Metro Pushing HOT Lanes at Public Meetings

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While Metro’s sales tax proposal has been dominating the news, the agency has also been pursuing adding managed toll lanes, also known as HOT Lanes, to the I-10 and I-110.  You may remember that Metro received a $213 million grant from the FHWA to construct HOT Lanes on two LA County freeways and buy new buses two facilitate better transit along the effected corridors.

Metro’s proposal proved so unpopular with politicians in the San Gabriel Valley that the original plan, to change HOV Lanes to HOT Lanes on the I-10 and I-210, was changed to the current plan.  It will be interesting to see how these pols respond if congestion pricing proves to be a rousing success on the I-10 and I-110.

Meanwhile, Metro is making their pitch directly to effected communities in four public meetings beginning this Saturday in El Monte.  The full announcement, and listings for all four public meetings, can be found after the jump.

You are invited to attend a Metro and Caltrans workshop about
proposed Congestion Reduction Demonstration Project in the I-10 and
I-110 corridors.

The Project involves a demonstration of
FastLanes, an innovative way to make traveling the 10 and the 110
faster and more reliable. These High Occupancy Vehicle lanes would use
a congestion pricing system to offer single occupancy vehicle drivers,
carpoolers, vanpoolers and transit riders more choices to help improve
their trips through the area.

The purpose of these meetings
is to give you an opportunity to participate in identifying options
that would make your travel time and mode more efficient and suitable
to your mobility requirements. We hope you will join us and share your
ideas as we explore opportunities to improve your mobility and reduce
congestion.

I-10 Corridor
Monday, August 18 (6–8pm)
El Monte Community Center
3130 North Tyler Ave
El Monte, CA 91731
Served by Metro Line 287 and the El Monte Trolley (Yellow Line)

Saturday, August 23 (10am–noon)
Monterey Park Bruggemeyer Library
318 S. Ramona Ave
Monterey Park, CA 91754
Served by Metro Lines 70, 260, 762 & 770, Montebello Line 30, and Monterey Park Spirit Lines 1, 2, 3 & 4

I-110 Corridor
Saturday, August 16 (9–11am)
Carson Civic Center (Carson Community Center)
801 E. Carson Street
Carson, CA 90745
Served
by Metro Lines 446 & 447 and Torrance Transit Line 3 – location is
a short walk from bus stops at Avalon & Carson

Wednesday, August 20 (6–8pm)
Constituent Service Center (Parks District Office)
8475 S. Vermont
Los Angeles, CA 90044
Served
by Metro Lines 115, 204, 442, 715 & 754 and DASH Vermont-Main –
location is a short walk from bus stops at Vermont & Manchester

Photo: Metro

  • It’s a little concerning, in terms of the 110 – I worry that, if they open up the 110’s lanes to paying customers, the Harbor Transitway will slow down noticeably.

    I don’t get why the SGV has so much political power; the way it looks from the rest of the County, they just can’t keep their bloody traps shut.

  • What is good about congestion pricing? Doesn’t it just move the bottlenecks around?

  • fpteditors: Well, I think the thing that people need to realize is that engineers know that, once you have traffic, it doesn’t go away. You can re-route it, you can give people alternatives, you can deal with localized structural deficiencies (badly designed or unsafe intersections, etc.), but you can’t make it go away – you’re simply moving it around, but demand will always increase faster than you would ever want to build capacity. Maybe moving it around is what you want to do – Phoenix built an additional highway to skirt truck traffic away from its downtown corridor in order to reduce pollution Downtown, and it seems to have accomplished the goal – the 10 through Downtown Phoenix is worse than it was 10 years ago, but the goal was, among other things, was to move truck traffic onto routes like the AZ-202 and AZ-101, and that limited goal has been accomplished. If they figure out a way to build out the AZ-202 along Pecos that doesn’t piss off the Gila Indians or cut through South Mountain, they will probably succeed in removing Sonora-Los Angeles truck traffic from Phoenix. Same for Boston – they built the Big Dig not to make the city traffic-free, but to relocate the traffic jam elsewhere so as to make the heart of the City more pedestrian and transit friendly.

    So I don’t terribly mind congestion pricing as a concept, because the goal is to re-order traffic via demand (for instance, congestion pricing in London encourages transit use as well as cabs, since cabs are usually either exempt from the congestion pricing or can spread the fee among dozens of fares per day), as well as to raise revenue for alternatives such as more reliable and frequent bus service as well as new rail projects.

    So congestion pricing on the 10 wouldn’t really serve those purposes right now, especially if it was farmed out to a private company that ate a share of the profits. Congestion pricing in DTLA would serve those purposes if done in-house at LADOT, but would be politically infeasible.

    I guess the sum of all that is that I generally like the concept (I’m disappointed that NYC’s congestion pricing died on the vine), but the way it’s being proposed in LA is based on political expediency rather than reaching an end goal.

    Now if they put congestion pricing on the 10 beginning the day the Expo line to Santa Monica opens, I’d be all about that.

  • In some areas it actually raises money to put into the infrastructure and sometimes into transit, which I would assume fpteditors would like. Instead of fighting it, you should lobby for set aside % for transit from funds raised.

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