Several weeks after I wrote what could be described as emotion-driven defenses of California's approach to smart growth (in response to separate commentaries by Wendell Cox and Joel Kotkin), I was heartened to read a different, but complementary, perspective from Christopher B. Leinberger in this weekend's New York Times. It would appear that, when you run the numbers, smart growth might make sense after all.
The trials of Sisyphus are apt metaphors for that moment in the California Environmental Quality Act review process wherein parties believe they have reached the summit but in fact discover themselves at the bottom of the hill, only to repeat their past efforts.
Muting one of the more burdensome requirements of the Subdivision Map Act, the First Appellate has ruled in favor of “multiple sequential adjustments” in Sierra Club v. Napa County Board of Supervisors.
If urban planners in many California cities had their way, every street-level unit in their downtowns would house restaurants, bars, boutiques, and all sorts of other stores, all teeming with life. They might even have a pet store or two. Unfortunately for some cities, “how much is that banker in the window” doesn’t have quite the same ring.
The staff of the Strategic Growth Council has issued recommendations for the awarding of a total of $20.7 million for Urban Greening Grants to communities throughout the state. Funded by Proposition 84, the Urban Greening Grants complement the Sustainable Communities Planning Grants, which are also awarded by SGC. This is the second of three rounds of funding, to total $90 million.
With funding for planning growing ever more scarce around the state, some localities received a windfall last week from the Strategic Growth Council. SGC announced recommendations for its second round of Sustainable Communities Planning Grants. If the recommendations are adopted, a total of $24 million would be disbursed for 43 projects around the state.
As planners have increasingly embraced the principles of smart growth over the past few years, suburban areas have increasingly borne criticism as examples of how not to plan. This criticism often ignores a crucial point: even if suburbs are imperfect—largely because they promote automobile dependency—they are not necessarily hopeless. A recently completed study led by Prof.
Observers of the California Environmental Quality Act may find it refreshing when a court lays it on the line. And that is exactly what Division Eight of the Second Appellate District did in addressing CEQA’s requirements for baseline selection for projects with future implementation dates. Neighbors for Smart Rail v.
Against all odds, redevelopment isn’t quite history yet in California. Some projects continue. Most cities are engaged in a long wind-down process that is consuming considerable time and attention. And the state legislature is considering a variety of options to revive redevelopment, or at least get it back on life support.
Over the past month, California cities have been learning the fate of countless redevelopment projects—touching everything from graffiti-removal programs to nine-figure transit-oriented developments to billion-dollar stadiums. For many, the news is not good – especially now that the California Department of Finance has gotten into the act.
When Axl Rose first stepped off the bus from Indiana, took the stage at the Whisky, and screeched out the opening lines of “Welcome to the Jungle,” he probably wasn’t thinking about parking. But he might as well have been.
California's relentless, ever widening budget deficit has claimed another victim: redevelopment's affordable housing funds.
Ahoy there! Weary of California? Exhausted by redevelopment battles, EIR lawsuits, lack of transit, lack of money, the impossibility of getting anything done in Sacramento?
We have a solution for you: Live on the ocean! No, we’re not talking about a cruise ship, nor a well-appointed yacht, nor even a party boat stocked with poppers and wine coolers. This idea is infinitely better: an entire city floating by itself in the middle of the ocean!
The transit activists, it seems, are storming the gates in the Bay Area. Their target for the 2012 election season is the open District 3 seat on the Bay Area Rapid Transit, and a victory could signal the maturation of an insurgent trend years in the making. In an era dominated by Tea Party challenges to the political establishment, it is instead transit activists who are battling against BART’s status quo. Activists have become increasingly frustrated
I live too close to Century City and Beverly Hills to objectively report on the what is shaping up to be the most bitter land use battle in California: that of uber-wealthy Beverly Hills versus uber-ambitious Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Here's my best shot at an update.