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August 30, 2016
USDOT forum
PRT is under New Ideas in the USDOT's National Online Dialogue on FTA's 5-Year Strategic Plan for Research

August 26, 2016
Ed Anderson spoke to Rotary
Leading PRT thinker addressed group in Princeton, MN

August 2, 2016
Bangalore
BBMP local infrastructure administration follows Gurgaon, has interest in building a pod network, despite naysayer. 'Metrino' may be becoming synonymous with PRT in India .

August 1, 2016
Celebrating Ten Years
Schoolbus entrepreneur Michael Tornabe is excited about PRT, particularly Jpods, as described in a June press release (1, 2) concerning a plan to raise what sounds like local private funds for Jpods applications. Jpods's partnership with Switzerland's Festel Capital is mentioned prominently -- for legitimacy? To lend an international air? Leaving aside the question of the feasibility/desirability of private transit companies, the NewsCenter feels compelled to point out that the Jpods-Festel arrangement was inked in 2006 (see 12/28/2006 here), and the succeeding decade is an eternity in venture capital terms. We sought out Dr. Gunter Festel himself for a comment. Festel told us that, although his arrangement with Jpods has not officially ended, he has had no communication with Jpods or its founder Bill James since 2008.
    • More recent Tornabe press release replaces Jpods with skyTran

July 12, 2016
Greenville
Modutram and 2getthere submit proposals to Greenville-Spartanburg Airport.
Airport commission's move characterized as putting on the brakes over cost
Taxi 2000 bid exceeded budget. Visits to Modutram and Masdar planned; next step would be soliciting construction bids.

July 11, 2016
X
Podcar City 10 Conference announced for Antwerp, Sept. 19-21.

July 10, 2016
Seoul area
South Korea: a 5.5 km PRT network is being considered in Gwacheon ('Elgin'), which boasts a number of Seoul cultural and tourist attractions, as well as a government administrative center.

June 29, 2016
skyTran to Abu Dhabi
skyTran signs deal for system on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi

June 24, 2016
India - Another delay
Now the Gurgaon-Delhi pod project could be delayed because the national highway agency forgot to get permission from the local municipal government corporation, the Times Of India reports.

June 13, 2016
Inventing Tomorrowland
Washington Post article on the USDOT Smart City Challenge; table at bottom links to all the submissions, including Greenville SC (ATN) and Raleigh NC (EcoPRT).

June 10, 2016
Gurgaon inching
India - Pod taxi project inching towards reality. National highway agency receives 4 qualification bids: Metrino, "Sky Dran" (sic), Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services Ltd. and Neel Metal Products Ltd. The agency will request RFPs from these entities.

June 1, 2016
Pods in schools
Ultra pods were focus of 3 month STEM education program in Heathrow-area schools

May 26, 2016
Rishon Movement
Mayor Dov Tzur of Rishon LeTsiyon (see 2/18 and 2/24) to visit SkyCube in Suncheon, this article in Korean seems to say.

May 25, 2016
EcoPRT breakthrough?
Marshall Brain building the second-generation prototype at NC State.

May 22, 2016
Fast Track
India: Gurgaon pod taxi project put on fast track Whatever that means. We have to ask -- When's the tender? There has to be one, right? -Ed.

May 14, 2016
New Pod
"Podcar: Local Engineer Develops New Transit System" (Everett, MA). Publicity for Transit X and developer Mike Stanley. Article presents Transit X as new concept, does not mention it is part of the wider field of PRT.

May 13, 2016
Going Clearwater
Florida: "Scientology's Fort Harrison hotel hosts mass transit pitch" Note to skyTran: Isn't PRT already controversial enough?
Council greenlights further study

May 4, 2016
Fairwood explains pod probs
Interview with Fairwood Group vice-manager Ranbir Saran Das - slow deployment of PRT due to churn in government administrations.

April 22, 2016
Joint Venture
2getthere and Singapore partner to bring driverless transit to Asia
Launch presser.
Dutch firm in SMRT deal may have money woes. Somebody got the FUD memo. -Ed.
SMRT and 2getthere deny speculation

April 21, 2016
skyTran photo
This is the skyTran demonstration system on the IAI campus at Ben Gurion airport, billed as the "ugly duckling."
+
The guideway is inside a cage testbed. skyTran says a 'look-like' version (i.e. elevated on pylons) is now under construction.

April 17, 2016
Bids in SC
Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport is soliciting bids for a pod car transit system
Airport commission seeks proposals

April 2, 2016
Infrastructure
What Happens When a City Is Run by Private Industry? (Gurgaon) Transit pod project estimated cost is $128M.

March 15, 2016
Further Garriott
Richard Garriott pitches 'Personal Rapid Transit' at SXSW
• KXAN (NBC Austin): Could pods help Austin?
Commute in a Speedy, Private, Storm Trooper Helmet
London is testing the self-driving pods some Austinites crave

March 9, 2016
Metrino moves forward
Delhi-area transport plans include Metrino pod pilot. A top official with Metrino confirms the company's involvement to the NewsCenter. -Ed.

Bid invitation in April - 'skyrail' (gondolas) also in contention.

Work could begin June 1

March 9, 2016
Trail Not So Temporary?
Neighbors, nature lovers, walkers want brakes on transit in Cross-Kirkland Corridor (KUOW-FM)

March 6, 2016
Mountain View
Feb. 17: Council puts pod cars back in the mix. Silicon Valley city commits $200,000 for study. Maybe calling it AGT and 'driverless people-movers' can overcome resistance to PRT.

February 24, 2016
Road Not Taken

The Verge
Another sprawling recounting of the history of PRT development, this time by Adi Robertson in The Verge, with photo essay.
• Adi Robertson discusses PRT on the What's Tech podcast (17:11).

February 24, 2016
A Tale Of Two Cubes, II
Cold Call?
©MMXVI The PRT NewsCenter
 photo 1000Compound800x450_zpsfekelwqb.jpg
Source: Rishon LeTsiyon video

The Municipality of Rishon LeTsiyon is interested in possibly building a PRT system, but has not made any agreements to do so. This is contrary to the Google Translate interpretation of the article in Ynet (see 2/18/2016). The city's Foreign Relations Director Annette Ben-Shahar said the city's meetings with Sky Cube representatives were preliminary. She confirmed the proposed system would involve 3-5km of track, and clarified the city investment would be $60-100m. The name of the commercial/housing development is Thousand Compound.
     Spokesman Yanic Ohana said Sky Cube is the only PRT group the Municipality has talked to so far. "We [are] only at the beginning of the process," he said. Considering the project is also near 3 planned light rail lines, it's conceivable Rishon LeTsiyon thought it had its transit bases covered before Sky Cube came calling. -Ed.

February 18, 2016
A Tale Of Two Cubes
Progress & Problems For S. Korea PRT System:
In Suncheon: Report of deficit crisis involving the Sky Cube debut system, located at the site of the 2014 Garden Expo. According to Google Translate, there was a 2 year deficit of KRW100 billion ($81m); operation may be, or already has been, discontinued. Ridership may be low because a 1-1.2km walk is required to reach the PRT. Some say the route must be extended 1.2km to the Expo entrance.
In Israel: The City of Rishon LeZion (or LeTsiyon), south of Tel Aviv, announces 60m deal with Sky Cube for a 'horizonal elevator electric train' serving the Israel Railways station and a new commercial/housing development near the junction of Highways 20 and 431. The city is interested in a 3-5km system; "construction work is expected to begin within a year" and opening in 1½-2 years. Expect a Sky Cube-skyTran turf war?

February 15, 2016
Smart City
Raleigh, NC one of 77 applicants for USDOT grant. Smart City Challenge: one $40m grant to be awarded to a city with "bold, data-driven ideas to improve lives by making transportation safer, easier, and more reliable."
No NC cities make the cut

February 14, 2016
"Outdated"
Masdar professor: "Our driverless car system [PRT] is pretty outdated now"; with MIT is planning "more modern" DL system.

February 13, 2016
WVU
Phase 3 of PRT upgrade would be new, lighter vehicles

February 13, 2016
India
Jaipur OKs $200m budget which includes pod transit

February 2, 2016
Reworked Smart City Plan
Dehradun, Uttarakhand - India: Govt to include PRTS in reworked smart city plan. Earlier version "ignored the needs of people living within the limits of the Municipal Corporation".

January 28, 2016
Pods On Streets
BBC: "London's first driverless cars revealed," and it's Ultra, modified for street use. The test will take place in the Greenwich Peninsula area (site of O2 Arena) starting in July, as part of Gateway -- 'Greenwich Automated Transport Environment.' The report makes it clear that while the Heathrow Pod's look is familiar (and perhaps comforting choice of "the design we have now"), all-new software, navigation and sensors will be used.
  •ABC News bulletin
  •Video: Slo-mo test run (May 2016)

January 26, 2016
2gt investor
"Partner uit Emiraten investeert in 2getthere." Emirates-based engineering firm UTS buys undisclosed stake in 2getthere, maker/operator of the Masdar PRT.

January 26, 2016
Editor's Blog
Back And Forth With skyTran. "One of the things we miss about the old days of covering personal rapid transit is the way everything used to be out in the open..."

January 25, 2016
Jaipur pods
Times of India: "Jaipur Metro riders may glide to railway station in podcar"; shuttle between Metro station and rail station. Presentation by JPods-affilitated Actis Infrastructure -- which should not be confused with Actis Capital, formerly part of the UK Commonwealth Development Corporation.

January 20, 2016
Morgantown
West Virginia: "PRT continues modernization process"

January 19, 2016
Greenway opinion
Transit in Rose Kennedy Greenway should be elegant and light (Boston Herald)

January 12, 2016
DL To Dominate
"Driverless Transit to Dominate in 2040," driverless transit advocates say.

January 8, 2016
Masdar - 2getthere goes on
Masdar extends Dutch company's contract. 2getthere's Robbert Lohmann tells NewsCenter the extension is for one year.

December 22, 2015
Confused Bloomberg
Business news service runs article about liability and driverless cars with photo of Masdar PRT. A PRT podcar is driverless but not a 'driverless car.' PRT is grade separated, running on guideways or other surface where traffic isn't allowed, and only stops at designated stations.

December 10, 2015
Masdar PRT turns 5
"Masdar City PRT sets record highs in fifth year." 1.6 million riders since 2010.

November 26, 2015
Fortune
SkyTran "will soon be reality"

November 26, 2015
Paisley-Glasgow Airport link still possible
Glasgow-area 'city deal' intergovernmental group exploring rail link. The options are trains on existing rails and new tram tracks, and intermodal train-PRT.
Political battle over project between the cities (Labour) and Scottish government (SNP).
2014 article
Transport writer/mayoral candidate wants 3rd option, a heavy rail line part of national network. 11-30-2015
Heavy monorail rejected, planners stick with pod and train-tram options. 5-31-2016

November 24, 2015
Podcar
Video: "California technologists are developing the Podcar" (China Central TV)

November 22, 2015
Skyweb for Skyway?
Jacksonville, Florida: "On demand pods an option to replace dated Skyway." Taxi 2000 says its PRT system can fit inside "failed" peoplemover's infrastructure envelope.

November 15, 2015
Podcar gathering wrapup
"Podcar proponents tout futuristic transit vision". Decade-old debunked anti-PRT propaganda lives on in the comments section

November 12, 2015
Garriott
"PRT can be a big part of the solution" in Austin

November 6, 2015
Podcar City 9
"Engineers flock to Mountain View to discuss future of podcars." Conferees see youth movement.

October 29, 2015
Can Garriott pull it off?
Garriott begins public campaign to win Austin's support for pods
• 5 year old plan for network centered on Univ. Of Texas.
• Could be an entirely private venture
• Plan being examined by UT's IC2 Institute.

October 29, 2015
Cardiff Central Square Project
Foster+Partners, strangely, still talking up the pre-contraction version of Masdar PRT

October 27, 2015
9th Podcar City Conference
News release: International Podcar City Conference Returns to Silicon Valley Nov 4-6 in Mountain View, CA

October 27, 2015
Ithaca
'Anarchist' council candidate is running against cars

October 27, 2015
One Step Closer
Washington Post: First photos (ever) of physical skyTran components. "Sanders said that the system is the best fit for any sprawling city that lacks a subway"

+     +
WaPo/skyTran
(L) What appears to be framework for a station, guideway covers in foreground; (R) drive unit wheels for low speed and at rest.

SkyTran lifts air taxis a step closer to reality

• Times Of Israel: Demo won't happen until "early 2016".

October 16, 2015
Multimodal report
India transport planning agency NATPAC recommends PRT, light rail and BRT in Thiruvananthapuram section of long range sustainable mobility plan.

October 13, 2015
India TOD
Apartments project on route of proposed PRT, site called "one of the most sought-after locations in the state capital," Dehradun.
• "Personalised Rapid Transit system" Project information memorandum (Aug. 2015)
Feb. 2015 archive

October 8, 2015
Boston
Councilman announces "unnamed private company was amenable" to build PRT in the Rose Kennedy Greenway. Of course, it is JPods.

September 28, 2015
skyTran → Charm City?
Press release: "skyTran is Considering Baltimore for its First US Assembly Plant."

September 26, 2015
Groundswell
"A groundswell for high-riding pods." Boston Globe introduces tiny Massachusetts-based TransitX.

September 24, 2015
Taxi 2000 on NPR
Why Nonstop Travel In Personal Pods Has Yet To Take Off (Morning Edition).
Correspondent Joe Palca visits Taxi 2000 offices, interviews Mike Lester and Ken Halverson, and rides the redcar prototype.
NPR gif

There's been some buzz about this line from the story (quoting former MnDOT Commissioner Thomas K. Sorel, misspelled Sorrel by NPR):
"the state considered PRT, but there was stiff opposition from backers of buses and light rail, and nothing was ever built." There's nothing too complicated about this. Most likely it means that buses and light rail had revenue streams, and the agencies and citizen groups that helped get those streams acted to protect them. It's not unfair, it's not a conspiracy. It's politics. -Editor

September 23, 2015
Morgantown PRT
"This university transit system is a 1970's vision of the future" (Atlas Obscura)

September 17, 2015
Futran
Futran transport system with operating Nutran vehicle:

A project of Milotek, a South African mining company. Designed for "bulk commodities" movement, but company also hopes to create version for people and goods.

September 17, 2015
2getthere and Taiwan
2getthere extends Taiwan partnership for 2 years. Focus is on PRT/GRT as rail feeders.

September 14, 2015
Creation of "CALII" Announced
Formation of California Infrastructure Institute announced in Advanced Transit Association post (by longtime PRT advocate Catherine Burke, emerita professor of USC's Price School of Public Policy) on August 28. CALII was actually incorporated April 28, 2014 and has a legal address in a Del Mar subdivision.

CALII has an interesting and much-needed set of objectives: to create a proving ground where hardware and software can be independently tested; provide professional training; create and disseminate regulatory standards; collect and assess data on economic and environmental impacts. This could be the vetting authority we have called for earlier (
A great day in Kirkland - but..., Editor's Blog, 2/9/2014)

September 10, 2015
Spijkstaal acquired
EV specialist Spijkstaal, a supplier on the Masdar PRT system as well as the Rivium ParkShuttle, is acquired by Peinemann Holdings for an undisclosed amount after declaring bankruptcy in August.

September 8, 2015
Editor's Blog: MISTER-MISTER
Ollie Mikosza says a well-connected academic stole his PRT design. Guess who's winning

We began corresponding with Olgierd "Ollie" Mikosza in 2006, shortly after "MISTER" (Metropolitan Individual System of Transportation on an Elevated Rail), his suspended (vehicle below the guideway) personal rapid transit concept, first came on the scene. With Heathrow Pods and the Masdar City PRT still four years off, Mikosza exuded confidence and optimism that his design would be the one to break through... Keep reading

September 2, 2015
Google CEO takes skyTran stake
Eric Schmidt invests in skyTran via his venture capital fund

skyTran co-founder Bhatnagar is from India Institutes Of Technology
SkyTran SEC filing reports 100% of offering is $2.5 million from 1 investor

September 1, 2015
Northern Virginia
The Jpods tour comes to the Washington DC region, complete with anti-Federal government rhetoric. Hopes to step into vacuum left by cancellation of streetcar plan.

Plan B is for Buses
Commuter says of PRT, "Are they real? They look like Disneyland", as though Disneyland isn't real.

Greater Greater Washington blog and extensive comments. Author kinda-sorta understands PRT, but not network capacity or that point-to-point really means station-to-station. Corollary to Godwin's Law should be The longer a comment thread on elevated transit goes on, the likelihood increases that someone will cite The Simpsons monorail episode, ending all serious discussion.



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Where we look at the world of sustainability beyond PRT & podcars. Here you'll find our interest in the environment (especially Puget Sound protection & restoration), city planning and clean energy. We also take our views on near-term transit planning for a ride on urban streetcars.


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