EDITORIAL : GRIDLOCK AHEAD?; A STATE PLAN STRESSES REDUCING DRIVING. BUT IS THAT WHAT PEOPLE WANT?THINK traffic is bad now? Well, you haven't seen anything yet.
Much of the state highway system was built during the 1960s, and the pavement pavement, the wearing surface of a road, street, or sidewalk. Parts of Babylon and Troy are believed to have been paved; Roman roads were noted for their durable stone paving. Cobblestones were common from late medieval times into the 19th cent. is nearing the end of its natural life. So Caltrans plans to spend more than $6 billion over the next 10 years to rehabilitate re·ha·bil·i·tate
1. To restore to good health or useful life, as through therapy and education.
2. To restore to good condition, operation, or capacity. deteriorating de·te·ri·o·rate
v. de·te·ri·o·rat·ed, de·te·ri·o·rat·ing, de·te·ri·o·rates
To diminish or impair in quality, character, or value: freeways and other highways statewide.
All that construction work, even if much of it is done at night or other nonpeak hours, surely will increase congestion The condition of a network when there is not enough bandwidth to support the current traffic load.
congestion - When the offered load of a data communication path exceeds the capacity. temporarily.
Meanwhile, the need to fund repairs will reduce the amount of money available to pay for new roads to accommodate anticipated population growth. That adds up to a double whammy double whammy
informal a devastating setback made up of two elements
double whammy n (col) → palo doble
double whammy n (inf for motorists.
Those observations are based on a March 5 report by Elizabeth Hill, the state's nonpartisan non·par·ti·san
Based on, influenced by, affiliated with, or supporting the interests or policies of no single political party: a nonpartisan commission; nonpartisan opinions. legislative analyst, titled ``Developing and Funding an Efficient Transportation System.'' We urge state legislators, other public officials and concerned residents to read the report, study its recommendations, consider their implications and begin making plans for the coming day of reckoning.
``Growing population, urbanization and overall driving are increasingly straining the state's highways,'' the report states. ``At the same time, transportation revenues are not growing as rapidly as demand. As a result, there is a gap between revenues and demand.''
California traditionally has tried to meet the demand by increasing the capacity of its transportation system. But Hill says the state no longer can expect to address growing congestion with increased construction.
Citing the 1997 California Transportation Plan, which recommends that demand reduction should have priority over new construction, Hill suggested a number of steps to reduce driving. She observed:
Policies that change the cost of driving, such as using tolls and taxes based on miles driven, ``can influence how much, when and where people drive.''
``Land-use policies that reduce the distances between housing, employment and retail centers can reduce growth in driving.''
Policies that make other forms of transportation - public transit, car pools, etc. - more attractive ``can increase use of alternatives to driving.''
Those ideas are mostly old hat. And like old hats, some of them don't fit today's realities, such as the need to improve the routinely congested con·gest·ed
Affected with or characterized by congestion.
congested ENT adjective Referring to a boggy blood-filled tissue. See Nasal congestion. 101-405 freeway interchange in the San Fernando Valley San Fernando Valley
Valley, southern California, U.S. Northwest of central Los Angeles, the valley is bounded by the San Gabriel, Santa Susana, and Santa Monica mountains and the Simi Hills. .
Besides that, attempts to increase taxes - witness the campaign to roll back vehicle license fees - or move commercial uses closer to residential areas rarely are popular. They thus may be impractical im·prac·ti·cal
1. Unwise to implement or maintain in practice: Refloating the sunken ship proved impractical because of the great expense.
The report by Hill appears to represent a sincere attempt to respond to a serious problem within the framework of the adopted transportation plan. Whether the plan itself accurately reflects what most people want or expect - assuming they have ever heard of it - is something else.