Transportation headlines, Tuesday, Oct. 18

Here is a look at some of the transportation headlines gathered by us and the Metro Library. The full list of headlines is posted on the library’s blog.

Before starting, I bleated in this space yesterday about the crummy traffic light synchronization in Pasadena. Is it just me? Or is it obvious to everyone else that it’s stop-stop-stop no matter what your mode of transpo is?

A very visualization of the Helsinki transit network posted by Lauri Vanhala on YouTube. Animators in the Los Angeles area please take note.

Thoughts while riding Expo Line bikeway (L.A. Streetsblog)

Damien Newton gives a very mixed review to the new bike lane mostly along the light rail lane between USC and La Cienega Boulevard. They’re better, he writes, than the ones on Venice Boulevard but not by much. The problem is that part of the lanes are in the gutter, making for a rough ride — and that’s not mentioning obstacles such as garbage cans that cyclists may have to avoid. Excerpt:

One of the promises of the Expo project was a safe way for cyclists to get from Santa Monica all the way to Downtown Los Angeles.  Having just pedaled the route down Venice Boulevartd a couple of days earlier my personal view is that the Expo route is going to be a far superior one to the rough ride on Venice with plenty of traffic “Jerry Browning” you everytime you try the route to Downtown.  But the lanes aren’t good enough that everyone is going to make that choice.  Given the promises made to cyclists, that’s a shame.

Investors may not invest in high-speed rail until it’s running (L.A. Times)

Good story about a preview of the California High-Speed Rail Authority’s business plan, due to be released by Nov. 1. The gist of it: the preview — in the form of a letter to key elected officials — says that private money may not flow to the project until after it’s built and running. That raises the question of where the $43 billion will come from to build the line from Anaheim to San Francisco, given that the state is at least $30 billion short of funds. Federal money is likely to dry up, given Republican opposition to the bullet train project and the other two sources of money — the state of California and private funds — are now in doubt. There’s the possibility that a new type of federal tax credit could be used — if adopted by Congress — but that has issues, too. Any bright ideas, anyone?

 

The Obama Administration’s State Department will soon make a decision on whether to allow the Keystone XL pipeline built linking the Canadian tar sands oil fields to the Gulf Coast. This video was produced by Robert Redford and posted on the New York Times’ digital opinion page. Here’s a good story from the Washington Post about the many parties lobbying for and against the pipeline. A decision to allow it to be built would — thereby generating jobs — would almost certainly alienate many of the conservation groups that backed Obama in 2008.

1 reply

  1. I agree… try driving up Marengo between Glenarm and the 210… you hit so many lights, I swear it has to be intentional.