Once upon a time I ran a news site, now I just have opinions on the news. 

Good morning, RVA: Bikeshare on Tuesday, permitting woes, and George Mason volunteers

Good morning, RVA! It's 78 °F, and along with cooler temperatures (highs in the upper 80s), you should keep a lookout for thunderstorms later this afternoon and into evening.

Water cooler

Here it is! An official bike share announcement from the City! Richmond’s bike share system will open this coming Tuesday, August 29th, and you can already sign up for an annual membership over on rvabikes.com. That’ll cost you $96, which will be “worth it” if you use the system at least once a week; otherwise, single rides cost $1.75 with weekly and monthly membership options also available. We’ll have 20 stations scattered across mostly downtown (but with a station each in Scott’s Addition and Church Hill) and 220 bikes. Funding already exists to double both of those numbers. With any luck we can expand the footprint of the system into some of the surrounding residential neighborhoods (VUU!), especially lower-income areas where folks don’t necessarily own a car. In fact, bike share equity is a big topic of conversation across the nation. And finally, good news from Mark Robinson at the RTD: Three stations will fill the gaping coverage hole surrounding VCU once a useage agreement gets worked out with the University—theoretically sometime this fall.

This deep dive in BizSense by Jonathan Spiers about the permitting process at City Hall will bum you out, especially if you’re a developer trying to make Richmond a denser place or a restaurateur trying to open up a new spot. As Richmond grows, the demands on the the Department of Planning and Development Review will only increase, so it is well past time to get this sorted out. Citizens should not need to reach out to their Councilperson to move a permit forward!

Since the School Board’s decision to allow students to return to George Mason Elementary School for the 2017–18 school year, volunteers have stepped up to do what they can to beautify the space. Interim Superintendent Kranz says that the real improvements—which include fixes to a boiler that smelled of natural gas and bathroom renovations—will be in place before the start of the school year on September 5th. I sure hope so.

Check out this NYT photo feature titled, “16 Years of War in Afghanistan, in Picture.”

You can also read the Washington Post’s take on Trump’s campaign rally last night. If reading it heightens your anxiety and fills you with existential dread, maybe just watch this video instead. It made me laugh in a “Haha...ha...😕” kind of way.


  • Squirrels continued their crushings of Erie with a 10-4 victory. That series wraps up tonight at 7:05 PM.
  • Nats nipped Houston, 4-3, and will try to do the same again tonight at 8:10 PM.

This morning's longread

How and why road-pricing will happen

The Economist tackles (just one of) the subsidies we give drivers!

Clearing this up is possible. And once motorists have become used to the idea of paying for the road space they take up, rates could be tweaked to account for the noise, pollution and the risk of collisions in each location. For the time being governments, national and metropolitan, are proceeding cautiously. But as fuel-tax revenues dry up, that is sure to change.

Good morning, RVA: Welcome back, a bizarre saga, and the Public Art Master Plan

Good morning, RVA: Compact is go!, Arthur Ashe, and eclipse pics