The Antiplanner is flying to San Antonio today for the first leg of a three-city trip to talk about smart growth and rail transit. Early next week will find me in St. Petersburg, followed by three days in Austin.
Tomorrow–Thursday, September 4–I’ll be speaking to the San Antonio Tea Party about what the city should do now that it has decided not to build the streetcar. The meeting is from 6 pm to 8 pm at the Old San Francisco Steakhouse, 10223 Sahara Drive.
I’ll try to post St. Petersburg and Austin meetings here soon.
The Antiplanner is in the Twin Cities this week giving presentations on land-use and transportation issues in that region. Here are the sessions, most of which are open to the public:
- “Thrive Planning vs. the American Dream,” sponsored by the SW Metro Tea Party, Chanhassen Recreation Center, 2310 Coulter Blvd., Chanhassen, 7:00-8:30 pm, Monday, August 4
- “Rebalancing Transportation Planning,” sponsored by Expose the Truth, Dayton’s Bluff Recreation Center, 800 Conway St., St. Paul, 5:00-8:00 pm, Tuesday, August 5
- “Transportation and Your Business,” sponsored by the MetroNorth Chamber of Commerce (must pre-register), Harvest Grill, 12800 Bunker Prairie Road, Coon Rapids, 11:15 am to 1:15 pm, Wednesday, August 6
- “The Folly of High-Speed Rail,” Goodhue County Fairgrounds, 8:00 pm, Friday, August 8
By coincidence, the Antiplanner’s faithful ally, Wendell Cox, will also be speaking in Minneapolis about the Thrive plan at 7:30 am, Wednesday, August 6 at the Doubletree Hotel Park Place, 1500 Park Place Blvd., pre-registration will save money if done by noon, August 5.
If you are in the Twin Cities area this week, I hope to see you at one of these events.
The Antiplanner is attending a conference on driverless cars near San Francisco this week. The first session, on Monday afternoon, dealt with the process of developing standards and best practices.
In 2009, when I was writing Gridlock, my main recommendation was that someone should convene a working group to write such standards. I suggested that the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials lead the process, but I should have known that a better group would be the Society of Automotive Engineers. In any case, I’m glad it is getting done.
Today there will be a session on implications of driverless cars for regional planning. Since most regional planners seem stuck in the early twentieth century, it will be interesting to see what the presenters propose.
The Antiplanner is heading to the Cincinnati area today to talk about sustainability planning, toll roads, and streetcars. The meeting is apparently open only to homebuilders, but if you are there, I look forward to seeing you.
On Sunday, April 27, the Antiplanner decided to try to do something about the 58,000 phony users (sometimes called “sploggers”) who have signed up on this site, so I installed a new plug-in. Today, I received a few comments on this morning’s post about Christchurch, but this evening, that post is gone. Last week’s post about traffic in Ethiopia is also gone.
I don’t know if the new plug-in caused the problems or if my server somehow lost the posts in a back up. I checked Google’s cache, the Wayback machine, and other sources; Google remembered that there was a Christchurch post but no longer had it in its cache. I apologize for any problems and hope that more posts don’t disappear in the future.
If anyone cares, I can probably re-create the Christchurch and Ethiopia posts, though of course I can’t re-create everyone’s wonderful comments. Are any other posts missing? Has anyone seen any other problems on this site I should be aware of?
The Antiplanner is flying to Salt Lake City today to speak at a legislative forum tomorrow sponsored by the Sutherland Institute. The topic will be Utah’s 30-year transportation plan. Since the Antiplanner is skeptical about our ability to know things even five years in advance, you can imagine what I’ll be saying about a 30-year plan.
Thursday, I’ll be in Olympia, Washington to speak at a Senate Governmental Operations Committee work session about growth-management planning. My main message will be that growth-management created many more problems than it solved. Most important, according to Coldwell Banker, the price of a 2,200-square-foot house in Seattle is more than three times the price of a similarly sized house in Houston.
Friday I’ll be in Lake Oswego, Oregon, talking about a proposed “high-capacity transit” line to Tigard, Oregon. The term high-capacity transit is a joke, as Portland’s light-rail system can’t run more than two cars in a train (due to the city’s short blocks) and no more than 20 trains an hour. At 150 people per car, that’s 6,000 people per hour. A good busway could move nearly ten times that many people.
In any case, if I get a chance, I’ll try to post some updates over the next few days.
The Antiplanner is flying to Washington DC today to testify at a hearing tomorrow on federal grants for transit capital projects, also known as New Starts. My testimony will summarize my recent paper on the subject: that the New Starts grant-making process gives transit agencies incentives to choose high-cost solutions; that buses are superior to rails in almost every place agencies want to build new rail lines; and that transit riders suffer when agencies cannibalize their bus systems to pay for the rails.
A winter storm has cancelled and delayed flights in some parts of the country, but so far the Pacific Northwest remains clear if a bit cold. Travel safe and have a happy Thanksgiving wherever you are.
The Antiplanner is flying to Boise today to speak to Boise State University Students for Liberty. I’ll be talking about public lands and wildfire issues tonight at 7 pm in the student union. If you are in Boise, I hope to see you there.