Transportation headlines, Wednesday, August 15

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.

L.A. Council aims at changing parking requirements (L.A. Times)

The City Council voted yesterday to create special parking districts in which current parking requirements could be relaxed or increased depending on the circumstance. That means that potentially developers could get a break on building parking for some new residents and that new businesses in some cases may not have to produce as much parking as they have in the past. This is seen as an incentive that could help lure new businesses and redevelopment — particularly to areas near transit — and help ignite economic development in others. Los Angeles' strict parking requirements are widely seen as a major reason that so much of the city is covered by parking lots, especially on commercial corridors. Here's the ordinance.

For Universal City, a bridge not far enough (L.A. Streetsblog)

Some Valley residents aren't pleased that Metro is ramping up to spend $19 million to build a pedestrian bridge over Lankershim Boulevard at Universal City to connect the subway station to Universal City proper. Skeptics say the bridge — something promised years ago — isn't necessary and would rather see the money plowed into other transportation improvements.

Pasadena Council resolves to oppose three 710 alternatives (Pasadena Star News)

The Council on Monday night voted to formally oppose three alternatives under study by Metro to improve traffic in the area near the 710 gap: a tunnel between the 710 freeway in Alhambra and the 134 freeway that would go under the San Rafael Hills, a widening of Avenue 64 to accommodate more north-south traffic and another alternative that would potentially widen parts of Huntington Drive, Fair Oaks Avenue and Pasadena Avenue.

The three alternatives are part of a package of 12 alternatives that Metro is studying as part of a potential project. The agency will carry some of those alternatives forward into a draft environmental document. The idea of the current study is to evaluate everything that might improve traffic times in the area AND seek public input on those ideas.

In the northeast, travelers turn to Amtrak (New York Times)

In the late 1990s, about 33 percent of travelers between New York and Washington went by Amtrak. Today that number is 75 percent, an increase attributed to faster trains, airline delays and increased airport security.