San Diego Can’t Hit State Climate Goals Without Major Transportation Changes

The Voice of San Diego reported on a refreshing statement of the obvious as to the level of changes needed in the county’s transportation planning to meet State climate goals: The region simply can’t meet state requirements for thwarting climate change the way things are and the way they’re headed, Hasan Ikrhata, director of the San Diego Association of Governments, said at a Friday board meeting. Even if the region built the trolley lines and bus services leaders have been discussing, it would not change enough. Either state law would have to change, or regional leaders need to reimagine plans…

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Strong Towns offers important insights on congestion

The Strong Towns website has posted a series of important articles on congestion. Taken together, they frame how public agencies in California and the U.S. have been doggedly heading in the wrong direction in transportation and land use planning. Here’s a sampling: The Causes of Traffic and Congestion, addresses the question of whether new development causes more traffic. Here is its excellent summary: Development can add traffic. However, development that brings amenities and people closer together and reduces the need to travel so far can actually reduce traffic. With a mixture of uses, you can achieve a high population density…

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Editorial totally nails the housing crisis

In an editorial that TRANSDEF believes to be the best policy work of a generation, Bay Area News Group Editorial Page Editor Dan Borenstein takes on the housing crisis. “Stop deepening Bay Area transportation, housing crisis” takes on the stale thinking that has powered Bay Area decision making for decades: It’s time to stop digging this housing deficit hole deeper. We need more housing. But we need it in the right places.   Bay Area cities with housing shortfalls – San Francisco, Cupertino, Menlo Park and Palo Alto, for example – should stop adding more buildings for jobs unless they…

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SF Transit Riders Union tells SFMTA “Do your job!”

In a superb opinion piece, Rachel Hyden, Executive Director of the SF Transit Riders, documents the political cowardice of San Francisco’s Municipal Transportation Agency in implementing the City’s longstanding Transit First policy. She forcefully argues that Transit First is critical to making the City more livable, by speeding up transit and making it an attractive mode of travel for large numbers of residents. Transit professionals and transit advocates know what’s needed to improve transit. What’s missing is the political will to make policy decisions on behalf of the greater good, when objections are raised by those that insist on driving.…

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Plan Bay Area Analyzed In Depth

Plan Bay Area Analyzed In Depth 06/01/17 Filed in: Transportation Planning TRANSDEF submitted extensive comments today on Plan Bay Area, the regional transportation plan for the Bay Area. A condensed version for policymakers was submitted earlier. Here’s a summary of the top points about what’s wrong with the Draft EIR: Improper assessment of GHG impacts o SB 375 calls for reducing regional emissions from cars and light trucks. Without State emission reduction measures, regional emissions increase 10%. o RTP will impede the state’s achievement of GHG emissions reductions targets set by SB 32. o Climate Initiatives from the 2013 RTP have not been funded. Why…

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Caltrans Introduces Smart Mobility

Caltrans Introduces Smart Mobility 06/22/09 Filed in: Climate Change | Transportation Planning Caltrans offered a workshop last week in Sacramento on their new Smart Mobility Framework.  This is a program that Caltrans has developed in association with EPA.  It takes Smart Growth principles and integrates them into transportation in a manner that environmental activists will find both familiar and heartening.   There is a draft document available on the website below that is open for comment through June 30.  This document is good enough to serve as the rallying point for future activism.  It discusses induced demand and reducing vehicle miles–we never thought we would see that coming from Caltrans.  Check it out on Caltrans…

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