A hundred years ago, if you asked people how their transportation system could be improved, most would have said they wanted a faster horse. It was not until Henry Ford came to town, paved a mile of road, and let them drive a Model T, that they realized they did not want a horse at all.
We believe we are at the cusp of a similarly profound paradigm shift in mobility and it is time for us to create a new model that enables people with such a variety of mobility choices that they need not own a car at all.
We see fertile ground to transform our relationship with cars thanks to new technologies, shifting Millennial preferences, the needs of retiring Baby Boomers, the emergence and popularity of the sharing economy, and the changing nature of how we connect and create community.
Our goal is to lift up Southern California as the best national example of a region that is striving to solve the first-mile/last-mile connection problem by:
• Highlighting the potential of shared mobility services
• Making it easy and appealing to live and/or work without the need to own a car
• Making mobility services available in lower-density and lower-income neighborhoods
• Reducing trips and greenhouse gas emissions
• Providing affordable access to opportunity for people of all ages and incomes.
We are a partnership of local and national nonprofit organizations and funders:
Natural Resources Defense Council
Shared-Use Mobility Center
FAST (Fixing Angelenos Stuck in Traffic)
Urban Land Institute Los Angeles
Climate Urgency Can Be LA's Opportunity: Zane and Parfrey in the LA Daily News
Gov. Jerry Brown made it clear in his State of the State address that climate change is a major priority. His three climate goals promise to transform California: by 2030 half the state’s electricity will come from renewable power, by the same year homes and buildings will be 200 percent more efficient, and in the next 15 years the state will reduce its use of petroleum by half.
“If we are to have any chance of stopping potentially catastrophic changes to our climate system California must — as it does in many areas — show the way,” he said. No sooner had the governor declared his objectives than we learned that 2014 had been the warmest year on record — and part of a consistent pattern of increased warming the past decade.
In an opinion piece in the Daily News Move LA's Denny Zane and Climate Resolve's Jonathan Parfrey talk about how LA Mayor Garcetti, LA Metro, other agencies, and LA County voters have stepped up and continue to step up to address this challenge. It's a "happy alignment of priorities [that] may result in a 4-in-1 victory where the region can reduce traffic congestion, strengthen the regional economy, alleviate air pollution and also fight climate change," they write.
Read more. (Photo from the Daily News.)
White House Recognizes Project Labor Agreement and Career Construction Project Success LeDaya Epps
LeDaya Epps hit a few roadblocks in life and couldn't find reliable work and the income she needed to take care of herself and her three children.
Then she completed a union apprenticeship in construction through Metro's Project Labor Agreement and Career Construction Project programs — one of only two women to do so — and now she's part of the crew building the Crenshaw/LAX light rail line as a member of Laborers Local 300. And now she's invited to be a special guest of the First Lady at the State of the Union address!
LA Metro is the first US transit agency to implement a project labor agreement and construction career policy, which help people who live in economically disadvantaged areas find jobs and training opportunities on Metro construction projects. To date, approximately 140 apprentices in various trades have been used on the Crenshaw/LAX project. “I am proud that our groundbreaking programs are being recognized by the White House,” said Metro CEO Arthur Leahy. “LeDaya Epps and others just like her represent the promise that Measure R tax dollars can be used not only to build projects, but also to build sustainable careers for Los Angeles County residents."
Photo by Luis Inzunza/Metro: Metro CEO Art Leahy, Metro Board Member Jackie Dupont-Walker, LeDaya Epps, U.S. Labor Secretary Thomas Perez and James Martinez at the Crenshaw/Expo Yard earlier this year.)Read more
LA TIMES: Audit Finds Ontario Airport Worth Much Less Than LA Is Asking
The LA Times reports that in Ontario's legal battle to gain control over LA/Ontario International Airport, a new audit contends that the sale price offered by Los Angeles is inflated by at least $181 million. If Ontario wants the airport back, Los Angeles officials have said, the Inland Empire can buy it for about $400 million. LA/Ontario is a valuable asset, they say, and Los Angeles World Airports, which has operated the airport since 1967 along with Los Angeles International and Van Nuys, must "be made whole" and recover its investments.
But Andre Cronthall, attorney for Ontario, says an audit of airport financial records suggests that LAWA has invested dramatically less than what it has claimed, greatly undermining LA's claims that it is somehow entitled to hundreds of millions of dollars. The audit contends that Los Angeles airport officials double-counted about $4 million in debt and failed to subtract investments that were repaid. It also claims Ontario is not obligated to pay back $128 million raised from airline passengers to build new terminals and other facilities.
KPCC: LA Leaders Slow To Tackle Affordable Housing Challenges
On KPCC: New York Mayor Bill de Blasio recently announced a 10-year plan to build 200,000 affordable housing units. In San Francisco, voters approved a ballot measure to build or refurbish 10,000 affordable units by 2020. But in Los Angeles — by some measures the least affordable big city in America — there is no concrete plan on how to increase housing for low-income residents. The mayor has been all but silent on the issue, and LA City Council members haven't taken steps to fix it either.
The Affordable Housing Trust Fund has been decimated — dropping from $108 million in 2008 to $19 million this year — because of declining funding from the federal Housing and Urban Development Department, and because Governor Jerry Brown disbanded the Community Redevelopment Agency. City Councilmembers Mitch O'Farrell, Felipe Fuentes and Gil Cedillo have proposed a solution: direct funds from old CRA districts into the Affordable Housing Trust Fund . . .
DREAMING BIG ABOUT MEASURE R2 IN SOUTH LA
Discussions are underway about a possible sale tax measure on the 2016 ballot that could provide $90 billion or more for transportation projects in LA County, and Move LA is working with the Urban League, West Angeles CDC and the Urban Design Center to stage a very real public conversation about what that money could fund. That conversation takes place in South LA this Saturday at the newly modernized campus of Southwest College, where we'll be encouraging people to dream big.
Metro CEO Art Leahy to Leave Agency in April; Oversaw Nation’s Largest Transit and Highway Public Works Program
A news release from LA Metro on Tuesday said that Metro CEO Art Leahy has resigned and that his last day will be April 5, when his current contract expires after 6 years of service. Move LA wants to acknowledge Art Leahy for his exceptional work implementing the Measure R sales tax program for transportation, which is funding one of the largest public works programs in U.S. history.
Six projects moved to construction during his tenure as CEO: an extension of the Orange Line to Chatsworth has been completed, the Expo Line to Santa Monica and Foothill Extension of the Gold Line to Azusa may be completed before he leaves, and the Regional Connector and Purple Line subway extension to Century City are now underway. During his tenure he also brought $3 billion in federal grants and loans to the agency, and disadvantaged and minority workers were able to get construction jobs and apprenticeships because of Metro's Project Labor Agreement and Construction Careers Program.
Metro's The Source blog wrote that "Today Metro has transit and highway projects and programs valued at more than $14 billion, eclipsing that of any other transit agency in the nation."
Art worked his way up from bus driver to director of operations for LA Metro, where he oversaw bus operations and activation of the Blue Line before taking a job as chief executive of the transit agency in Minneapolis-St. Paul and then becoming chief executive of the Orange County Transportation Agency. Under his leadership both of these agencies and Leahy himself garnered top national transit industry honors.
Move LA Executive Director Denny Zane notes that one of his first conversations with Art Leahy, upon Art's return to LA Metro, was about a book written by investment banker Felix Rohatyn entitled Bold Endeavors: How Our Government Built America, and Why It Must Rebuild Now. "It was a sign that Art understood the significance of what he was doing," Denny says. "It gave me increased confidence that Art was the right guy for the job."
Read more on The Source and in the LA Times.
The Nation: Switch to Lyft Because of Uber’s Bad Behavior? Or Transition Uber to a Worker Collective?
Would it be possible to create a real sharing company by socializing ownership — so that profits go to drivers doing the real work? What if the sharing economy meant creating worker collectives with profit-sharing, shared decision-making and the local control that would make a company more responsive to local conditions?
Streetsblog: Congress Trims TIGER But Doesn’t Hack It To Pieces
Both the House and Senate have passed the spending bill that funds government operations through the end of fiscal year 2015 — and the US Department of Transportation’s TIGER program survived! (TIGER has provided significant funding for LA’s rail lines, bike/ped and other transportation projects.) Republicans had proposed cutting the program by 83% and limiting spending to only roads, bridges, ports and freight rail. TIGER was trimmed from $600 million this year to $500 million in 2015. but the House did not get the ban on funding for active transportation that it had wanted. Here are the top line numbers:
Vancouver Looks to LA for Insight on Transit Referendum From “One of the Continent’s Most Successful Pro-Transit Coalitions”
And that coalition is Move LA, according to the Globe and Mail! Denny Zane told the reporter Frances Bula that while a sales tax is not the ideal way to pay for transit, it is the most politically saleable, as was evidenced by polling done before the decision was made to put the Measure R half-cent sales tax for transportation on the LA County ballot in 2008. Denny added that a vehicle levy would have made more sense by making it more expensive to drive and thereby changing the choices people would make, but that polling showed that people really didn’t like vehicle fees.
“There wasn’t clear evidence why,” Denny said. “The only thing we could conclude was that it’s paid in one lump sum, while the sales tax is paid in small increments. Our key criteria [when the referendum was being planned] was what would raise enough money to matter and [what was] politically viability. The sales tax scored high on both.”
The Globe and Mail story said that Move LA has become a model for other cities in Canada and the United States, especially Vancouver as it braces for its own transit referendum in March. The Globe and Mail is Canada’s largest national newspaper.