Transportation headlines, Wednesday, Nov. 16

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.

Kings County sues to stop bullet train from building there (Fresno Bee)

The county in the San Joaquin Valley alleges that the project being designed isn’t the same as the one that was approved by voters in 2008. The California High-Speed Rail Authority declined comment. The main allegation is that state bond money is to be used to build the first stage of the line as a conventional railroad that isn’t electrified as called for in Prop 1A in 2008. Under the Authority’s plans, the electric lines would come much later. Lawsuits over big transportation projects are, of course, fairly common. But given the challenges to fund the bullet train and resistance elsewhere, it’s yet another hurdle for the Authority to clear.

Subsidized parking for transit project meeting (L.A. Streetsblog)

Editor Damien Newton asks a great question: why is free parking offered for those attending community meetings — in last night’s case, for the Expo Line — while no free transit is provided? One answer is that parking in some parts of town is in very short supply and free parking is a way to encourage attendance at meetings. That said, I’m not going to argue with Damien on this one. The dude has a point!

Spring Street bike lanes to get paint job soon! (LADOT Bike Blog)

It’s extremely refreshing to read that the new bike lanes (not sharrows!) on Spring Street in downtown L.A. between Cesar Chavez and 9th Street are about to get some green “colorization” this weekend, weather permitting. These lanes should help cyclists get to and from L.A. Union Station. In addition, bike lanes are coming soon to First Street.

SFMTA Audit criticizes poor project oversight, cost overruns (S.F. Streetsblog)

The audit found that 12 out of 13 projects reviewed had cost over-runs totaling $87 million. The audit also concluded that weak oversight and poor staff reports to the agency’s Board of Directors were among reasons for the problems. The SFMTA was considering a fare hike but the Board has swept that off the table — at least for now.