.7 billion trips on public transportation, which is the highest annual public transit ridership number in 57 years, according to a report released by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA). This was the eighth year in a row that more than 10 billion trips were taken on public transportation systems nationwide. While vehicle miles traveled on roads (VMT) went up 0.3 percent, public transportation use in 2013 increased by 1.1 percent.

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The Atlantic Cities launches 'The Future of Transportation'

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Atlantic Cities launched “The Future of Transportation,” a nine-month special series of reported dispatches from America’s transportation frontier. Supported by The Rockefeller Foundation and led by Cities editors Sommer Mathis and Eric Jaffe, the series will examine the full extent of America's transportation challenges and explore how U.S. cities are reinventing the way we navigate them. 

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