Transportation headlines, Tuesday, August 9

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.

Jerry Brown has a way out of the high-speed rail mess (Sacramento Bee)

Columnist Dan Walters recalls that Gov. Brown in the 1970s used a court ruling to finally put an end to the unpopular carpool lanes on the Santa Monica Freeway after wavering for some time — Brown liked the idea. Fast forward to today. Walters can see why Brown would like the idea of a bullet train linking cities together across the state. Walters says Brown should use the lack of federal funds to put an end to the project before a segment is built in the San Joaquin Valley that will consume a lot of money and sit there unused.

A really long goodbye to the Wilshire ramps on the 405 (ZevWeb)

Supervisor and Metro Board Member Zev Yaroslavsky previews the construction of new ‘flyover’ ramps this fall linking Wilshire Boulevard and the 405 freeway and says it’s going to take weeks to rebuild the eight ramps. He says work is likely to begin in November and that a pair of ramps will be closed first: the westbound Wilshire on-ramp to the northbound 405 and the northbound 405 off-ramp to westbound Wilshire. Neighbors are rightly concerned because the area is a traffic mess during most rush hours.

Is L.A. County ready for a bike sharing program (L.A. Streetsblog)

The Metro Board last week approved a motion by Yaroslavsky asking staff to investigate bike sharing programs and where they may work on the Metro system. Damien Newton at Streetsblog asks if the area is really ready for the bike rental programs that have sprung up in some other cities that are more bike friendly than Los Angeles. Good question. My two cents: downtown Los Angeles isn’t there quite yet but perhaps the programs could work in bike-friendly Santa Monica and/or Long Beach. Pasadena, with its six Gold Line stations, actually has a lot of good places to ride, but I’m not sure visitors to the area could readily find them from the train stations. It’s only been eight years, btw.

Culver City and Expo Line move forward on station (L.A. Streetsblog)

The apparent stalemate between the city and the agency building the light rail project from downtown L.A. to Culver City seems to have reached a conclusion. Culver City will get the street improvements it wants near the aerial station, the agency will get the $7 million it needed from the city to help finish the project.

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