Index
Monday
Oct142013

LOCAL GOVERNMENT (Burbank): Bob Hope Airport, proposed new, larger terminal: "New terminal at Bob Hope Airport would be two-thirds larger than old one"....

***Following up on earlier item noted here (plan for possible new terminal building at Burbank Bob Hope Airport)....

* Los Angeles Times:  "New terminal at Bob Hope Airport would be two-thirds larger than old one" - "The proposed building would have the same number of games as the existing terminal, 14, but would provide better accessibility for disabled, larger waiting areas and expanded screening areas." - From the LAT:

The new terminal planned for Bob Hope Airport would be as much as 68% larger than the existing facility, officials said.

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Dan Feger, the airport's executive director, said the size of the new terminal might eventually be reduced, but the current square footage will be used in the project's environmental impact study, which is slated to begin before the end of the year.

The existing terminal is 80 years old and would be demolished after the completion of a new terminal to create more space between it and the taxiways. Airport officials say a new terminal is needed because the existing building is too close to the runways — 250 feet instead of the 750 feet required by Federal Aviation Administration safety standards.

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Feger said that in a best-case scenario, the project would go before Burbank voters in summer 2015. Measure B, passed by local voters in 2000, requires voter approval before a new terminal can be constructed. If approved, the replacement terminal would be completed in five to seven years..................

Sunday
Oct132013

SACRAMENTO: Legislative action, approval, veto: Brown signature, SB 7, public works projects, withholding of state funds; Brown veto, AB 1229, inclusonary housing legislation; Brown veto, AB 1373, extension of statute of limitations, filing for public safety death benefits.... 

***Gov. Jerry Brown action relating to several controversial pending bills.....

* Sacramento Bee:  "Jerry Brown vetoes inclusionary housing bill"

* Sacramento Bee:  "Jerry Brown signs prevailing wage bill for charter cities"

* Sacramento Bee:  "Jerry Brown vetoes public safety death benefits bill"

Sunday
Oct132013

L.A. CITY HALL: Los Angeles World Airports, use of ridesharing companies at LAX, enforcement (non-enforcement?) of regulations: "Ride-sharing companies dodge restrictions at airports"....

* Daily Breeze:  "Ride-sharing companies dodge restrictions at airports" - From the DB:

When Derek Pugh must go from Los Angeles International Airport to his home in El Segundo, he often uses a mobile phone application to connect with a driver for UberX — one of a handful of tech-savvy car services now popular among the under-40 crowd. But the pickups usually must be arranged somewhat surreptitiously. Drivers call and ask Pugh to wait in unusual places, such as in front of the Iberia Airlines sign at the airport’s main international terminal or between Terminals 1 and 2. Then, when the car pulls up, Pugh, 28, often puts his own luggage in the trunk and sits in the front seat. “That way,” Pugh said, “it really looks like they were picking up a family member.”

Pugh and the drivers must sneak around because most UberX drivers do not have proper permits to pick up passengers at LAX. As with major competitors Sidecar and Lyft, UberX drivers generally use their own cars to earn extra money shuttling passengers around the Los Angeles area. Everything — from ordering to payment — is done electronically through mobile phones.

Proponents of what’s called the sharing economy cheered in September when the state Public Utilities Commission created a new class of regulated transportation companies, clearing the way for the three firms and others like them to operate statewide. The decision rendered moot a cease-and-desist notice — which no one actually followed — sent by the Los Angeles taxicab administrator, who had warned the companies they were not licensed to operate in the city.

 

Most saw the decision as carte blanche for ride-share drivers to pick up customers anywhere in California. But that’s not true. The decision left intact regulations that allow airports to decide who may pick up on their property. And according to LAX rules and regulations, casual ride-sharing drivers may not pick up passengers in the Central Terminal Area. Drivers breaking the guidelines can receive administrative citations from the Los Angeles World Airports Police. (Airport rules still permit anyone to drop off passengers.)

 

It is not clear, however, whether Airport Police are actually enforcing the rules........................

Sunday
Oct132013

POLITICS/TRANSPORTATION (Orange County): Transportation Corridor Agencies, approval, $2.4-billion bond sale, refinancing of debt: "Agency clears way to refinance troubled O.C. toll roads".... 

* Los Angeles Times:  "Agency clears way to refinance troubled O.C. toll roads" - From the LAT:

The leaders of Orange County's largest tollway system cleared the way Thursday for a $2.4-billion bond sale designed to shore up the sagging finances of one of its highway networks. Proceeds from the bonds will be used to refinance the Foothill-Eastern system, where the Transportation Corridor Agencies operates the 241 and 261 tollways. The roads, which course through the hills of east Orange County, have been performing below their ridership and revenue projections. Studies indicate that without a refinancing, the Foothill-Eastern highways would default on their debt payments.

On Thursday, the Foothill-Eastern board approved a revised cooperative agreement with Caltrans, which maintains the highways and will take control of them once their debts are retired. The pact is a prerequisite for the bond sale and was necessary because the refinancing will extend the toll collection period and the time when Caltrans can take them over from 2040 to 2053.................

Sunday
Oct132013

L.A. CITY HALL: Los Angeles World Airports, mass transit service to LAX, editorial: "Mass transit, meet LAX.  Maybe."....

***Following up on earlier item noted here (LAX, possible on-airport ground transportation center)....

* Los Angeles Times (editorial):  "Mass transit, meet LAX. Maybe." - "The latest ideas from Los Angeles World Airports and the MTA may work, though planners have a long way to go."

What do travelers arriving at Los Angeles International Airport want to see on their way to baggage claim? Mayoral candidate Eric Garcetti said he knew: Disney characters. Mickey and Minnie, Donald and Goofy, maybe even Chip and Dale. Because they were created here. They are Los Angeles. They'd tell you that you had arrived.

But let's face it, that's low on the list of priorities for most travelers. When a visitor arrives at LAX today, his or her first question is unlikely to be "Where are the people in the mouse and duck outfits?" but rather "Why is this city so dysfunctional?" Trying to find the subway into town, for instance, visitors may hear rumors of the Metro Green Line, which has a stop somewhere in the general neighborhood of, but most definitely not in, the airport. They may hear that it can take them by rail to the city center or to Hollywood. It's out there. Somewhere. Now call me a cab.

Los Angeles spent millions of dollars on a rail system to get arriving passengers just close enough to the train to be irritated. For departing travelers, it's the same thing. Either find yourself a ride to the airport or take a bus there, or get dropped off at Union Station. From Union Station you can get on the Blue Line. Transfer to the Green Line. Take it to the Aviation stop, and you're still not at LAX. Drag the luggage, shepherd the kids, get off the train and find the bus.

This ineptitude must end. It really doesn't matter which theory or urban legend is correct: the taxi lobby rose up to fight plans to bring rail to the airport; the FAA was concerned about security and wouldn't let mass transit anywhere near terminals; the MTA meant to go all the way to LAX but ran out of money; the airport was still mulling a master plan and the rail couldn't be completed until terminals, runways and passenger depots were built out.

If Los Angeles can spend billions of dollars on rail but can't use it to get people to and from the airport, it simply can't do anything. But don't give up quite yet. Planners and thinkers at Los Angeles World Airports and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority have begun working together in a way they previously did not. . . . . . . . .

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LAWA and LAX still face months of planning and decision-making, not to mention a public outreach process and buy-in from two federal agencies. For now, though, they seem to be moving in the right direction................