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Why the Anti-Urban Bias? (Opinion)

THE BILLIONS of dollars being spent on infrastructure across the nation provide an opportunity to plan for a better America, but politics-as-usual favors sprawl over city. This anti-urban bias of national policies must end. Over the past 60 years, cities have been hit by a painful policy trifecta: subsidization of highways, subsidization of homeownership, and a school system that creates strong incentives for many parents to leave city borders.

FAA Error-Reporting Program Reveals Hazards, Yields Fixes

A new error-reporting program in the nation's air-traffic system is revealing thousands of previously unknown hazards such as dangerous runway crossings and unreported midair problems. In the year and a half since the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) kicked off the program — which guarantees employees immunity in exchange for honest accounts of all but the most serious lapses — the agency has been deluged by more

Bullet Train Plan Under Fire from Local Officials

 The state's massive high-speed rail project could save up to $2 billion -- and hundreds of homes -- by expanding and sharing existing tracks through the L.A.-O.C. region, local transit leaders argue....In unusually blunt language, Art Leahy, chief executive of the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, criticized the high-speed train project before a group of Southern California city and rail officials last month....Among other things, Leahy questioned designing the system to run trains every five minutes. "That's extraordinary," he said.

Report to Offer Glimpse of High-Speed Rail Plan

Thursday in San Jose, the High-Speed Rail Authority will meet and release a report revealing some details about studies on the location of a San Francisco station and where high-speed trains will travel - at ground level, in a trench or tunnel, or atop an elevated structure - as they make their way down the Peninsula. But no firm decisions are expected....The study of route and station alignments to be released Thursday, he said, is part of a lengthy environmental review process that won't be completed until the summer or fall of 2011.

A Fill-up that Goes Farther (Editorial)

Think California's lost the knack to inspire and create? New fuel economy standards -born and bred here - launched a revolution that Washington and even Detroit are ready to accept. Using federal clean-air rules, the Obama administration is decreeing that cars and light trucks must boost mileage to 35 miles per gallon from the current 25 over the next six years. Emissions - the climate change kind - also will drop as vehicles burn less gas and spew less from tail pipes.

Open Space Little Effect on Housing, Study Says

Land preservation efforts in Silicon Valley and surrounding areas have had only a minor effect on housing construction, according to a new Stanford study that looks to end decades of squabbling between environmentalists and developers. The study, published online recently in the journal Biological Conservation, found that much of the land preserved over the past 50 years would have been only marginally useful for housing....Over the years, developers and business groups have complained that converting so much land into protected open space has made what's left so expensive that young famili

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