FROM Dan Sturges
Expo Line and Hyperloop The long-awaited Expo Line extension to Santa Monica opens this weekend. It’s the culmination of 20 years of work by activists, legislators and transportation planners and engineers, and promises a 45-minute ride between downtown LA and downtown Santa Monica. But what’s the next step once you get to station? Santa Monica’s Mobility Manager explains. While many Angelenos are revving up for the first train to the beach in over 60 years, some transit dreamers are working on a vehicle that would leave light rail in the dust. Last week the LA company Hyperloop One conducted a test of the concept for rapid travel initiated by Tesla founder Elon Musk. It involves propelling passengers in pods through a vacuum tube at a speed of about 600 miles per hour and would cut travel time between LA and San Francisco to a half hour. So while we’re celebrating the extension of the Expo Line, should we be focused on newer transit technology? Is the future of a travel a marriage of the public and private sector?
LA to Las Vegas… by Rail? Since 2007, a company called XpressWest has been pushing for a bullet train from Los Angeles to Las Vegas along Interstate 15. It hasn't been able to raise money from private sources or get a loan from Washington. Now it's proposing a new, somewhat longer, route, making the trip by way of Palmdale, and a group of Chinese companies has come up with $100 million.
Metro Considers a "People Mover" from Crenshaw to LAX Today, Metro decided to consider the cost and usefulness of a “people mover” running to LAX from a new station on the Crenshaw line. It’s not the first time the plan has been discussed, but it seems to be picking up some momentum.
The US gets deeper into Middle East wars. What's the endgame? President Trump welcomed Egypt's President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi to the White House today… just one of the changes in America's approach to the Middle East since Barack Obama left office. We hear about that and the escalation of warfare as well as civilian casualties.
Will the march for science politicize objective research? Protesters are gathering all over the country for tomorrow's Earth Day March for Science. Since President Trump has proposed massive cuts in basic scientific research, will the movement be perceived as partisan politics — whether scientists themselves like it or not?