Into the great wide open, Vermont BRT, bullet train: HWR, April 26


Curbed LA has a blunt approach to its post on the Vermont Transit Corridor project: “There’s no money for rail on Vermont Avenue but Metro will pursue it anyway.”

As the article explains, the Metro Board voted Thursday to send two options for bus rapid transit (side running and a side-center running combo) to the formal environmental review. A technical study will also look at an entirely center-running project, which is seen as a potentially faster and better form of BRT.

The Metro Board wanted rail options considered, too, in case the funding should materialize — Vermont, after all, is a very high ridership corridor. The Board also wants to know if the BRT line could be extended to Harbor City.

The rub, as Curbed suggests, is that the project has $522 million allocated to it through Measure M but rail would likely cost several billion dollars. The one dissenting vote came from Metro Board Member John Fasana, who warned against pursuing too many projects without funding.

•Despite the city of L.A.’s goal of eliminating driving-related deaths, fatal car crashes in the city of L.A. have risen 32 percent since 2015 — even with 1,080 road safety improvements made in that time, reports the LAT.

As I’ve written before, I suspect the two main culprits in L.A. and elsewhere are lack of enforcement of traffic laws and distracted driving.

The LAT and, seemingly, Gov. Gavin Newsom are blaming consulting for cost increases on the state bullet train project, saying too much work was farmed out to the private sector.

•Budget cuts in the city of Santa Monica — due mostly to pension liabilities — could lead to the city’s Breeze bike share getting the axe. Not helping Breeze is competition from scooters and private dockless bikes, reports the Santa Monica Daily Press.

Things to listen to whilst transiting: Pop Culture Happy Hour tackles “Avengers: Endgame” for those of you hitting the cinemaplex this weekend.

If you’re looking to look beyond the Avengers, here’s the summer movie preview from PCHH:

A lil’ traveling music for your weekend:

2 replies

  1. So many bullet train issues.
    Should have built from LA to Bakersfield first to finally connect the north and south of the state. Even if nothing else were to be built, Amtrak and maybe light weight freights could have used the route.
    Or if CHSR were going, this first leg would be generated revenue
    Duh on the consultants. Should have called up Japan, Germany and France- have them design the segments and we build it. Then buy off the shelf equipment used and battle tested in Europe.
    Such a giant missed opportunity.

    So Newson should=
    1/ Complete inspection of what has been already built and validate the work done and anything not done right gets corrected now, not later.
    2/ Complete financial audit
    3/ Cut and eliminate as many consultants as possible. Go design/build or something similar.
    Once again, Japan has expertise in earthquake country. Get them to assist on the LA-Bakersfield segment which needs to travel the shorter route up I-5 rather than trying to go over the Techacipi
    France could assist on valley segment and Germany could assist on interworking the CHSR into the urban segments- getting it on Caltrain into SF and Metrolink into LA.

  2. Did you ever figure out why the HSR letter was removed from yesterday’s agenda?