high speed rail, a new ballpark, a BART extension, a major freeway interchange makeover, and Bus Rapid Transit.
With a world renowned high tech industry, a growing population, and those key infrastructure projects just mentioned, San Jose has recently sought the need to flex its political muscle. Assembly member Jim Beall has introduced AB 57 which seeks to increase Santa Clara County (as well as Alameda County) representation on the Board of Commissioners at the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC). As Assembly member Beall states, "about 40 years ago, the [state] legislature created the MTC and its voting membership based on a 1970 snapshot of a San Francisco dominated Bay Area. Today, the Bay Area population and employment clusters have shifted. Santa Clara County has become the technological center of the world."
Caltrans to open an office in San Jose. Caltran's 12 state-wide districts and district office map was drawn in 1961 when San Jose was one-fifth the size that it is today. VTA, the area's Congestion Management Agency (CMA) has cited the growing importance of the region as well as previous delays in getting approvals on key projects for the request. Except for the Bay Area district (No. 4), all Caltrans district offices are located in the district's largest cities. In the Bay Area San Francisco is only six miles away but San Jose, the largest city in the nine-county district is over 40 miles away.
The map below show another disadvantage in getting late to the political party. Whether it be transportation agencies, planning agencies, non-profit, or even key civic groups, not one is headquartered in Santa Clara County. Except for Caltrain's offices in the city of San Carlos, Bay Area agencies and non-profits are all located in either San Francisco or Oakland.
Until MTC representation gets resolved or a new office is opened, at least one positive change in the works is the 2012 opening of a SPUR office. SPUR is a San Francisco based urban planning and research organization that has been at the forefront of many of the city's key issues such as the central subway, park funding, a new Transbay Transit Center, the transformation of mid-Market St., as well as many others. Although a small step this will be a great first step in seeing the "power" center of gravity move further south along the bay.
To find out about future SPUR - San Jose events, join their mailing list.
View San Francisco Bay Area Agencies and Organizations in a larger map
TED News in Brief: A quadcopter cam, love from Will Smith, and more - The past few weeks have seen some extraordinary TED-relevant news items, both happy and sad. Below are some highlights. This year’s TEDGlobal included a ne...
2 hours ago