“We have to build an army of people who are willing to say ‘enough is enough,’” said Mayor Eric Garcetti at Wednesday’s MoveLA conference at Union Station, speaking of the region’s traffic and pollution problems.
He was there, along with hundreds of other county and city leaders, drumming up support for Measure R2, a proposed sales tax measure to raise more money for transit.
A recurring theme at the conference was the need to reduce the number of cars.
“We must address CO2 emissions,” said Dr. Manuel Pastor, a director at USC’s Center for Sustainable Cities. “One way to do that is to reduce vehicle miles driven.”
Which made me wonder how R2’s successful predecessor, Measure R, ended up funding projects that will do exactly the opposite, such as double-decking the 710.
In 2008, voters approved R’s half-cent Los Angeles County sales tax for a slew of transportation projects. It raises about $40 billion over 30 years. Denny Zane, former mayor of Santa Monica, founded MoveLA to push for this initiative. It grew out of a need to fund the Wilshire subway extension; Downtown Los Angeles, Koreatown, Century City, Beverly Hills, Westwood, Santa Monica — the “core” of Los Angeles stretches down the length of Wilshire Boulevard. Without a heavy rail “spine” connecting the region’s densest area, the entire transit network is handicapped.
But how do you convince someone in Encino or Alhambra to vote for a subway under Wilshire? Read more…