New and Expanded Bikeshare Stations Announced: The District Department of Transportation announced new and expanded station locations for its popular Capital Bikeshare program. The program, which is just 10 months old, will be expanding its capacity by 22 percent. You can view a full list of the new station locations here.
Metro Seat Testing Begins: Kytja Weir at the Washington Examiner reports that Metro has begun testing of its new 7000-series rail cars that each have 62 or 64 seats—fewer seats than most of the rail cars currently in use by Metro. Metro held a testing session on the new cars yesterday evening at Metro Center. An earlier testing was canceled because it was too well publicized. "Turns out the researchers wanted a random sample of riders, not just the committed transit fans," Weir writes.
MLK Jr. Memorial Previewed: Nearly 1,000 members of the black Catholic joint coference previewed the new national memorial for the iconic Civil Rights activist Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Some of those that toured the memorial today attended some of King's historical speeches as children, WJLA reports. The memorial will open next month on August 28; it will be located on the Tidal Basin, midway between the Lincoln and Jefferson memorials.
Metro Adds Rapid Bus Line: Metro will start a new 7M bus line on August 8 that will run from the Pentagon to the Mark Center office complex in Alexandria. The route is designed to reduce gridlock and accommodate the more than 6,000 government workers who transfer there next month. Joseph Webster at the Washington Times reports that Defense Department will pay for workers who show their IDs on all 7M trips.
DC Mayor Names New Taxi Commissioner: DC Mayor Vincent Gray named a new taxi commissioner, Ron Linton, who has a background in public in administration. The new commissioner will be taking over for Leon Swain, who Gray fired earlier this year and was crucial in reporting a bribery scheme to the FBI in 2009. Linton may not necessarily be popular with the taxi drivers, who have been both donors to Gray's mayoral campaign and have been seeking higher fares. Linton hasn't committed to raising fares; Freeman Klopott at the Examiner quoted him saying, "I will be just as concerned about the elderly and others who need [taxis] as I will about the drivers who want a wage increase."
Briefly Noted: Lydia DePillis has a map of the city marked up by the number of foreclosures on schoolchildren. . . . IKEA's US plant workers, located in Southern Virginia, voted yesterday to unionize.