California Legislation Watch: Weekly Update

Screen Shot 2014-05-02 at 4.34.24 PMHere is Streetsblog’s weekly highlight of California legislation related to sustainable transportation.

The legislature is in recess until August.

Light rail no longer illegal in LA’s San Fernando Valley: A.B. 577 from Adrin Nazarian (D-Sherman Oaks) was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown last week. The bill repealed a 1990 law that prohibited construction of light rail along a section of the Orange Line, and thus opens up the possibility of replacing the Orange Line BRT with rail. Whether that’s good or bad is up for debate, and Streetsblog has presented arguments both for and against the line’s conversion.

Replacing the car-centric LOS planning metric: Those who’ve been waiting with bated breath to find out what will replace Level of Service (LOS) as a transportation planning metric in California Environmental Quality Act requirements were disappointed when the July 1 deadline came and went without any pronouncements from the Office of Planning and Research (OPR). However, it looks likely that some version of Vehicle Miles Traveled will replace LOS, which has given rise to sprawling development patterns and wide streets unsuitable for walking and bicycling. When OPR does publish its recommendations, there will be a 45-day public comment period, and Streetsblog will provide the details.

Funds for bike and pedestrian projects: The Active Transportation Program, which provides funding for pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure projects, has logged all the proposals received as of its May 21 deadline. A total of 770 projects applied for the $124.2 million that is available for fiscal year 2014-15. The projects include bicycle and pedestrian plans, bridges, sidewalk and signal improvements, Safe Routes to Schools programs, traffic calming and speed reduction efforts, and a host of large and small infrastructure improvements throughout the state.

Active Transportation Project applications pile up at Caltrans headquarters on May 21.Photo: California Bicycle Coalition
Active Transportation Project applications pile up at Caltrans headquarters on May 21.
Photo: California Bicycle Coalition

Email tips, alerts, press releases, ideas, etc. to melanie@streetsblog.org.

For social media coverage focused on statewide issues, follow Melanie @currymel on Twitter or like our Facebook page here.

  • keenplanner

    It will me interesting to see whether LA will actually transform itself from the auto-choked sprawling mess that it is, to an actual collection of cities.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

California Legislation Watch: Weekly Update

|
For social media coverage of California’s statewide transportation issues, follow Melanie @currymel on Twitter or like the Streetsblog California Facebook page. Here’s Streetsblog’s weekly highlight of legislation and events related to sustainable transportation at the California capitol. News on the implementation of S.B. 743, which removes Automobile Level of Service (LOS) from consideration as an environmental […]

Today’s Headlines

|
New Sharrows on 14th Street between Montana and Washington in Santa Monica.  More from Gary Rides Bikes City Planning Director Gail Goldberg Retires (California Planning Report, Curbed) Reminder: Metro Fares Go Up Today (The Source, LAT) Truck Academy ok’d for Valley (LA_Now) L.A. Has High Rate of "Commuter Pain."  I Know, my Knee Has Been […]

Report: In Cutting Emissions, CAHSR Expensive Compared to Local Upgrades

|
Streetfilms featured Los Angeles’ Orange Line BRT and bike path in 2009. A new UCLA report says infrastructure projects like the Orange Line are a better way to invest cap-and-trade funds than CA High-Speed Rail. UCLA’s Lewis Center published a report yesterday finding that California’s High-Speed Rail project is a relatively expensive way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) […]

California Legislation Watch: Weekly Update

|
California’s legislative season is heating up, and both the Assembly and the Senate are beginning to read and discuss the bills wending their way though the session. Here’s Streetsblog’s weekly highlight of events and legislation related to transportation at the capitol. A.B. 1532, Mike Gatto’s (D-Los Angeles) hit-and-run legislation, passed its second approval at the […]

Replacing LOS: Experts Debate How CA Should Measure Transpo Impacts

|
California planning experts continue to debate how to most effectively measure transportation impacts in a way that will foster smarter growth, after the state abandoned the car-centric metric known as Level of Service (LOS). The acronym-laden process of measuring transportation under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) may be complex and wonky, but it’s certainly important. In […]