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 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!
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.