Los Angeles Times
Saturday - September 24, 2005
With the option to expand Westside freeways and surface streets
pretty much a thing of the past, the remaining options to address
congestion are to build mass transit or do nothing. As to those
"shortsighted politicians and NIMBY Westside residents"
referred to in your editorial, I'm sure that for years they have
weighed the question of what the financial cost and impact of building
mass transit would be.
Perhaps now the question should instead be: What is the financial
cost and impact of doing nothing? Doing nothing is no longer a viable
KENNETH S. ALPERN
President, the Transit Coalition, L.A.
Twenty-three-mile-long tunnels through the mountains in order to
relieve traffic congestion at a cost of billions you're kidding,
right? If ever there was an idea demonstrating the poverty of current
thinking about our automobile obsession, this is it. It's time to
remove fantasy from public policy debate about the design for our
cities in the 21st century the notion that we can continue
single-passenger, longdistance commutes from suburbs to job sites
in the coming decades with falling supplies and rising prices for
fossil fuels. Infrastructure that enables this behavior is a recipe
We need to pull the transportation problem back into the mix of
overall community design and start thinking seriously about re-localization
of our neighborhoods, with public transportation as the connector.