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For many cities that have endured the painful process of dissolving their redevelopment agencies, the bloodletting has begun anew.
Well, California's at it again -- going in a different direction than the rest of the country.
The Census Bureau recently released a new report showed that -- by at least one measure -- the nation's overall population density dropped by 6% between 2000 and 2010. But by this same measure, the population density of most California metro areas -- where almost 90% of Californians live -- is going up. And density's going up faster in the smaller counties. What gives?
Preliminary plans were recently revealed Los Angeles's 77-year old union station modernization project. The plans (including four design concepts) focus on the integration of the stateís High Speed Rail system with the cityís historic transit hub. Additionally, the improvements aim to enhance the passenger experience by adding restaurants and retail, centralizing alternate terminals and improving connectivity and accessibility to its surrounding neighborhoods.
Yesterday’s California Supreme Court ruling on medical marijuana dispensaries put a longstanding legal dispute to rest and gave cities the green light to zone out such establishments.
I love a Parisian stroll as much as the next guy does, but I have friends in the planning community who make me look like Robert Moses. They ride fixies. They build parklets. They live in lofts. They go on urban hikes. Some don’t own cars—in Los Angeles. And I have never heard one of them say, “man, I really wish L.A. was more like Bangladesh.”
Jerry Brown may have given up on CEQA reform this year, but Darrell Steinberg has not.
The Senate leader released details of his proposed reform of the California Environmental Quality Act yesterday. It’s not sweeping reform. Rather, it contains a series of incremental changes designed to speed projects along. These include statewide significance treshholds on some topics including traffic; some reforms to CEQA litigation procedures; and $30 million in annual funding to the Strategic Growth Council to continue providing statewide planning grants.
Among some conservative circles, it’s become fashionable to say that liberals “hate America” any time Democrats try to do, well, anything.
A Sacramento Superior Court judge has – for the second time – ruled against three Peninsula cities who filed suit against the High-Speed Rail Authority under the California Environmental Quality Act.
Not long ago, the Census Bureau released some new analyses of commuting, focused especially on “mega-commuting” – that is, commuters who drive more than 50 miles and 90 minutes one way. The numbers are predictably frightening – these folks travel extremely long distances, using up a lot of time, gas, and road capacity on the process.
But mega-commuters only make up about 2% of all commuters. The bigger message from the Census data is a much more prosaic – and discouraging – message about ordinary, day-to-day commuting.
Is the California Environmental Quality Act finally on the verge of major reform?
Or will CEQA’s defenders succeed in limiting the reform to just nibbling around the edges, without attacking the law’s basic structure?