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HIDDEN TRANSPORTATION SAFETY SOLUTION: PUBLIC TRANSIT
-> A new American Public Transportation Association study shows that a person can reduce the chance of being in a crash by more than 90 percent simply by taking public transit instead of commuting by car. (The Hidden Transportation Safety Solution: Public Transportation: http://bit.ly/2d54b9m) Traveling by public transportation is ten times safer per mile than traveling by auto. The authors reveal that transit-oriented communities are five times safer because they have about a fifth the per capita traffic casualty rate (fatalities and injuries) as automobile-oriented communities. This means public transit cuts a community’s crash risk in half even for those who do not use public transit. Public transportation communities spur compact development, which reduces auto miles traveled and produces safer speeds.

Cities that average more than 50 annual transit trips per capita have about half the average traffic fatality rates as cities where residents average fewer than 20 annual trips. Since Americans average about 1,350 annual trips on all modes, this increase from less than 20 to more than 50 annual transit trips represents a small increase in transit mode share, from about 1.5 percent up to about 4 percent. That equates to an increase in transit mode share of less than 3 trips a month per person. http://bit.ly/2cm4tw9

PHYSICAL INACTIVITY AMONG PEOPLE 50+
-> The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention analyzed data on adults aged ?50 years from the 2014 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). They found approximately 28% of adults aged ?50 years are inactive and are missing the opportunity to improve their health through physical activity. They concluded communities can be designed and enhanced to make it safer and easier for people of all ages and abilities to be physically active. Physical Inactivity Among Adults Aged 50 Years and Older — United States, 2014: http://bit.ly/2cUhDMv

FITNESS APP DATA ACCURACY IN COUNTING PED & BIKE COMMUTERS
-> The data collected by the fitness app Strava (http://bit.ly/1WNyrcp) turns out to be a pretty accurate way to get a handle on how many people commute on foot or by bike. Fitness apps like Strava collect data about how people move around using GPS, which is less subjective. Some cities are already using its data aggregation and analysis spinoff, Strava Metro (http://bit.ly/2cQzt4B), for city planning. But fitness apps have their own problems — since the people who use them probably aren’t all that representative of the broader population. To double-check Strava’s tracking data, scientists with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention compared it with census data in four US cities: Austin, Denver, Nashville, and San Francisco. (http://bit.ly/2diAWU3) The Strava data tracked pretty closely with what the surveys reported. http://bit.ly/2cnZkUf

ECONOMIC COMPARISON: WALMART VS DOWNTOWN MIXED-USE BUILDING
-> A recent CNU article reports economic indicators economic analyst Joe Minicozzi used to compare a Walmart in Asheville, NC, to a downtown mixed-use building in the same city. Walmart consumed 34 acres; and on a per acre basis paid $6,500 in property taxes and $47,500 in city retail taxes, had zero residents and provided 5.9 jobs. A downtown mixed use building consumed 0.2 acres, paid $634,000 in property taxes and $83,600, had 90 residents, and 73.7 jobs. http://bit.ly/2cQRLRL

METHOD PINPOINTS ‘HOT SPOTS’ FOR BUS EMISSIONS
-> The University of Minnesota reports that researchers have developed a way to identify the exact location of "hot spots" for air pollutants created by transit buses—work that could be used to create new strategies for addressing emission hot spots in the future. (Lagrangian Hotspots of In-Use NOX Emissions from Transit Buses: http://bit.ly/2dgApiD) Researchers discovered that buses driving their routes often emit NOX emissions at much higher levels than during certification testing, particularly routes with frequent stops. On selected routes, bus stops resulted in 3.3 times the route-averaged NOX emissions. Increased NOX emissions were most likely to occur at bus stops, cold starts, inclines, and accelerations. http://bit.ly/2dj40e9