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Once Around the Web

(Monday – Friday SDOT sends out a compilation of local and national transportation news links. If you’d like to subscribe (or unsubscribe) to the list, just send an email to and I’ll take care of it for you. )

Here’s a sampling of some of the more interesting transportation news stories out there this week:

Are those trees holding their breath or what?

Did you know that next month 56 trees along the Burke-Gillman Trail and inWestlake Park will be turning bright blue?

It’s all part of a new Arts4Culture temporary art project. Starting April 2, volunteers will paint the trees with a water-based, environmentally safe pigment which will turn them a bright, ultramarine color. The trees willgradually fade back to their natural color.

The project was created and conceived by Australian artist Konstantin Dimopoulos and is designed to bring awareness and discussion about global deforestation. Trees are Earth’s lungs and yet each year we lose some 32 million acres of old growth forests. In nature, color is used both as a means of protection and as a mechanism to attract. The Blue Trees is an attempt to elicit a similar response from viewers and inspire conversation and action around deforestation issues.

Find out more about the project and how to volunteer here.

View the artist’s website here.


75 years later, the search for Amelia Earhart resumes

The mystery of Amelia Earhart has kept her alive in our collective imagination ever since she and co-pilot Fred Noonan vanished in 1937. Did she crash? Was she a spy? Did she use the disappearance to assume another identity? Was it an accident or something more nefarious? We may never know but then again…

This week, Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, joined historians, scientists and salvagers from The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR) to reopen the search for Earhart’s Lockheed Electra. Using a newly re-enhanced photo, taken in the months after she disappeared, and advised by Titanic discoverer Dr. Robert Ballard, researchers are planning a 10 day mission, funded by private investors, to see if they can find Earhart’s long-lost plane. And maybe some answers.

“Women, like men, should try to do the impossible. And when they fail, their failure should be a challenge to others.— Amelia Earhart


Sweet! This U.K. Bus Shelter Dispenses Free Cake!

The future is here folks and it comes bearing dessert. As advertising gets more creative and competitive, and technology gets cheaper and more advanced, and government budgets get tighter and tighter, we might expect more and more things like this innovative advertising installation in the public realm. The nineteen special bus shelters around London are loaded with 500 individually wrapped cakes and dole out the treats when the button is pressed. There’s also a scent spray mechanism in case you just want to smell the cake and not eat it. (No more bus shelter cake for me, mate! I’m bloody stuffed already. But oh, it smells lovely dunnit?)

The ads are designed to encourage busy people to eat cake on the go. Maybe that’s why we don’t have anything like this in America yet. We’re already tops at eating on the run.