Thursday, May 08, 2014

Bike commuting: from 0.5% to 0.6% in only 32 years!

American Community Survey

The head in a story on Slate: "Bicycle Commuting Rates Rocket From 0.5 Percent to 0.6 Percent in Only 32 Years." Roll on, great bike revolution!

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Cost for part of high-speed rail goes up $1 billion!

The LA Times reports that the cost estimate for only one segment of the state's high-speed rail project has gone up $1 billion and that the bullet train won't be able to make the SF to LA trip in two hours and 40 minutes as promised to voters in 2008:

Louis Thompson, chairman of the High-Speed Rail Peer Review Group, a state-sanctioned panel of outside experts, testified that "real world engineering issues" will cause schedules for regular service to exceed the target of two hours and 40 minutes. The state might be able to demonstrate a train that could make the trip that fast, but not on scheduled service, he told lawmakers...Thompson's assessment came as lawmakers consider a proposal by Gov. Jerry Brown to allocate $250 million in greenhouse gas taxes to the controversial project next year, and a third of all the revenue from so-called cap and trade revenue in future years. If all of the greenhouse gas fees were allotted to the bullet train system, it would leave a shortfall of up to $16 billion in required construction funds, Thompson said...

Thanks to Kevin Drum for the link.


Sit-lie ordinance not about the homeless

Photo by Eric Risberg

A letter to the editor in the May 7 Chronicle:

Not about the homeless

The United Nations report denouncing sit-lie laws as inhumane solutions for homelessness (U.N. takes stand against 'sit-lie' laws, May 4) makes the mistake of believing that the city's Civil Sidewalk Ordinance attempts to rid San Francisco of "the homeless."

The 2010 ordinance was passed by voters to give the police a tool to deal with violent persons or groups who colonized the public sidewalk. Haight Street, the Castro and other walking neighborhoods faced a major safety crisis from wandering gangs of young people preying upon residents and visitors alike. It was not about homelessness.

The people have a right to insist they feel safe when walking on city streets.

Ted Loewenberg, 

San Francisco

Rob's comment:
Yes, the sit-lie ordinance was about street punks who sleep in Golden Gate Park and occupy Haight Street during the day to panhandle for money for alcohol and drugs, much to the distress of Haight Street merchants and local residents. It had nothing to do with housing.

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Warriors GM: Blathergate

The Warriors fired Mark Jackson. That was essentially all Bob Myers had to say to reporters the other day. Since he had nothing to add to that basic bit of information---like why Jackson was fired---he should have just issued a press release. Instead he blathered on about "In regards to the direction we want to head in...moving forward...," blah blah blah.

His performance recalls other vacuous presentations by Gavin Newsom and Marshall Foster

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