Today’s Headlines

  • Great Piece from the Mercury News on Caltrain Board’s Lack of Engagement, Rubberstamping
  • Sacramento Jury Awards $16 Million to Woman Hit by Driver in Crosswalk (News10)
  • SF Supes Put Off Decision on Park Merced Development (City Insider)
  • Peter Calthorpe, Save the Bay’s David Lewis Debate Redwood City Saltworks Project (Merc)
  • Elly Blue: Building Biking and Walking Infrastructure Will Help Solve Our Health Crises (Grist)
  • Nat Ford Meets Again in Closed Session with the SFMTA Board; No Decision (SF Examiner)
  • Gavin Newsom Wants to Run for Governor Again (Matier & Ross)
  • PUC Construction on Grove and Baker Creates Some Hazards for Bicyclists (BIKE NOPA)
  • Hans Larsen Named Permanent Director of San Jose DOT (Mercury News)
  • Taxi Drivers Not Happy with Proposed Regulations in Santa Rosa (Press Democrat)
  • Governor Ends Budget Negotiations with Republican Leaders (LAT)

More headlines at Streetsblog Capitol Hill

  • Mercury News hit the nail on the head. What is that board even doing? I’ve always thought that it isn’t much of a fiscal emergency when you are constantly in a fiscal emergency. Year after year, cut after cut, fair hike after fare hike and here we sit in another, even worse, fiscal emergency. Yet they never debate, never suggest, never question.

    Much like the J/14-Mission discussion going on, why is it that the riders are the ones who have to come up with ideas on how to make the service work? What the hell are we paying these people for?

  • Ford: “I know what’s going on with Caltrain just as much as I know what’s going on with my own agency.”

    Wow the truth sucks. 🙁

  • Nick

    Why do they even need to consider buying out Ford’s contract? Is he really that bad that they can’t work with him?

    It makes the MTA Board look like fools if they just approved a 3-year extension for him to stay.

    5 years should be long enough to qualify or disqualify someone for a job. If the MTA Board can’t figure that out, they should all just resign.

  • jd

    Yeah, I don’t know what Caltrain’s board’s problem is … they really don’t seem to have any really creative ideas or problem-solving skills. The discussions right now regarding Caltrain should be about improving service, electrifying, adding wi-fi, adding more bike capacity, improving real-time signage at stations and online, little improvement tweaks here and there, etc. Instead we are trying to keep the rail line from shutting down entirely! That is definitely poor management … and not just on Caltrain’s part, but VTA, Muni, and SamTrans. Everybody has been slacking in my mind. They have no incentive to improve public transit because we as citizens demand priority go to automobile infrastructure. So though these leaders are certainly at fault for the current situation, so are the people for not being better advocates and supporters of public transit. Although, now with the Caltrain’s most recent (and most serious) financial crisis, we finally see people taking notice and demanding they do a better job. About time.

  • SteveS

    TehchCrunch reports that David Chiu is working on a plan to replace the city payroll tax completely, eliminating the need to cut special deals like the mid-Market zone.

    http://techcrunch.com/2011/03/29/city-tax-battle-isnt-about-a-two-year-break-aits-about-repealing-the-payroll-tax-completely/

  • “The discussions right now regarding Caltrain should be about improving service, electrifying, adding wi-fi, adding more bike capacity, improving real-time signage at stations and online, little improvement tweaks here and there, etc. Instead we are trying to keep the rail line from shutting down entirely!”

    If they had been focusing on those tweaks over the last 8 years, the ridership would be 25% higher and we wouldn’t be having these discussions. They put in the bullets, ridership went up. They put in more bullets and creative limited/local service, and ridership went up. Then they ran out of steam because they are “train guys” and little things like “Insisting that the MTC have enough Clipper readers and add-value machines at the stations before launching the system” just aren’t even on the radar.