Friday, April 29, 2011

Water transport to be developed

Water Transport
In its efforts to improve water transport in Kochi, the Corporation is planning to constitute a public limited company. It is also learnt that the Kerala Industrial and Technical Consultancy Organisation Ltd (KITCO), entrusted with the preparation of the detailed project report (DPR), has started the preliminary work in this regard.

As per the Corporation’s annual budget for 2011-12, the company will be on the lines of the Cochin International Airport Ltd (CIAL). “The detailed project report will be in accordance with the study report submitted by the Cities Development Initiative for Asia (CDIA) last year. The CDIA report has suggested some key components to improve the water transport system in the city. KITCO will incorporate these key factors in the CDIA report along with its DPR,” Kochi Corporation Town planning Committee chairman K J Sohan said.

He said that the consultancy will also do a study on the possibilities of setting up a public limited company for the effective management of water transport system in the city. “As per the budget proposal, the plan is to form a company in a public-private-participation mode. The state government and the Kochi Corporation will be the major stakeholders of the company. This will help the civic body to manage the system more effectively,” he said.

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Thursday, April 28, 2011

KC Road Conditions Need Improvement

Road Condition
Transportation experts said the road conditions cost each resident an average of $1,227 because of congestion and poorly maintained roads in the metro.

Officials said it is a crisis because there isn't enough money to fix what needs to be repaired.

Transportation researchers said many bridge improvements and road work has been done, but it's all from old money and it hasn't been enough to keep Kansas City's roadways up to par.

"Despite recent improvements, Missouri still ranks seventh in the nation in the percentage of structurally deficient bridges," said Carolyn Bonifas

In Kansas City, 40 percent of minor highways are in poor condition, and the roads less traveled are even more dangerous, experts said.

"Our report finds Missouri's rural roads are particularly deadly with a traffic fatality rate with more than double that than all other roads in the state," Bonifas said.

In a presentation on Thursday, the Missouri Highway and Transportation Commission said the metro's transportation future is rough with little money coming in.

"We face a transportation funding crisis now," said Stephen Miller of the Missouri Transportation Commission. Not next year. Not five years from now. We face the crisis now."

The Missouri Department of Transportation is operating on half the budget it did close to a decade ago. Officials are hoping for a plan to attack the transportation funding issue in a few months.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Water transport bid may get scrapped

water transport
The city’s dreams of using waterways to travel around may take some more time to realise. In another case of a flip-flop over vital infrastructure projects in the city, the state government is likely to scrap the bid it received from a private company to build the cities first waterway transport system.
The state empowered committee headed by the chief secretary has recommended to the state government that the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) should build the project on its own with the help of funds from the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA).

“The MSRDC has been asked to look into providing necessary infrastructure for water transport on its own. The funds for the project can be provided by the MMRDA,” a senior state government official said, on condition of anonymity. The committee also recommended that once the system is set in place, a private operator can be entrusted to run the project.

The MSRDC in June 2010 had received a single bid by Pratibha Industries to build a water transport system on the western coast.

The financial bid for the project was opened in August 2011 in which Pratibha Industries claimed it would recover the cost of the Rs 1,200-crore project in a period of 29 years and then hand over the project to the government.

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Road investment trumps public transport

Road Transport
A new report shows Australian governments have spent four times more on new roads than on public transport in the past 10 years.

The report from the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) claims governments have given priority to building roads and subsidising drivers rather than investing in public transport networks.

ACF spokeswoman Monica Richter says the amount spent on roads and public transport around the country is the wrong way around.

Ms Richter says two-thirds of funding should be spent on public transport and one-third on roads.

"We just don't have a culture of investment in public transport by our governments in this country and as a result every single promised road project has been delivered. But the promised rail projects have not been delivered," she said.

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Monday, April 25, 2011

Transport outlay: China demand drives road and rail traffic

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The paintshop at General in Erie, Pennsylvania, has recently seen a growing variety of work. Alongside the familiar colours of the large US railway companies, are the blue and yellow of MRS Logistica, the red and white of America Latina Logistica – both Brazilian companies – and the livery of other Latin American train operators.

The new locomotives, equipped with the latest electronics and fuel-saving technology, are one of the most obvious symbols of a surge of investment in Latin America’s railways.

It is helping turn many rail groups from the battered, inefficient wrecks that limped into privatisation over the past 20 years into slick, modern logistics services providers.

ALL, the largest company, expects to invest $650m (£399m) this year alone, excluding the substantial sums going on construction of a 260km line between Alto Araguaia and Rondonopolis in Brazil.

Private-sector investment is also bringing improvements that should help the region’s roads to cope with the demands imposed on them by growing trade volumes.

The challenge in both areas, however, may be to spread the benefits beyond a few favoured pockets, where investments are especially attractive – particularly Brazil, whose large size, strong growth and plentiful trade flows make it especially lucrative.

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Sai disciples plan Puttaparthi trip, face transport problem

Disciples across the city are planning to make a trip down to the ashram in Puttaparthi where spiritual leader Sathya Sai Baba’s mortal remains are kept for two days for paying the last respects. The spiritual guru, who was admitted to Sri Sathya Sai Institute of Higher Medical Sciences (SSSIHMS), in his village of Puttaparthi, Andhra Pradesh on March 28, passed away on Sunday morning following cardio-respiratory failure.

B K Vasudev, district president of Sri Sathya Sai Seva Organisation (SSSSO), Pune, and state level Sevadal in-charge, said, “People across the city are still praying for Swami, and at the same are making plans to travel to Puttaparthi. The information that we have got is that the body will be kept for two days, so that devotees can pay their final respects. I am planning to leave with my family for Puttaparthi.”

Sateesh Seelam, president of Andhra Foundation, Pimpri-Chinchwad, said, “The journey is long. It will take around 15 hours by car. Unfortunately, I will not be able to go.”

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Thursday, April 21, 2011

FAIRSTAR HEAVY TRANSPORT N.V. 2011 Annual General Meeting of Shareholders approves all Resolutions

Fairstar Heavy Transport N.V. (FAIR) held its 2011 AGM in Rotterdam. Just over eighty percent of the company's issued shares were voted either by proxy or in the person of shareholders who attended the meeting. All of the resolutions on the agenda were approved.

The Chairman of the Supervisory Board Frits van Riet, who was re-elected to serve an additional four year term stated, "I would like to thank our shareholders for their participation in the 2011 AGM. 80% of our total shares were represented at the Meeting. Our shareholders are active, well informed and supportive of Fairstar's clearly stated strategic agenda for the future. We believe the Fairstar "Red Box Strategy", focussing on high value, multi voyage energy infrastructure projects will generate significant and consistent returns for our company in the next five years. 2011 is a critical year for our company as we prepare ourselves for Gorgon and a host of other multi-billion dollar energy projects now in the final stage of tender. Our Management Team has done an outstanding job building the foundation for our future. Fairstar is well on the way to establishing itself within the EPC community as the leading provider of safe and secure marine heavy transport services for major onshore and offshore energy projects. The endorsement and support of our shareholders as we grow will be rewarded for many years to come."

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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Authorities on high alert for Easter

Traffic authorities will be on high alert throughout the long Easter weekend, the Road Traffic Management Corporation said on Tuesday.

Acting chief executive officer of the RTMC, Collins Letsoalo, said the authorities would be stationed along the major routes and identified hazardous locations to ensure that traffic rules and regulation were obeyed.

"This on-going, hard hitting traffic enforcement is part of the clean-up for Easter and beyond. We want to make sure that people understand that road safety begins with the road user.

"We cannot continue to accept that people waiting to board public transport have a 50-50 chance of arriving safely," he said.

He said the newly established National Traffic Police Force would join hands with Gauteng traffic authorities to focus on vehicle fitness, public passenger transport vehicles, speeds too high for circumstances, alcohol enforcement and moving violations.

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Monday, April 18, 2011

Namibia: Nam to Get Road Transport Management System

Transport System
THE Ministry of Works and Transport is in process of introducing a self-regulatory framework similar to the South African Road Transport Management System (RTMS), the Ministry's under-secretary in the transport department, George Simataa, has said.

The RTMS was established for co-operative and co-ordinated strategic planning, regulation, facilitation and law-enforcement in respect of road traffic matters by the national, provincial and local spheres of the South African government.

"This idea emanates from a study visit to Kwazulu Natal, South Africa undertaken last year," Simataa said at the launch of the Namibia Logistics Association's (NLA) Driver Development Programme and first awards ceremony on Thursday.

Simaata said the NLA driver development programme would add value and upgrade the standard of driving in the country, as well as increasing professionalism amongst heavy vehicle and long-distance drivers.

"I trust that through the programme, drivers that successfully complete the programme would receive incentives such as salary increases to encourage others to follow suit," he said.

Simataa said his Ministry is supporting the programme for the following reasons: it supports good road-user ethics; promotes law-abiding citizenry; and has the potential to create additional jobs.

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70 000 jobs in fixing roads

"S'hamba Sonke will create 70,000 jobs in the 2010/2011 financial year," said minister Sibusiso Ndebele at Durban's Inkosi Albert Luthuli convention centre.

He was speaking during the launch of the S'hamba Sonke road maintenance programme, attended by thousands of contractors, public transport associations and transport MECs from different provinces.

Ndebele said the total cost of the programme would reach R22 billion by 2014.

"Our collective success starts this financial year with an amount of R6.4 billion, the R7.5 billion next financial year and R8.2 billion in 2014," said Ndebele.

The funding would be ring-fenced for the maintenance of roads, Ndebele said.

KwaZulu-Natal would receive the biggest share and would be followed by the Eastern Cape.

"During the 2011/2012 financial year, KwaZulu-Natal will get R1.2 billion, Eastern Cape R1 billion, Mpumalanga R1 billion, Mpumalanga R1 billion, Limpopo R934 million," Ndebele said.

Gauteng would get R566 million, Free State R447 million, Western Cape R411 million, Northern Cape R308 million and North West R501 million.

Ndebele said it was important to maintain roads because most of South Africa's road network had long exceeded its design life.

He said the issue of road maintenance had successively been raised by his predecessors, saying that turning a blind eye to road maintenance would cost South Africa an arm and a leg.

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Friday, April 15, 2011

Metro Atlanta Transportation Wish List Sent to State

Metro Transportation
The Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) has submitted to the planning director of the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) a "wish list" of transportation projects for the Metro Atlanta region.

This is a critical step in a process that could lead to a regional penny sales tax to fund transportation.

As previously reported by Atlanta Progressive News, in 2010 the Georgia legislature passed--after years of inaction--HB 277, a plan for regional referendums to occur in 2012 on whether to assess a penny sales tax in those regions for transportation projects.

In July 2012, each of the ten special transportation districts will vote on whether to assess a penny sales tax in voters' respective districts.

Each district is responsible for creating its own transportation wish list, in cooperation with GDOT.

Over the last couple months, cities and counties across the region have been developing their wish lists for inclusion in the regional wish list. Many county commissions worked with the city councils in those counties to present unified city-county lists, Jim Jaquish told APN. But that was not the case with Fulton County, where Atlanta and numerous other cities submitted wish lists in addition to that of the county.

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Public transport workers compete in bus Olympics

Public Transport
The eyes of the public transportation world (or the state, at least) turn toward Volusia County this weekend, as Votran's South Daytona headquarters hosts three statewide competitions pitting bus drivers, van drivers, and mechanics against each other.

Volusia County Council member Josh Wagner tried Thursday to maneuver a 35-foot Votran hybrid bus through a modified (meaning easier) version of the road course that bus drivers from across the state will roll through Saturday during the Triple Crown Roadeo. (Thursday was media day for the event.)

The Triple Crown Roadeo is a combination of three statewide competitions -- the Paratransit Roadeo, the Fixed Route Roadeo, and a maintenance, or mechanics competition -- that are normally held in two different locations. Organizers decided to combine the events this year to cut costs.

Employees from 11 urban bus systems and 20 rural paratransit systems will take written tests, driving tests, personal appearance and vehicle maintenance tests, and compete in other events today and Saturday.

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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Transport company filed for permit after fatal crash

Indiana State Police investigators found the trucking company involved in a fatal cash on Interstate 70 filed for an over-sized load permit an hour after the crash. Drivers are required to have the permit with them and to have applied for it before starting any route with an over sized load.

Police said the crash happened when Poindexer Transportation's truck driver was heading east bound on I-70 and the widest part of it's 14'4" load hit a temporary concrete barrier in the construction zone. The force moved the concrete barrier several feet into the oncoming lane. When traffic on that side of the interstate tried to avoid it, six other vehicles collided.

J. Dale Dye, the driver of a small silver Suzuki, was in the second car in the chain reaction on west bound I-70. He died at the scene.

His loved one, Greg Davis, said it's been an unimaginable tragedy. Davis said Dale died senselessly when he learned that truck didn't even have the proper paperwork to be driving that wide of a load through the area.

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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

SM Energy inks gas transportation deal with Energy Transfer

Gas Transportation
Oil and gas company SM Energy Co struck long-term service agreements with Energy Transfer Partners' Texas unit to transport and process gas produced from the Eagle Ford shale field in South Texas.

The deal comes less than a month after Energy Transfer Partners entered into a similar agreements with two producers in Texas. [ID:nL3E7EM350]

ETC Texas Pipeline has committed to transport up to 240,000 million British thermal units per day over a ten-year term, starting 2013.

"This new agreement with ETC provides additional, longer term take-away capacity for our natural gas and natural gas liquids as we continue to ramp up the development of our Eagle Ford shale assets," SM Energy Chief Executive Tony Best said.

Eagle Ford shale, whose current total production is estimated at 80,000 barrels per day, contains crude oil and natural-gas rich in liquids that can be stripped out and sold at a premium.

SM Energy, which did not disclose any financial terms, said the deal was fee based and will not require it to invest any upfront capital.

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Monday, April 11, 2011

Dubai Chamber participates in 59th UITP transport exhibition

The seminar, which outlined the necessary steps to setting-up a business and examined the Chamber's role in supporting companies and promoting Dubai as an international business hub, was opened by H.E. Hisham Al Shirawi, Second Vice-Chairman, Dubai Chamber of Commerce & Industry.

In his welcoming speech, H.E Al Shirawi said that Dubai was a solid choice for businesses due to its extensive infrastructure, modern banking system as well as free zones, which allow for 100% foreign ownership and tax free earnings.

He highlighted the benefits that the city's growing public transport system is giving to the business community by allowing for ease of movement across the Emirate. He also gave a special mention to the success of Dubai Metro and congratulated the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) on their hard work to bring this project to fruition.

He said the appetite for doing business in Dubai was strong and that the Chamber had seen its new members increase by 11% in January and 8% in February, compared to the corresponding month in 2010.

The Chamber also had a stand during the exhibition that provided attendees with information about the Chamber's services and the benefits of being a member.

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Friday, April 08, 2011

Charities doubt green case for high-speed rail

High speed rail
The Government’s proposals for a high speed rail network will do little to reduce UK carbon emissions unless the plans are set out as part of a comprehensive, long term transport strategy for the UK, according to a group of a national charities.

A coalition of charities and lobby groups including Friends of the Earth and Civic Voice has published a charter setting out how the Government should proceed with plans for the HS2 rail network.

The charter claims that, at present, the Government’s HS2 proposals are "not part of any comprehensive long term transport strategy or nationally agreed priorities", while, in contrast, "all the other countries developing high speed rail are doing so within a national transport framework".

In particular, the charter says, this strategy should set out how transport schemes can help reduce rising carbon emissions. The document says: "High speed rail needs to be planned and justified as an element of a sustainable, near zero-carbon transport system."

Andy Atkins, executive director of Friends of the Earth said: "Carbon emissions from UK transport must be urgently cut – but the current HS2 proposals will do little, if anything, to help. The majority of planned HS2 journeys are relatively short, so the Government’s top priority should be to cut emissions from these trips. This means action to encourage greener travel and measures to reduce the need to travel for work or essential services."

And Doug Parr, policy director of Greenpeace UK, said: "Tackling transport emissions means an increase in rail capacity. High speed rail can only help if it’s in a proper policy framework which ensures people move from car and plane onto the train."

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Thursday, April 07, 2011

SA to spend billions on transport

Transport infrastructure development over the next few years is set to radically change the way South Africans travel, thanks to a multi-billion rand boost from the government.

Amounting to R66-billion over the next year, and rising to R80-billion by 2013/14, the improvements are set to also create numerous jobs and tourism opportunities.

The improvements will be spread across the country, with both urban and rural parts set to benefit. This comes as current transport infrastructure developments have been recognised as being world-class quality.

"Given the deep-seated historical legacy of apartheid-inspired geographical marginalisation of the majority of South Africans, and decades of underinvestment in public transport, government is going all out to ensure safe, efficient, reliable and affordable public transport," Transport Sibusiso Ndebele said on Wednesday.


"Over the past few years, a major capital injection into transport-related infrastructure and operations has begun to produce some important results."

The second report card on infrastructure released yesterday by the South African Association of Civil Engineering states that the country's best performing infrastructure was its aviation infrastructure, which was awarded the report's only "A".

According to the report, South Africa's national road network was "good to excellent", with the SA National Roads Agency (Sanral), Airports Company South Africa (Acsa) and the National Ports Authority performing exceptionally well.

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Tuesday, April 05, 2011

U.S. transport agency to probe discount bus safety

The National Transportation Safety Board will conduct a review of the safety system governing the discount tour bus industry in the wake of last month's deadly Bronx bus crash that killed 15 passengers, authorities announced on Sunday.

New York Senator Charles Schumer and Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez compared the bus review, expected to take six months, to one that resulted in mandatory airline safety changes after the 2009 crash of a commuter plane in Buffalo killed all 49 passengers and crew aboard.

"A broad-based investigation into the discount tour bus industry will send a wake-up call that the status quo is simply not acceptable," said Schumer, who with Velazquez requested the review after the March 12 fatal crash of a bus returning to Chinatown from a Connecticut casino.

"These passengers did not have to die in vain. (The NTSB review) will no doubt lead to greater safety standards for the thousands of passengers who use these buses every week," the Democratic senator said in a statement.

Just days after the New York crash, another Chinatown bus crashed on the New Jersey Turnpike en route to Philadelphia, killing the driver and a passenger.

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Monday, April 04, 2011

Transport smartcard launched in Auckland

Transport smartcard
Bus users in Auckland will soon be able to take advantage of a new smartcard for public transport.

Auckland Transport today announced the introduction of the card as part of a phased lead-in to the full introduction of the region's first fully integrated ticketing system next year.

The launch of the "hop-on and hop-off" (Hop) smartcard follows earlier announcements on the development of an integrated system and a participation agreement between Auckland Transport, Snapper and NZ Bus on working with the new central system.

The Hop smartcard replaces Go Rider cards and will be rolled out over coming months.

The card will simplify how people pay for and use public transport and will make boarding faster and easier, Auckland Transport chief executive David Warburton said.

It will also be rolled out for use on NZ Bus services.

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