ACCESS 09, Fall 1996


Luci Yamamoto

Several years ago, I commuted to work on BART, traveling from Oakland's Rockridge station to downtown San Francisco. Although I could have used another station closer to my Berkeley home, I preferred Rockridge, with its bustling commerce, well-lit sidewalks, and village-like atmosphere. It seemed that the neighborhood's residents had easy access to everything: a variety of restaurants, a library, supermarkets and specialty gourmet shops, health clubs, bookstores, professional offices, and, perhaps most significantly, buses and BART.

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2017-05-31T22:39:59+00:00Categories: ACCESS 09, Fall 1996|

There’s No There There: Or Why Neighborhoods Don’t Readily Develop Near Light-Rail Transit Stations

Anastasia Loukaitou-Sideris and Tridib Banerjee

In 1990 Los Angeles inaugurated the Blue Line amidst much fanfare as the first increment of a long-awaited light-rail system. The rail line connects downtown Los Angeles to Long Beach, traversing twenty-two miles of the poorest and most neglected neighborhoods in South Central Los Angeles. After six years, ridership has risen significantly, but areas around stations remain unchanged - disinvested, forsaken, and decaying – denying planners' dreams of transit villages and depriving surrounding communities of their hopes for a better economic future.

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The Century Freeway: Design by Court Decree

Joseph F. DiMento, Drusilla Van Hengel, and Sherry Ryan

When the Century Freeway opened in October 1993 after three decades in the making – the product of intensive civic conflict, and advertised as the world’s most costly road at over $100 million per mile – it was indeed an achievement of the century. Ultimately it was far more than a mere road. It also became a community development enterprise, an environmental improvement program, a housing project, and a legal precedent that may well shape all future freeway construction. To assess its significance we’ve been examining the record and interviewing the participants, and we will now summarize our findings.

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Transit Villages: Tools for Revitalizing the Inner City

Michael Bernick

The Bay Area Rapid Transit system (BART) helped pioneer the development of metropolitan rail transit around the country. But did it accomplish all original goals? The initial 1956 plan primarily aimed to save old city centers and reorganize sprawling suburbs by inducing subcenters there. Spaced about 2.5 miles apart, station stops were to become points of high accessibility that would attract high-density residences, retail shops, and office employers. By reshaping the land market through transit-induced access, BART's planners sought to reshape the metropolis and to eliminate traffic congestion.

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Food Access for the Transit Dependent

Robert Gottlieb and Andrew Fisher

A prevailing myth holds that America, land of plenty, provides everyone with vast opportunities for education, mobility, and food. Yet, not everyone shares this bounty. Significant sections of the population lack a neighborhood supermarket and thus end up paying high prices for inadequate or poor-quality food. Many of them do not have cars and thus depend on a transit system that fails to provide convenient access to groceries.

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The Full Cost of Intercity Travel: A Comparison of Air, Highway, and High-speed Rail

David Levinson

In 1993, the state of California formed the California Intercity High-Speed Rail Commission to develop a twenty-year plan for service along the California Corridor, from Los Angeles to San Francisco. A high-speed rail system would cost $10 billion to $15 billion, but its advocates believe it would be the least costly mode of intercity travel in California. They emphasize that trains can travel between northern and southern California in under three hours, while consuming less energy and generating less pollution than automobiles or airplanes.

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2017-05-31T22:41:01+00:00Categories: ACCESS 09, Fall 1996|Tags: |

The Freeway’s Guardian Angels

Robert L. Bertini

Everyone knows that major sources of freeway congestion are the “incidents,” including accidents, that block free traffic flow. Other troubling incidents include stalled engines, cars that have just run out of gas, debris fallen from trucks, flat tires, strayed animals, and other random events. According to one estimate, half of all congestion is relate to incidents. With vehicles stopped on the roadway, one incident can cause others, something leading to chain reactions involving many cars. So motorists and traffic officials alike consider incident-mitigation a critical objective.

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THE ACCESS ALMANAC: Travel by Carless Households

Richard Crepeau and Charles Lave

Over the past thirty years the federal government has funded extensive programs to improve travel options for people who do not have their own vehicles. During this same period, independent of government actions, economic and demographic trends have diminished the target population and made vehicle access nearly universal, even among the poorest households. In 1969, 20.6 percent of households (HHs) had no vehicle. By 1983 this ratio had fallen to 13.5 percent. By 1990, it fell to 9.2 percent of HHs. Further, HHs without vehicles tend to be smaller than average, so in 1990 the zero-vehicle HHs comprised only 6.4 percent of the population.

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2017-05-31T23:06:02+00:00Categories: ACCESS 09, Fall 1996|Tags: , |
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