In the most recent edition of the San Francisco Urban Planning and Research Association's publication, The Urbanist, two articles strengthen the already solid case for high-speed rail in California. The articles were written initially for an America 2050 research seminar sponsored by the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy and Regional Plan Association this spring. Not only can the state afford to fund the project, argues SPUR Regional Planning Director Egon Terplan in "Getting High-Speed Rail On Track," but two of the state's most influential industries - the Hollywood media and entertainment industry and Silicon Valley technology sector - would be knit more tightly than ever before by a high-speed rail system that would realize "the economic potential of enhanced access and exchange across the state," a benefit discussed detailed in Executive Director Gabriel Metcalf's "Hollywood Vs. Silicon Valley."
Northern CaliforniaThe high quality of life, cultural heritage, and environmental assets of the Northern California region make it an attractive - and expensive - place to live. How can sustainable land use strategies be employed while limiting the skyrocketing cost of living?
Location: Northern California, along the Pacific Ocean from Sonoma County to Monterey County, inland to Douglas County, Nevada. Includes the 9-county Bay Area and 17-County Commute Shed.
Principal Cities: Oakland, Reno, Sacramento, San Jose, San Francisco
Population 2010: 14,037,605
Population 2025: 16,350,872
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- Build support around the country for an ambitious national infrastructure plan in the areas of transportation, energy, and water.
- Identify and prioritize the key infrastructure priorities in the megaregions, which can act as building blocks to a national plan.
- Create megaregion coalitions to support these megaregion priorities and begin coordinating with each other.
Download the Summary of Megaregion Forums.
Download a PowerPoint about the Forums.
By Chris Benner, University of California, Davis and Manuel Pastor, University of Southern California.
Since the civil rights movement of the 1960s, a growing regional equity movement has recognized the consequences of urban sprawl and regional causes of poverty and successfully built political power at the scale of metropolitan region. Now, with increasing attention to social and economic factors at the megaregion scale, this paper asks whether equity proponents must shift their attention outward and upward.
View photos from the most recent America 2050 Forum in Sacramento, California on December 2, 2008, featuring speakers Darrell Steinberg, Rep. Matsui, Rep. Blumenauer and Paul Rosenstiel.
The forum, titled, "Investing in America's Competitiveness: An Infrastructure Strategy for the Nation and the Megaregion," will bring together 100 leaders from the business, civic, government, and academic communities in the Northern California megaregion to discuss a national and megaregional agenda for infrastructure investment that could shape the economic recovery plans of the Obama Administration and the new U.S. Congress in 2009.
The forum is hosted by a collaboration of Northern California civic and government organizations including the Bay Area Council, San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association (SPUR), Sacramento Council of Governments, Metropolitan Transportation Commission, and the San Joaquin Council of Governments, in conjunction with New York's Regional Plan Association. It will contribute to an ongoing effort to create a national infrastructure plan that could shape an economic stimulus bill and economic recovery plan next year. Leaders from the Northern California business, civic, government, and academic communities are encouraged to attend and help define this emerging federal-megaregion agenda.
Download the Agenda.
For more information, please contact Lauren Straub at the Bay Area Council at (415) 946-8727 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Gas is $4 a gallon and we still have congestion" said Jim Spering, Solano County Supervisor in California recognizing that clogged roadways and reduced productivity must be addressed at a much larger scale. More than one hundred leading transportation experts from the Bay and Sacramento corridor gathered on Thursday, April 10th, to explore the possibility of coordinating transportation plans at the megaregion scale in an attempt to attract funding for projects.
In a parallel effort, the San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation and Imperial Valley EDC received a $225,000 grant to spearhead a study that aims to develop a megaregion framework for global competition. The U.S. Department of Commerce's Economic Development Administration awarded the grant, which will cover the two southern California counties and the Northern Baja California, Mexico region.
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