Transportation headlines, Wednesday, April 27

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.

Union Station’s Fred Harvey to get a permanent restaurant tenant? (Franklin Avenue)

The new owner of Union Station — which is Metro — is seeking a tenant to reoccupy the classic restaurant space that hasn’t served a meal since the 1960s. A Realtor tells Franklin Avenue there are several options for a tenant for some or all of the old room that in recent years has mostly been used for film and TV shoots as well as special events. Very good news! Below is a music video from Fiona Apple shot in the Fred Harvey space. Hat tip: LAObserved and Tropico Station.

New report: Higher gas prices mean less sprawl (Infrastructurist)

It’s well understood that higher gas prices typically nudge people to buy more fuel efficient cars. And by extension, we can imagine that neighborhoods where you have to drive everywhere also become less appealing. Well Infrastructure points us to a study from Canadian researchers that statistically confirms higher gas prices contribute to a slight decrease in suburban sprawl.

On average, a 1% increase in gas prices has caused: i) a .32% increase in the population living in the inner city and ii) a 1.28% decrease in low-density housing units.

After all, during times of high gas prices, living in the inner city often means a shorter commute, more activities within walking distance and easier access to public transit.

To remove a freeway in Long Beach (Part 2): By the numbers (Long Beach Post)

A number of cities — from Milwaukee to San Francisco to Seoul — have in recent years torn down elevated highways to great effect, stitching together formerly separated neighborhoods and creating usable land. Post writer Brian Olaszewski argues that the same oustide-of-the-box urban planning should be brought to Long Beach. Specifically, he advocates replacing the Terminal Island Freeway, among others, because the level of traffic doesn’t justify an expressway and a local street could do the trick with less impacts on the community.

Los Angeles and Bakersfield remain among U.S.’s most polluted cities, report says (L.A. Times)

Los Angeles has changed a great deal from the dark days when smog-addled Foothill residents couldn’t even see the San Gabriel Mountains looming over them. While soot and smog levels are down over the last decade, Los Angeles still has very high levels of ozone, according to a report by the American Lung Association. Ozone helps protect us from solar radiation when it’s high in atmosphere, but can be very bad for our respiratory systems at ground level. The primary culprits for all this air pollution? Tailpipe emissions from cars and trucks, as well as diesel emissions connected with the movement of goods at the ports of L.A. and Long Beach.