Top rankings, DART's failure, Perry vs. NY, South vs. North, and moreSome smaller misc items this week:
- Worldwide domination: Rice Alliance named the No. 1 university business incubator!
- Houston is a top STEM city, ranking #6 in the country for STEM jobs, according to Brookings (full report, infographic). The only really equivalent-size major metros to top us were Silicon Valley and DC. HBJ story. Hat tip to Heather.
- The Dallas Morning News on the failure of the DART rail system to build ridership. They give lots of marketing strategies to try and improve ridership, but fail to acknowledge the core problem: for the vast majority of people in their service area, it doesn't go where they need to go. No amount of marketing is going to overcome that. The rail system is focused on downtown Dallas and only a tiny percentage of metro jobs are downtown. Houston has been lucky not making the same mistake by sticking with HOV/HOT buses for long-distance commutes instead of expensive and inflexible light rail lines. And with the right improvements, our HOV/HOT system will be able to effectively serve multiple job centers like uptown, Greenway Plaza, and the Medical Center. More debate on DART vs. METRO over at HAIF.
- Wendell Cox with data on how increasing density doesn't really do much for transit ridership.
- Rick Perry vs. New York, inc. a hard-hitting TV ad for luring businesses to Texas. Hat tip to Joel.
- Joel Kotkin on how the South - led by Texas - is on track to overtake the stagnant North.
"Bluntly put, if the South can finally shake off the worst parts of its cultural baggage, the region’s eventual ascendancy over the North seems more than likely. High-tech entrepreneurs, movie-makers, and bankers appreciate lower taxes and more sensible regulation, just like manufacturers and energy companies. And people generally prefer affordable homes and family-friendly cities. Throwing in a little Southern hospitality, friendliness, and courtesy can’t hurt either."