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High-Speed Rail As a Conduit of Sprawl

It’s fast, it’s efficient and it is the future of transportation, but will high-speed rail cause sprawl?...“High-speed rail will simply add another layer of access to the far-flung suburbs/exurbs and Central Valley, resulting in more mass-produced subdivisions,” warns ROBERT CERVERO, director of the University of California Transportation Center and author of Development Around Transit....An example of this can be seen in cities like Palmdale, which is 58 miles north of Los Angeles.

What the fight over transit funding is really all about

You may be hearing or reading today that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has said he will veto the Democrats’ plan to cut public transit funding. If that sounds odd, it’s because the real story is the reverse. The governor actually opposes to the bill because it gives too much to transit, in his view, not too little. Both the governor and the Democrats agree that they should engineer some kind of complex gas tax swap in order to get around a decades-old law that has a formula that now requires the state to give hundreds of millions of dollars to transit.

Drive Started for Ballot Measure to Suspend State's Greenhouse Gas Law

A backlash against efforts in California and Congress to rein in greenhouse gas emissions is brewing in hard economic times. A coalition of businesses — including two Bay Area oil refiners — and an anti-tax group has begun a signature drive for a November ballot initiative that would suspend California's pioneering law to combat global warming until the jobless rate drops back to 2006 levels.... California, the role of Texas oil companies in the initiative is another element in the debate over the plan to suspend the state's 2006 greenhouse gas law until the state's unemployment rate reache

HSR Tracks Likely Buried

Since high-speed train tracks will likely be buried in Millbrae, it is logical the tracks will also likely be buried in Burlingame and the northern part of San Mateo, said Millbrae Councilwoman Gina Papan last night. It was a statement with which Burlingame Vice Mayor Terry Nagel did not quite agree....It was the second night in a row Nagel spent discussing high-speed rail, as the Burlingame City Council approved spending $185,000 Monday night to spend on consultants to try and pressure the California Hig-Speed Rail Authority to bury the tracks in their city.

Senate Gives Final Approval to 9-Month Extension, $19.5 Billion for Highway Trust Fund

The Senate gave final approval this morning to a bill known as the "HIRE Act" containing seven transportation provisions including an extension of authorization for federal highway and transit programs through Dec. 31 as well as providing $19.5 billion to the Highway Trust Fund. Today's vote to concur with House amendments sends the legislation to President Barack Obama.

Alameda Land-use Ruling could Reshape State

When an Alameda County judge this month ruled that Pleasanton must loosen its development rules to allow large amounts of new housing for all income levels, he sent a message that could ricochet around the state....If the Alameda decision stands, and if other cities face legal challenges, the result could reshape the landscape of California suburbs and small cities - conceivably forcing them to reconsider height limits or increasing the density in their downtowns.

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