We recently redesigned our website, and converted blog hosts (we're now proud to be with Suqarespace, a cutting edge provider known for its sense of design and integrations with other services). Because of the conversion from Tumblr, our old Faster405.com blog posts are now archived: click here to view previous blog entires about the 405 project.
Angelenos Against Gridlock congratulates Eric Garcetti on being elected the next Mayor of Los Angeles. We look forward to working with the Garcetti administration in helping move forward Los Angeles towards its full potential.
Zev Yaroslavsky’s blog has a great story about the crushing crowds on the Orange Line. Click the headline above to read the story.
If we might add some reactions:
It’s a real reminder of the limitations of BRT and of non-grade separated transit lines.
Los Angeles tries to get away with bus rapid transit lines, and lower capacity, sometimes non-grade separated light rail (think of all the accidents and delays they cause for the Blue/Expo lines), leaving heavy rail just for the the Red/Purple line, while many other cities around the world choose roomy, faster heavy rail subways.
We could not be more thrilled with the interest around the city, nation, and even the world in our Faster 405 Campaign, supported by Elon Musk. For the latest press highlights from Good Morning America, Bloomberg, the UK Telegraph, TechCrunch, and more, visit our Faster405.com site.
Given the scale of Los Angeles’ infamous gridlock challenges, and the need to fight for both short-term and long-term solutions, there’s so much to do. Like what you’ve read in the press this week? Donate to support our efforts. Thanks!
Some are asking what the 405 delays mean for future Metro construction. Do the 405 highway delays mean we shouldn’t support future Metro subway construction? Absolutely not.
We’re as strong as ever in our belief that the solution for LA’s mobility crisis is a fully built-out rail system. That requires much more Metro rail construction, not scaling back. Can lessons be learned from the highway delays to avoid rail construction delays? Sure — but that’s not a reason not to proceed with what’s required to get LA moving. (It may be a reason why watchdog groups — like ours — continue to be needed, but let’s not lose sight of the main point: LA needs a huge amount of rail construction.)
LA is far behind the rest of the world. These slides show just how far behind we are. (Click the full screen button at bottom right to enlarge the slides.)
Have you voted for Angelenos Against Gridlock yet in the LA2050 Challenge? If not, the deadline is fast approaching (Wed, noon). Click here to vote (or to learn more) now! (Use Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox if you have trouble, and be sure to click the email confirmation link after you vote.) We need your vote to succeed — it’s going to be VERY close!
Also, don’t miss our Q&A on Reddit going on now!
Governor Jerry brown spoke to reporters today traveling on his delegation to China, bemoaning the slow pace of progress in California, versus the incredible pace of construction in China.
"We sit around and mope. And process. And navel gaze," said the governor about the political environment back home. "And the rest of the world is moving at mach speed. So when we go back, we’ll emulate some of that."
Read more in reporter John Myers’ piece: http://www.news10.net/news/california/article/240458/430/Brown-rides-praises-China-bullet-train
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Vote in the LA2050 Challenge from the Goldhirsh Foundation & GOOD, and we could receive one of ten $100,000 grants. Our ambitious project proposal calls for a completely transformed Los Angeles region, with a fully-built-out Metro subway and Metrolink commuter rail system. But we can’t do it without your help: click here to learn more and to cast your vote right now!
WHY YOU SHOULD VOTE FOR US:
OUR VISION: in 2050, LA County will have a world-class, fully built-out Metro rail and Metrolink system, with fast, frequent, ubiquitous rail transit and commuter rail service that saturates the region, and rivals the world’s best transportation systems. Besides dramatically transforming quality of life by freeing Angelenos from crushing gridlock, rail will also lay the foundation for greatly increased housing options to be built close to jobs centers, reversing sprawl and increasing supply to help make housing more abundant and thus more affordable.
OUR LA2050 PROJECT: This year, if approved for an LA2050 grant, we will bring prominent global leaders to Los Angeles to shatter the status quo, and dramatically expand Angelenos’ vision for what’s possible. We will invite top visionaries to come to LA for high-impact public lectures and meetings with LA’s political and civic elites, such as:
- Boris Johnson, Mayor of London: London has a bit of a lead over Los Angeles, having launched its subway system a full 150 years ago; more recently, their bikeshare system also has lessons for LA.
- Tyler Brûlé, founder of Monocle magazine (known for its global Quality of Life city rankings) and columnist for the Financial Times.
Other cities around the world have solved their transportation challenges. There’s no reason we can’t too.
We’ll also produce a YouTube video and infographics laying out our bold vision for LA’s future with world class rail transit and commuter rail options that move Angelenos quickly and efficiently, and how to pay for it and make it happen. And we will do outreach and work to build a network of supporters to endorse the vision and to support Los Angeles’ ascendancy into the ranks of world class cities.
CAST YOUR VOTE TODAY:
Please vote for our project, make comments on the project page, and share the link with your friends. Here’s how:
2. Click the vote button on the webpage. Sign in or create an account on GOOD, which is hosting the voting. (If you don’t have a GOOD account, it’s free to join, and you can use either your email or Facebook to join. After you join, you must verify your email for your vote to count.)
Once you’ve voted, you’ll get a notification at the top of GOOD’s website verifying that your vote has been counted.
Remember, you can only vote once, but please invite your friends to vote, too, by sharing the link via email, Twitter, Facebook, etc.
Please also Tweet to Your Followers!
The California Economic Summit website has a roundup of some effects of CEQA on important rail projects for LA & the California (and we quote):
- Transit lines in Los Angeles: The CEQA Working Group released another case study this week featuring how CEQA has been used to stop the building of a transit line that will relieve congestion on a major Los Angeles freeway. A neighborhood group has locked the project up in a CEQA suit since 2010 while they push for an alternative route. Barring further delays, the project is finally underway—and is now scheduled to be completed eight years after the approval process began.
- High-speed rail: The governor’s favorite reason for reforming CEQA got a boost this month when a judge dismissed a CEQA suit that threatened to disrupt high-speed rail’s route through the Bay Area. The suit, brought by the peninsula cities of Menlo Park and Atherton, had long been criticized for having more to do with the way the rail system will look than with any concern over its impact on the environment. “This lawsuit is a reminder that some sort of CEQA reform is badly needed,” writes Robert Cruickshank of the California High Speed Rail Blog. The Atherton City Council recently sent $10,000 to the lawyers representing the Central Valley farmers whose CEQA suit is high-speed rail’s next major hurdle. That case will be heard beginning in April.
This Los Angeles Times op-ed by Harold Meyerson addresses an important deeper issue that speaks to one of the reasons we’re in the gridlocked mess we are in Los Angeles. Here at Angelenos Against Gridlock we’ve seen what we’d term a pretty big failure by those you might expect to be civic elites to actually be involved in the local issues around them. And our cities and region suffer mightily for it.
Good for Harold Meyerson for calling out this problem. Now we just need some arm twisting by this generation’s equivalent of Dorothy Chandler to get more people to step up to the plate and meet their responsibilities to be involved. The question is, who will take that role?
With all of the questions about whether the future LAX airport rail connections will be done right, it’s worth noting that the International Air Rail Organisation is hosting its 21st conference next month. We certainly hope Metro & LAX leaders will be well represented among the attendance, to be reminded how things are done right in other cities around the world.
Angelenos Against Gridlock is thrilled Metro is launching a bike safety campaign. You can read more about it here.
Let’s face it: the state of bike safety in Los Angeles County has been pretty abysmal. “I’ve been hit and had my bike ‘totaled’ multiple times,” said David Murphy, President of Angelenos Against Gridlock. “I feel lucky to be alive. Bike safety issues are not some abstract low-priority issue. It’s incredibly important we make the Los Angeles region safer for residents and commuters on bikes.”
When meeting with Metro bike staff in the past, one of the things we encouraged them to do was to use Metro buses for an ad campaign for bike safety, just like Santa Monica Big Blue Bus had done, and which we believe Metro had been considering. We’re thrilled that they’re doing so.