40th Street Bridge, to be completed in December 2012

The Mayor's Office of Transportation and Utilities—otherwise known as MOTU—is now blogging; check out the blog here for the latest insight and information. On what, exactly, you ask? Simply put, MOTU was created by Mayor Nutter to coordinate the efforts of city agencies (Water Department, Streets Department, Parks and Recreation, etc.) and make sure plans are made and things get done, whether it's the maintenance of a bike lane, subway line or airport runway. The projects MOTU oversees run the gamut from LED traffic lights and recycling initiatives to the airport expansion and the construction of a new 40th Street Bridge (pictured above).

The latest news from MOTU is the Pedestrian Plaza Program, modeled after successful initiatives in New York and San Francisco, and the city is taking suggestions on where to place them:

"Pedestrian Plazas provide the public the chance to sit and enjoy the city’s vibrant street life. This program will make our streets safer for pedestrians and drivers alike by converting underutilized street segments into public space. Working with community organizations, the City will paint over underutilized street segments and allow the community to install benches, tables, chairs, bike parking and some limited landscaping, turning excess roadway into Pedestrian Plazas."

Be sure to check out the official MOTU site as well for more information on the department's projects and mission.