Transportation headlines, Tuesday, Sept. 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 Headlines blog, which you can also access via email subscription or RSS feed.

 

Downtown L.A. in all its glory! Photo by Neil Kremer, via Flickr creative commons.

Downtown has arrived, believe it or not (Zocolo Public Square)

Here’s the roundup of last Friday’s panel in Grand Park about downtown L.A. The consensus of the four person panel was that downtown L.A. works on many levels, although everyone agreed there’s still work to be done. I liked this guy’s comments the best:

Architect Hernan Diaz Alonso, principal and founder of L.A.-based design practice Xefirotarch and graduate programs chair at SCI-Arc, first saw downtown Los Angeles in the early 1980s, when he was living in Argentina, on the screen in Blade Runner. “I’m disappointed because it’s becoming this clean and civilized place!” he said. He moved downtown in 2001 and touted its diversity and complexity; he loves raising a family in the area, he said. His biggest hope for downtown is that it gets denser—three or four times as dense as it is now—without losing its character. And with a young daughter at home and another child on the way, he’d like to see more schools in the area. Schools, he said, could become catalysts for all sorts of other changes, particular in the empty pockets of downtown between more developed neighborhoods.

Hallelujah on the density: that’s my issue with downtown L.A. is that it often feels un-peopled. There are way too many parking lots and far too many dead spots. Fill it up, city!

How important is transit access to airports? (Slate)

A follow-up to yesterday’s excellent Slate article on L.A.’s transit revolution asks how important is it to offer rail service to airports. In fact, it’s a mixed bag in most major cities in the U.S. and the writer doesn’t see that as a problem, arguing that rail lines to airports don’t provide as much benefit as other transit lines that get people to and from their jobs each day. Read and discuss, please.

Obama announces grants to replace diesel buses (L.A. Times)

The feds are providing about $8 million to agencies in the state to replace diesel buses with buses that burn fuel more cleanly. Riverside is a winner. Metro is not and for a good reason: Metro no longer runs any diesel buses.

5 replies

  1. Hi Steve, I am just wondering what happened to the six hybrid buses (bus numbers 4200 to 4205). Will they be back in service or be returned to NABI? Did Metro decide not to purchase additional ones due to costs? Also, when can we expect to see some new 40-foot or 45-foot buses? Thanks!

    By the way, so glad to see The Source is now back to its normal appearance.

  2. Delhi, India has a far better system of directly connecting rail to the airport than LA. That’s saying a lot how far behind the times LA is when it comes to connecting airport with rail.

  3. I think the MTA needs to start studying the Blue line to Long Beach Airport and the Orange or Red line to Burbank Airport along with the Crenshaw and Green lines into LAX. I think the City of ONT and County of SB should cover the expense to extend the gold line to ONT airport once LAX set ONT airport free.

  4. Warren, Burbank is served by MetroLink now. Would be nice to see the Red (or an I-5 corridor line) serve BRB.
    Long Beach Airport should be served be the extended Green Line. Taking the current end of the Green Line and taking a rough parallel of the 405 would take it right under LGB. From there it would meet the Blue and could sail down the coast.

  5. Just a person,

    And how does a person living in the West Side supposed to get to BUR using Metrolink? Wake up at 5 AM, drag your bags backtracking all the way to Union Station, cross fingers that you didn’t miss Metrolink because of its low frequency, schlep on through and get to BUR hoping you didn’t miss your flight? Or will people just drive?

    Face it, our rail to airport system is a total joke and is late night comedy show matter. Third World countries are better than us. No wonder LAX is noted time and time again as the worst airport years in a row.

    2012 http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2012/05/01/lax-named-2nd-worst-airport-in-america/
    2011 http://lukianwang.blogspot.com/2011/06/lax-ranked-3rd-worst-airport-in-world.html
    2010 http://articles.latimes.com/2010/feb/27/business/la-fi-travel-briefcase27-2010feb27
    2009 http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2009/05/worst-airport-ranking-doesnt-surprise-lax-officials.html