RTA lists worthy projects; let's be sure they're well designed

By Stephen Crim, The Lens contributing opinion writer |

With applications due at the end of the month for TIGER III grants for transportation infrastructure, the federal government will soon be playing Santa Claus to transit agencies around the nation. As in the past, the New Orleans Regional Transit Authority has put together a wish list.

Filled-in canal drives up cost of planned Loyola Avenue streetcar extension

By Ariella Cohen, The Lens staff writer |

A bridge running over a buried canal beneath a streetcar track — the setup sounds like a backdrop for the post-industrial romance of an Arcade Fire video. On Loyola Avenue in the Central Business District, however, the infrastructure sandwich will soon be a very expensive reality – and one that has raised the price of putting a streetcar line on the corridor by several million dollars, according to engineers working on the track with the New Orleans Regional Transit Authority.

Pedicab success pivots on City Council opting for merit selection

By Alan Williams, The Lens contributing opinion writer |

Finally, New Orleans has joined the ranks of cities that permit pedal-powered cabs to carry residents and visitors around town. Soon, New Orleanians and tourists alike will be able to cruise Magazine Street, roll to the Superdome for a Saints game, or get from a downtown hotel to a downriver restaurant without setting foot in an automobile.