It seems that it takes years and years to build anything in Los Angeles. Are workers slower? It is hot here, after all. Is money an issue? We may or may not still be in a recession. Or is it because someone always seems to have a problem with something and files a lawsuit, which can takes years to resolve. Let’s go with the latter.
Well, the proposed downtown football stadium is such a large project that it could produce the mother of all lawsuits, and not just one. The project could be delayed for years. But now it appears that won’t happen, speeding the time that you can head to your favorite online sportsbook to bet on your local Los Angeles football team.
On Tuesday Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill that would expedite all legal challenges to Farmers Field. The law does not exempt builder AEG from environmental laws, but it allows challenges to the stadium’s environmental impact report to bypass Superior Court and go right to the California Court of Appeal, which would make a decision within 175 days, a relatively short time in matters such as these.
In exchange for an expedited legal review, AEG has pledged to build a carbon-neutral stadium with more public transit users than any other stadium in the country and has committed to making Farmers Field one of the only stadiums in the country to have a net-zero carbon footprint.
I’m not sure how they’re going to have “more public transit users than any other stadium in the country” in a city with very little public transit, but whatever; this is a huge step towards getting this stadium built.
Now all we need is a football team. Minor detail.
About a year ago on that crazy early November day when it was 97 degrees, a friend of mine from Alaska (she nearly melted) was in town. Gazing at the Hollywood sign from my balcony, she spotted something on the side of a building far off in the distance. “Is Cirque du Soleil here?” Nah, I said. She insisted the sign she saw looked like an ad for the flying circus folks. I got out my binoculars (which I use for bird watching, of course) and sure enough it was indeed an ad for an L.A. Cirque du Soleil show.
On Sunday, a year later, the show “Iris” has finally opened at the Kodak Theatre. I am not a huge fan of Cirque du Soleil — the one show I saw in Las Vegas did have some naked chicks which was nice, but it also had one dude kissing another dude, eliciting groans from the audience, even the women. But this is a huge event in our fair city so I figured I would mention it.
Tickets are readily available. The show runs through the end of the year.
The “good hands” people at Allstate have made official what anyone who has spent any time in Los Angeles already knows — Angelenos are among the worst drivers in the nation.
The insurance company’s “America’s Best Drivers Report” released last week finds that the average American driver will get into an accident roughly every ten years. Not here in sunny Los Angeles, though; drivers here get into a crash once every 6.6 years. That places it second worst among cities with more than a million people (behind Philadelphia) and 18th worst among the 200 cities in the study. That means Los Angeles drivers are 50% more likely to get into an accident than the rest of the country.
That seems about right. I mean, I love Los Angeles, but… drivers here are awful. The infamous “road rage” incidents have left Angelenos with a reputation of being aggressive drivers. That cannot be further from the truth; rather, they are not aggressive enough. I can’t tell you how many times I (an admittedly aggressive driver) have sat behind someone going too slow in the left lane. One slow driver like that can clog up an entire highway or street. It’s as if they don’t know the rules.
Then there are the drivers who are looking for an address so they go five miles an hour. Just pull over! You are not walking on the street. You have to maintain a reasonable speed.
That goes to how discourteous LA drivers are. They don’t care about anybody else on the road. It’s all about them. And God forbid you have to change lanes — they will never let you in.
I am not the only one who feels this way. There is the aptly named blog L.A. Can’t Drive that highlights the failings of the city’s drivers.
It’s shocking, really; for a city built around the car, you’d think people here would know how to drive. Well, you’d be wrong.
I was going to stop writing about my objections to the Wilshire subway — I really had nothing more to say. I think it will cost too much precious money, will take too long to build and will not impact traffic on our clogged streets. But my main objection is that unless there are several North-South lines connecting to it, it is just an East-West line that will only serve the people who live within a few blocks of Wilshire.
But then I got this comment on a previous article:
Honestly, you are very uninformed regarding the wilshire subway. please do some research before you spew. No further connections to the Wilshire subway? hmm interesting. what would you consider the proposed 405 line, the Crenshaw line, the connection with the expo line in Santa Monica?
Okay, I don’t know everything, so I took the suggestion and did “some research.” Guess who’s uninformed?
This “proposed 405 line” is nothing but a dream right now. As Mayor Villaraigosa told Curbed LA in July, “a subway underneath the 405 is in measure R (the voter approved measure to commit $40 billion to traffic relief over the next 30 years).” However he added, “I’m not aware of any plans right now other than what we’ve done.” Which is nothing. This line is not even close to the planning stages.
“The Crenshaw Line” is actually getting closer to being built. According to the Metro website, this line will run from the Green Line’s Aviation/LAX station to the intersection of Exposition and Crenshaw where it will meet up with the Expo Line. It will NOT continue up Crenshaw to connect with the Wilshire subway. In fact, there will not even be a station on the Wilshire subway at Crenshaw. That station was in the original plans, but the powers-that-be decided there was not enough of a population there to support a station.
This is another example of the lack of common sense among decision-makers in Los Angeles. Why not continue the Crenshaw Line all the way to the end of the boulevard at Wilshire where it could have connected with the subway? It boggles the mind, just like the decision not to build the “Subway-to-the-Sea” to the actual sea.
Which brings us to “the connection with the Expo Line in Santa Monica.” Where exactly would that connection be? The subway will not even run all the way to Santa Monica, dead-ending at the VA building in Westwood for some reason (see above, “lack of common sense”).
Yes, I am certainly uninformed.