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You’re Stuck? There’s An App for That

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

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Apps already flag road and transit glitches, but a new version helps aggravated commuters act on their beef, in the form of an instant note to the appropriate elected official.

And get this: The app comes from elected officials.

The new, free mobile app, called "I'm Stuck," allows commuters and airline passengers to immediately email their U.S. Representative or Senator when travel headaches and delays "directly affects the daily experience of Americans trying to get around their communities."

I'm Stuck App

The I'm Stuck app user can send a personalized message to elected officials, or use one already provided, such as this one for the traffic jam scenario.

The app was created by Building America's Future, a bipartisan coalition of elected officials dedicated to bringing about a new era of U.S. investment in infrastructure. The coalition was founded and is co-chaired by Michal R. Bloomberg, mayor of New York City; Edward G. Rendell, former governor of Pennsylvania; and Arnold Schwarzenegger, former governor of California.

I'm Stuck was downloaded more than 10,000 times in its first week, developers said Tuesday (Aug. 6).

Vent While You Wait

"Whether your local highway doesn't have enough lanes to handle all the traffic or your local airport doesn't have the capacity to deal with all of its flights, this is the app to ensure your voice will be heard," according to Building America's Future.

The I'm Stuck app gives users the option to select the mode of transportation that is frustrating them at the moment, be it traffic, overcrowded transit, or a subway, bus, tarmac, or train delay. Then the user can write a personal message, as well as a photo if desired, and send it off to the appropriate U.S. House member as well as the state's two U.S. senators, based on the registration information provided by the user.

If the user is traveling outside his or her home area, the app will use geolocation to figure out the correct elected officials to send the message to.

Building America's Future
Peter Grisby / Governor Schwarzenegger's Office

NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former Govs. Ed Rendell (PA) and Arnold Schwarzenegger (CA) co-chair Building America's Future. Rendell said he hopes elected officials are flooded with I'm Stuck emails, pushing them to get their "rear ends in gear and spend money on infrastructure."

"Usually commuters think traffic is like weather—it is something that happens to them and they have no control over it," Rendell said in a statement.

"The policies we put in place, or the lack of a coherent long-term infrastructure plan, directly impacts the daily experience of Americans trying to get around their communities. This app gives commuters and passengers a tool to voice their frustrations to Congress," said Rendell.

Rendell told The Chicago Tribune that he hopes a flood of I'm Stuck emails will give elected officials "a permission slip" to spend taxpayer dollars on updating infrastructure.

"...we have to create enough pressure outside the Beltway to tell Congress, 'You have waited too long [to fund infrastructure], we are losing global competitiveness and our quality of life suffers. Get your rear ends in gear and spend money on infrastructure," Rendell told the Tribune.

The I'm Stuck app is available for free on Android and Apple devices.

   

Tagged categories: Bridges; Government; Information technology; Infrastructure; Rail; Roads/Highways; Traffic control

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