Your Tax Dollars at Work

First thing we do, cone Roscoe Blvd. down to one lane. Road diet!  That got my attention.

So, what’s going here? Looks important…

Looks like they’re chipping up the sidewalks.  Hmmmm….

…and filling them back in again.   There must be some reason, right?  Why would they do that over and over again up and down the arterial to the 405 freeway?

Here’s a possibility. While you sit in single-lane traffic, you get to stare at this sign.  See, SB1 is doing nice things for you, like rebuilding California.  Not wasteful things, like chipping up the sidewalk and re-pouring it.

Well, don’t be coy. What is SB1?  It is known colloquially as the gas tax.  The gas tax is facing repeal in November.

So now the gas tax lobbies you for perpetual life with your own money.  It stops your commute cold to tell you it giveth and taketh away, both nurturing mother and stern father.  Be grateful for your parents.

5 thoughts on “Your Tax Dollars at Work”

  1. Sooooo… LA has a deep and inescapable conundrum. A conundrum isn’t a “problem” that has a “solution.” A conundrum is something you can’t fix. You just have to suck it up.

    One element of the situation is that realistically you must drive in LA. Even if you live in a kinda sorta walkable neighborhood you still have to drive to distant locations for all sorts of reasons whether you like it or not. Uber and Lyft are still driving. Autonomous vehicles are still driving. Electric cars are still driving. Even the buses (God help you poor bastards) are still driving. So you want the roads to be wide, smooth, and fast flowing.

    On the other hand, there’s pent up market demand for vibrant, compact, walkable and pleasant neighborhoods where you can leave the car at home and skip the traffic and parking nightmare at least some of the time.

    But a playground or sidewalk cafe on the side of a high speed eight lane arterial surrounded by parking lots isn’t great if you’re on foot. And a bunch of narrow congested streets full of little kids, old people, and Hipsters on a pub crawl isn’t great if you’re in a car. These two environments are mutually exclusive. You have to pick one or the other. And LA simply can’t.

    Suck it up.

    1. LA is trying to split the baby by having “entertainment districts” to which you drive/park/get dropped of. Once there, you walk around. Like Disneyland, but with derelicts.

  2. People understand wicked problems, constraints, and compromise. Formerly having business with CRLA one notices that the type of considerations one would find in a Jane Jacobs or city planning and architecture book are largely absent in big cities – machine politics drive a lot of decisions rather than practical or aesthetic considerations. It being LA/CA, marketing and promotional efforts seem to take a priority over tangible maintenance and improvement, a pathology manifested in the controversy of Lady Gaga urging water conservation at the Hurst Castle’s swimming pools also reflected in other public works projects of differing scales. There are inherent conflicts of interest that are mismanaged within the low expectations of machine politics.

    1. When you say CRLA, do you mean the Community Re-Development Agency? What business did you do with them? It’s a very opaque entity with deep resources of which the public is largely unaware.

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