After years of civic leaders trumpeting the importance of building new homes near transit and jobs, San Diego is committing to changing the way residents get to work.

The changes are part of the city’s plan, released by Mayor Kevin Faulconer last month, to combat climate change.

The plan would force the city to dramatically increase the share of people who walk, bike or take transit to work, among those who live within a half a mile of a major transit station, defined as a trolley or Coaster station or a bus station with a bus line that runs every 15 minutes or less. The plan calls them “transit priority areas” – and it hopes people living within them will largely abandon their cars as their primary mode of getting to work.

I ran the numbers with geographic information systems pro Ari Isaak, based on a list of all the stations that met the climate plan’s definition of a major transit station, provided by county planning agency SANDAG.

The verdict, based on the current definitions: The new standards will apply to roughly 60 percent of city residents.

The total area that’s within a half mile of a major transit station covers most of the city’s urban core and excludes most of its less densely populated suburban areas.


We Stand Up for You. Will You Stand Up for Us?

Altogether, the transit-area footprint accounts for 30.51 percent of city land, even though it covers 59.3 percent of city residents.

One caveat: This map reflects the area that’s a half-mile as the crow flies from each transit station. As the city gets closer to formally adopting the plan, it could decide the standards apply instead to a half-mile area based on standard driving routes, which would make for a smaller footprint.

The plan has an ambitious goal for the 772,000 people living within a half-mile of a transit station.

It calls for 18 percent of residents to walk to work, 18 percent to bike and 25 percent to take transit.

Mike Hansen, Faulconer’s point person on the climate plan, said city staff is using a 2008 SANDAG estimate as its baseline for how people living in the newly defined transit areas get to work.

That estimate found that within a half-mile of major transit stations, 9.6 percent of people took transit, 2 percent walked and 1 percent rode a bike. Hansen expects those numbers have already increased.

Here’s a look at how that estimate compares with the plan’s goals.

One thing this analysis doesn’t account for: The city anticipates continued population growth between now and 2035, and official city policy has the city concentrating that growth in areas most likely to fall within a half-mile of transit stations.

So by the time 2035 comes, it’s likely that more than 60 percent of the city, and certainly more than 772,000 people, will live in the affected area. The physical area itself could grow, too, as new stations are added to the transportation network.

    This article relates to: Climate Action Plan, Infrastructure, Land Use, Neighborhood Growth, News, Public Transportation, Share, Transit

    Written by Andrew Keatts

    I'm Andrew Keatts, a reporter for Voice of San Diego. Please contact me if you'd like at andrew.keatts@voiceofsandiego.org or 619.325.0529.

    110 comments
    richard cardullo
    richard cardullo

    Just read the "Plan".  What a piece of general good sounding garbage.  What did it cost to produce this this bag of hot air?

    John H Borja
    John H Borja subscriber

    As we grow, we need protections. We need architects that will be build homes that will give residents a sense of peace/silence, if they want it when they come home. Even homes that are very expensive in the newest home developments in the County are not immune from noise pollution and aroma pollution. Noise is disturbing and should be shared with willing participants. Aroma pollution can also disturb. I want to go to sleep when I want to and not disturb my neighbors that want to "rock out". We all celebrate and we should be able to without unnecessarily disturbing our neighbors. If we can accomplish this, we all may be able to "live with one another".  Public transportation will be better accepted in an even more intense urban environment. Freeways are disturbing. Trolleys and busses and bicycles are romantic and utilitarian. 

    Omar Passons
    Omar Passons subscribermember

    Our government choosing to shift from one type of subsidy that promotes cars to another type of subsidy that promotes something other than cars isn't an assault on anything. It's a recognition that neither our environment nor our government's pocketbook can hold up under the current scheme. We spend with reckless abandon on more roads that must be maintained and we are in a no-win situation when it comes to fixing the problem without a major shift in the way we do business as a city.  This plan nudges us in that direction.  The very people screaming against this plan ought to be its biggest champions.  There's no need to be blinded by ideology here.  The current way costs more money than we have.  By deregulating concentrated areas to allow for growth and better transit, we are lightening the load on a municipal budget that can't afford the current system.  And protecting our environment at the same time.  This is so transparently good for the efficient running of a city that people ought to be giving the Mayor (and the iMayor and Nicole Capretz) a standing ovation.  

    shawn fox
    shawn fox subscriber

    @Omar Passons I'm amazed that you use the term deregulating here.  Is that some kind of a sick joke?  

    White Rob
    White Rob subscriber

    I believe the map severely overstates the area of San Diego that is within 1/2 mile of a major transit station.  The map appears to show areas with 1/2 mile of a rail station and/or a bus line with 15-minute headways (or less).  However, a major transit stop must have rail or TWO or more bus routes with 15-minutes headways.  From page 38 of the climate action plan:


    TRANSIT PRIORITY AREA:

    An area within one-half mile of a major transit stop that is existing or planned, if the planned stop is scheduled to be completed within the planning horizon included in an adopted Transportation Improvement Program or Regional Transportation Plan, as stated in Public Resources Code § 21099( a)(7). (A major transit stop is defined in Public Resources Code § 21064.3 as a site containing an existing rail transit station, or the intersection of two or more major bus routes with a frequency of service interval of 15 minutes or less during the morning and afternoon peak commute periods).

    Cindy Conger
    Cindy Conger subscriber

    Not sure of the 'Isaak' technology, but as a long-time Broker in RE, traveling throughout the county, there is a Major Problem with Not including transit to areas of Santee, Ramona, Julian, even to Hemet.  With both the 'ridership goals' as well as the funding.  The traffic out there has been horrendous for a decade...and the building of housing there, with little to Zero planning for businesses, centers of economic stability...continues.  The one exception is the La Mesa transit.  At an early political meeting, I think when Donna Frye was running, I met a retired transit engineer from Germany or Austria.  He said "as long as you've got the infrastructure (ie. high level rail like present for the trolley to SDSU...& beyond), you can put 'in' any kind of hi-speed transit."  He also mentioned that with our 'geology' being mostly crumbling granite and sandstone (Not the kind of sandstone that is 'stone', but that Liquifies into MUD with rain!), we'd best use the European transit, not the Asian, as it 'vibrates.'

    As far as 'funding', all you need is the Feds to 'kick in' their funding for getting the 'links' in from "any city that is serviced to go to a Major International Airport."  that's 18+ 'links' of Transit (rail, etc.), similar to Phoenix, that in less that 3 yrs. added Mesa & Tempe lines. Realize, Phoenix, SLC & other cities added a Full-Sized Airport (Two 12,500 ft. long runways Make it an International Airport).  Airports are Not built with City or County Taxes. They are the best 'returns' investment out there on private Bonds.  The 'return' for San Diego's 'Real' Airport and Transit System (far delayed for Regional Financial Stability for our Infrastructures), is Huge...in just the first few years, over $500,000,000./annually from Cargo Alone!  (from latest 'cargo flight' increases at SD's 'constrained' Airport, the number of cargo flights went from something like '6200' something in '12 to to over '20,000' in one year-'13!)  Just to pass that 'knowledge' on to the 83 or so folks that seem to be interested...

    All as our City Council is about to allow all our 'revenue generating Cargo Flights' to fly out of Tijuana's Rodriguez airport...

    Founder
    Founder subscriber

    This is just so much Eco-Propaganda, when the City Council and everyone at the City starts using mass transit then I will start to pay attention, until then this is just so much talk.

    If this were really true, then all the SANDAG FORWARD Billions should be shifted from new highway construction to funding electric and/or human powered cycling/mobility projects NOW and that will never happen since those Regional Leaders in charge of making these decisions get donations from BIG Construction!

    rcardulla@aol.com
    rcardulla@aol.com subscriber

    The San Diego Planner Dept. , in their submission of the new Community Plan for Southeast San Diego ,  which has 2 trolley stations, calls for and estimates an increase of 500 to 1,500 new homes in the next twenty (20) years. That's right NEXT TWENTY (20) YEARS.  Someone should tell the city's Planning Dept. about this new law that the Mayor wants pasted. 

    The new proposed Southeast Community Plan actually reduces density in the 1/2 mile capture area.   

    Kevin Swanson
    Kevin Swanson subscriber

    The transit plans for the Region do not support the words mouthed by the politicians. The water, energy, sewage, and transportation infrastructure do not support the development plans.

    Reality will bite the future residents in the butt unless there is new technology implementation

    Richard Rider
    Richard Rider subscribermember

    I came across the 2002 estimated cost of the [San Diego] "Mid-Coast Corridor Transit Project" -- the so-called light rail line from Old Town to points north.  It was $30 million per mile.

    http://www.lightrail.com/projects.htm#San_Diego

    Doubtless because of "galloping inflation" (geezers will recall that term -- used by President Richard Nixon to describe the 4.7% inflation in the early 70's that caused him to impose Draconian wage and price controls), naturally this project's cost today is estimated to be higher.  How much higher?  Somewhere north of $160 million per mile.  Now THAT's inflation!!

    Well, actually, it's S.O.P. -- low-ball the costs to get the project approval, get the project rolling, and only later reveal the true costs.  Liar, liar, trolley wheels on fire.

    BTW, it's fun to try to Google the current cost of the project.  The SANDAG documents bury the cost deep within the trolley-babble.  It's like an afterthought.  Furthermore, the "updated" cost is always wrong.  And it's always STILL too low.  Always.  

    I sure hope SANDAG doesn't actually PAY someone to grind out these fictitious numbers.  Sadly, they do pay -- and SANDAG pays a LOT.  A below-the-radar agency, SANDAG's pay and benefits are second to none --  outside of "public safety" employees.


    When completed, this trolley doubtless will carry only a fraction of the projected passengers. If it follows the pattern of previous trolley spurs, about 75% of the riders will be former BUS riders -- few will actually get out of their cars. One analyst friend of mine estimated that the time saved by Mid-Coast trolley riders from Old Town to the UTC shopping center (vs. using an express bus) would be about four minutes.

    Madness!

    But there's method in their madness.  And it's an evil, premeditated madness.

    Richard Ross
    Richard Ross subscribermember

    As noted below the price of oil on Friday went up again.

    Richard Ross
    Richard Ross subscribermember

    Mr Rider you omit one thing in your analysis .... As the price of fuel goes up and Ace parking raises its rates more people will move to mass transit.

    Founder
    Founder subscriber

    @Richard Rider Well said and that is just one of the "projects" that will suck-up Billions in Regional Transit funds that should all be shifted to helping people buy electric bicycles and/or mobility scooters NOW to get them out of big their vehicles.

    Richard Rider
    Richard Rider subscribermember

    @Richard Ross I've been hearing that song for 20 years.  Ain't happening.  Besides, the price of fuel is coming DOWN.  

    To the extent we need public transit, buses are the way to go -- not rail.

    Richard Ross
    Richard Ross subscribermember

    Richard Rider while I have agreed with you on many issues you are wrong on this one. If you follow the market the price of fuel will rise again.

    Beyond that if you studied the history of General Motors it was they who after WWll hired third parties to go around the country and buy up lite rail and tear it down so they could introduce their then new diesel buses.

    If you attended MTS meetings back when Murphy was Mayor their research pointed out it was cheaper to build highways for autos and buses but that in the long run lite rail was much less expensive to maintain.

    Have you risen over our pothole city streets recently?

    Go to New York, Chicago or Philadelphia and there you will see its a combination of lite long distance lite rail with with short haul connecting bus service that works.

    In more recent years Los Angelos has restored some of the lite rail that General Motors had torn up. Then go to Phoenix Arizona who surpassed us in population in 2000. They have been installing lite rail.

    Richard Rider
    Richard Rider subscribermember

    @Richard Ross Sorry, none of your evidence is persuasive.

    1.  "Other cities do it, so we should too."  Now THAT's funny! Other cities have dug themselves into deep holes with pensions, so we should too?  I think not.  You make no case that their decision was superior to buses.   None.

    2.  Our potholed streets won't be solved by light rail, unless perhaps you can make the case that we'll have so many light rail lines that we won't NEED streets.  Indeed, with all the billions (yes, BILLIONS) we are pouring into low usage light rail, we are starving our less glamorous street maintenance fund.

    3.  Even if the "evil GM" assertion is valid, it does NOT make the case that rail today is superior to buses, or even cars. 

    4.  The fact that some study touting light rail was presented in the Murphy era is anything but convincing.  Whose study? What did the study say?  How objective a study was it?  

    There have been "studies" saying subsidized pro sports stadiums are good for cities.  Total crap, as it turns out.

    Richard Ross
    Richard Ross subscribermember

    @Richard Rider as you obviously haven't studied how the combination of lite rail and connecting bus service has worked well in many large older cities nor do apparently know anything about General Motors introduction of their diesel buses your opinions on this subject are as your last sentence "Totsl crap, as it turns out."

    Richard Ross
    Richard Ross subscribermember

    Well Richard Rider and I can can agree on one thing ...after the Miami D. vrs. Chargers game ...we don't need to build a new stadium.

    Cindy Conger
    Cindy Conger subscriber

    @Richard Rider @Richard Ross Really Mr. Rider? With Gloria adding another '$4 million just to install the first 'group' of new meters...where do you think that 'administration and high tech cost' is going to come from...the people. And the people end up paying far too much now...it'll go quicker from their bottom lines, and when they start to 'notice it' from their bank accounts, behaviors will have to change because 'living elsewhere' and 'working downtown' ain't gonna get less expensive, is it?  Like the city attempting to put in a 'bus depot' in the middle of expensive high rise residences...there's just no thought anymore..except that this Will enable more of a Demand for Transit..

    Cindy Conger
    Cindy Conger subscriber

    @Richard Ross  And the Government just Completed and Paid For- Additional Transit Lines to connect Phoenix's New Airport with Tempe & Mesa, separate, but nearby Cities!

    Richard Rider
    Richard Rider subscribermember

    @Richard Ross -- You're kidding, right?  One day's price increase is a trend?  Tell me you were jesting.  Besides, I suspect most buses purchased from now on will be natural gas powered.

    Richard Ross
    Richard Ross subscribermember

    Richard Rider when it comes to kidding you are way ahead of me. From the get go I have always said future public mass transit will always be a combination of light rail and connecting short haul bus service. When the highways are shut down due to accidents the trolleys will still be running. When adult children have to take an aging parent to a dentist or doctor I am trying to picture them on a bicycle with the Founder. By the way the MTS meeting when Murphy was mayor is a matter of public record and yes you can question if their studies were accurate just as you can question just as your predecessors if the earth is round.

    Richard Ross
    Richard Ross subscribermember

    Each time I hear about increasing bicycle transit I reflect on how careless the current adult bike riders are in this city. Not all but too many do things like not stopping at stop sign intersections....riding side by side in a single lane bike path with the one outside of the bike lane in the traffic lane...then there are some who get on the trolley sit in the senior seats blocking any seniors from sitting in any of the side by side seats.

    Seeing as bicyclists are riding in the streets they should be licensed just as motorists are and those fees could help fix the paving of our pothole street city. When the violate the rules of the road they should be fined just as motorists.

    paul jamason
    paul jamason subscribermember

    @Richard Ross Richard, inattentive and reckless motorists kill tens of thousands of people every year in the United States.  There's no excuse for careless bike riding, but its impact is much smaller than careless driving.  Why are you so much more concerned with the former?

    Jamie Edmonds
    Jamie Edmonds subscriber

    If we really cared about a viable, workable, renewable energy powered solution, we'd look harder at ideas like Jpods ( www.jpods.com ), but alas, we are hopelessly wedded to the old paradigm.  Look instead to China, India, and perhaps Brazil for the ground breaking progress there as our local politicians have neither the spine nor the stomach for innovation.  I gave a short presentation on Jpods to a couple of SANDAG folks (who had previously spent 20+ years with CalTrans) and they basically said, "Great idea, but it'll never happen . . . politically."  'Nuff said.  I fear the current system has to collapse completely before these bureaucrats will ever look at true sustainable transportation solutions that really meet the needs of the people.  Maybe when oil gets to $200/barrel we will see some serious consideration, though I think the global economic collapse will be moving VERY fast by that point.  Anything resembling our current market economy propped up on debt being still extant in 2035 is a complete pipe dream.  #jpods #et3


    Sad to think that Secaucus, NJ will beat San Diego in solar powered transportation! http://www.jpods.com/secaucus/

    SDResident
    SDResident subscriber

    Dennis Oct. 29, 2014 @ 4:37 p.m.

    One thing that is never brought up in discussions about traffic/transit is increasing the amount of telecommuting. The infrastructure already exists including video conferencing on demand but employers still are stuck in the model that requires them to see the employee to determine if they are doing the work assigned. Many of the folks in traffic on the freeways could just as easily work from home if the employers would allow them.
    Employers need to figure out how to measure output not just time at a desk.

    Mark Giffin
    Mark Giffin subscribermember

    Another aspect of this. The whole premise is to reduce carbon emissions. It assumes that fuels and automobiles will be the same in 2035 that they are today.

    So say if that was not the case. That cars and fuel sources of the future would be at or close to zero emissions.

    Would we still insist on forcing people on to public transportation?

    My guess is most people that can afford a car would prefer the freedom and flexibility that comes from having one.

    Derek Hofmann
    Derek Hofmann subscribermember

    @Mark Giffin Would people continue to drive if we stopped subsidizing driving through the TransNet sales tax and if we stopped forcing developers to build more parking than the market wants?

    Mark Giffin
    Mark Giffin subscribermember

    Would love to see a survey on this subject concerning the support for public transit as well as "would you yourself use it".

    This edict doesn't seem to address the concerns of whether people would actually use it.

    "The plan calls them “transit priority areas” – and it hopes people living within them will largely abandon their cars as their primary mode of getting to work."

    Pretty long on "hope"

    Richard Rider
    Richard Rider subscribermember

    Significantly improving bus transit is a sensible decision -- especially compared to commuter rail which costs over 10 times more per passenger mile.

    But the idea that we are going to get a lot of people out of cars is fundamentally flawed for a simple reason -- we are NOT a "hub and spoke" city.  Such cities built out in the 19th century are better laid out for such transit, but CA (and ALL CA cities except perhaps San Francisco) were built out around the automobile -- with traffic freely flowing every which way.  Retrofitting non-road (a.k.a. rail) transit into our decentralized cities doesn't work.  

    And even the best bus system doesn't lend itself to shopping and multiple stops while running errands. Personal conveyance will still be the top choice for Californians.


    Richard Rider
    Richard Rider subscribermember

    @Eric Spoerner @Richard Rider Good point.  Got me there!  Though their range is limiting, both qualify as "personal conveyances."  

    Yes, I'm a tad "off topic" discussing public transportation, but that is what we spend maybe 70% of taxpayer funds on.

    Richard Ross
    Richard Ross subscribermember

    Richard actually Los Angelos had more lite rail transit prior to WWll. After WWll general motors wanted to promote their new diesel buses. They hired third parties to go around the country and buy up lite rail transit and have it torn up. In recent years L.A. tried to restore some of the old subway lines. Unfortunately in the ensuing years some buildings had been built over the old subway tunnels and their footings blocked the use of some of the old tunnels.

    We need to go back to more lite rail as the vertibrae with short haul buses as the rib cage feeding the lite rail as you see today in New York, Chicago and Philadelphia.

    Richard Rider
    Richard Rider subscribermember

    @Eric Spoerner @Richard Rider Putting aside the issue of "personal conveyance," anyone who believes these insane figures for walking and riding bikes should get in touch with my kids for an escrowed 5-figure wager (I won't be around to collect in 2035). Talk about a sucker bet!  


    Central planners arbitrarily setting ballooning percentages for riding bikes and walking to work years in the future is meaningless.  Actually LESS than meaningless, because they want to use these bogus figures as the basis for spending tons of money to spend on absurd pipe dream projections that no one should take seriously.  This is spread out California, not compact Denmark where cars are prohibitively expensive (up to a 200% tariff on car purchases).

    But one thing's for sure:  In spite of these figures being total poppycock (please, SOMEBODY put 'em in a time capsule!), the SANDAG planners will be sitting pretty, retired with their fat pensions, and facing zero adverse consequences for their gross (and I say intentional) miscalculations.

    Michael Robertson
    Michael Robertson subscribermember

    Having politicians dictate how citizens travel is an assault on freedom. Citizens should reject government attempts to tell us where to live or how to move our persons. 


    Besides, these numbers are outlandish. 1800% more people will ride a bicycle to work? 900% more will walk to work? That's just a preposterous claim. 

    Richard Ross
    Richard Ross subscribermember

    Michael, if roads are so cheap to maintain why are they in such lousy condition here in San Diego?

    Mark Giffin
    Mark Giffin subscribermember

    @Michael Robertson 

    Field of dreams.

    Build it and they will come.

    As Richard Rider points out we are NOT a "hub and spoke" city. To efficiently get around any distance in this area requires an automobile.

    That "inconvenient truth" gets ignored in the conversation


    Derek Hofmann
    Derek Hofmann subscribermember

    @Michael Robertson If citizens should reject government attempts to tell us where to live and how to travel, then do you agree that San Diego should stop subsidizing automobile travel through the TransNet sales tax and that San Diego should stop forcing property owners to build more off-street parking and more liveable floor space than the market wants?

    Michael Robertson
    Michael Robertson subscribermember

    Derek, I'm not sure what you're referring to that automobile travel is subsidized through the TransNet sales tax. Auto owners pay substantially more in taxes than they receive in benefits from the government. Roads are relatively cheap to maintain. For the privilege of driving on government maintained roads car owners pay 7-9% sales tax when they buy a car. They pay 53.2 cents per gallon of gas they purchase. They pay an annual registration fee for the car which is typically many hundreds of dollars. Plus additional miscellaneous taxes on tires, batteries and other car supplies. The net effect is the government does not subsidize cars, but generates a huge net tax income from cars. The government does subsidize trains, trolleys and subways. 
    I do agree that the government shouldn't dictate the size of houses or the number of parking spaces. Politicians shouldn't be deciding this for other people instead the free market should be determining it. 

    Michael Robertson
    Michael Robertson subscribermember

    This is impossible to prove because no government organization in the history of government has ever reported they have a surplus. Never. Ever. They will gobble as much money as they can. That's the nature of government. Ever heard of a school, fire dept, police dept, administration ever say they have unspent money? Roads do not cost 400% more to build in CA than Texas. That's the government at work. They have plenty of money. Here's a thought exercise for you. Do you think a corporation would sign a contract to build and maintain CA roads in return for being paid all the gas tax money, registration fees and sales tax from cars? ABSOLUTELY! They would make huge profits because these are ROADS. They are very low maintenance. I know the government says everything is expensive, but these are concrete or asphalt strips. They're cheap to construct and even cheaper to maintain. 

    Michael Robertson
    Michael Robertson subscribermember

    Your chart is pretty but wholly inaccurate. CA has the highest gas tax and vehicle tax in the country. In addition, it has the highest sales tax rate which people pay when they buy a car. You can read actual numbers about CA here: http://riderrants.blogspot.com/2012/11/ca-vs-other-49-states-revised-11812.html It turns out CA spends four times as much per mile of road as Texas. The union controlled government will gladly gobble up an unlimited amount of tax money to maintain roads. This works out for people like you because you can say it's never enough. If cars were taxed $10 per mile, the government would still blow all that money and you'd say the government is subsidizing car travelers.  The irony is that the massive subsidies for travel are for trains which the automobile owners are paying. But people who believe cars are evil, I'm betting you're one of those, no numbers will ever change their mind. 

    Derek Hofmann
    Derek Hofmann subscribermember

    @Michael Robertson Texas has cheap, flat, empty land, so of course it's going to be MUCH cheaper to build a freeway in Texas. That's just the nature of construction projects.

    Michael Robertson
    Michael Robertson subscribermember

    So you think CA roads are expensive because they're over mountains? That's hilarious. And I guess are prisons cost 3X Texas because CA builds all of our prisons on top of mountains? Be honest Derek. Government is a voracious beast that will eat as much tax money as you give it. I guess you just can't bring yourself to admit that government - especially one dominated by unions - is HUGELY expensive to do anything.

    Derek Hofmann
    Derek Hofmann subscribermember

    @Michael Robertson You're making an excellent case for getting the government out of road building and letting the private sector build and finance our freeways.

    Michael Robertson
    Michael Robertson subscribermember

    For the same reason SD schools are lousy and DMV lines are long. In for profit corporations employees have motivation to do a good job. If they do, they keep their job and get a raise. For government divisions they get incentives to do a bad job. If they do a bad job they don't get fired instead they get more money. They can demand more tax money, bonds or other forms of funding so they can all get raises and hire more people to do the work so it's less work for everyone. If they are efficient they will likely get LESS money the following year. Raises are typically based on time on the job and not performance so if they work hard they get no more money. 


    A great example of this was the printing office for city of san diego. They put it out to bid and the same union shop which did the work before won the bid and agreed to do the IDENTICAL work for 30% less! That's the beauty of competition. Without it, government divisions get fat and lazy because it's easier than the alternative. 

    YoLaTengo
    YoLaTengo subscriber

    @Michael Robertson "For the same reason SD schools are lousy and DMV lines are long. "


    The vast majority of parents with students in SD schools are very happy. Your elitist views appeal to a small, loudmouthed minority, and whether you like it or not, they always will.


    Furthermore, how often does the average person have to go inside the DMV? I can't remember the last time I had to actually go inside a DMV. And the rare times I've had to, I simply made an online appt. Let's not pretend that you give a hoot about those poor folks waiting outside the DMV as you pass by in your fancy car. You're just looking for something to complain about.

    Michael Robertson
    Michael Robertson subscribermember

    I don't claim to speak for the minority or the majority. I do know that SD schools only graduate about half their students. That's a dismal rate. SD government schools are low quality and torpedoing the prospects for a large number of our kids. 


    I drive a minivan so I'm not sure that qualifies as a "fancy" car. That's an ad hominem attack where you are attacking the person and not the argument. It really doesn't matter if I drive a Bentley or a Yugo. I do care about the people that have to interact with the government, but I used DMV as an example of low quality, non-responsive government division. You can substitute any other government division and the example holds true: courts, records, parking, etc. 

    YoLaTengo
    YoLaTengo subscriber

    @Michael Robertson

    Minority or majority, fortunately most people have better things to do with their time than prattle on about a "free market" utopia.


    Please don't talk to me about logical fallacies (ad hominem); it's hard not to get defensive when hypocrites like you constantly make sweeping generalizations when criticizing "government divisions." By criticizing public schools for example, you're are essentially attacking the entire teaching workforce, based on black & white libertarian propaganda. I don't believe you really care about graduation rates either. Your beef is with organized labor and nothing more.


    When's the last time you had to wait in line at the DMV? 

    Cindy Conger
    Cindy Conger subscriber

    @Michael Robertson @yolatengo, Let's just not talk about something that the City & Council..really, have 'no control' over.  The schools are run by voted in 'Trustees' and we are talking about different entities here..oranges and apples..tho no doubt, both may be 'rotten.'


    Michael Robertson
    Michael Robertson subscribermember

    Unresponsive and expensive government is my concern. Unions exacerbate that issue. Other countries have government schools that perform much better (such as Japan and parts of Europe) and the big difference is there's isn't unions there to manipulate the system which they do quite effectively. I don't fault teachers. Humans want the easiest job possible, all animals do. Government union jobs are the easiest because it's impossible to be fired, you get raises every year no matter your job performance and you get a retirement program that is 10X more lucrative than Social Security. How could anyone fault humans for desiring those jobs? 

    Michael Robertson
    Michael Robertson subscribermember

    Taxpayers would save 30% minimum if we engaged private companies to manage infrastructure. We have seen this with the small number of duties put up for competitive bidding like printing services in San Diego.

    People are surprised to learn that airports are not managed by the government in some countries.

    Cindy Conger
    Cindy Conger subscriber

    @Mark Giffin @Michael Robertson Maybe not, but when you've got everyone 'going to the Beach' as a major access point..in addition to: SeaWorld, Legoland, SD Zoo or Wild Animal Park, even the casinos..there would be a number of Very Used Routes..for tourists as well as residents. This summer is only one example...where 1/2 the City ended up at the beach..evident from the traffic & weather reports..and just think of the 'fewer drunk drivers' on the road from the casinos...or bars.

    Cindy Conger
    Cindy Conger subscriber

    @Derek Hofmann @Michael Robertson And let me tell you, the way our roads 'Haven't been taken care of' for the past 20 yrs. should show everyone that the $$$ either isn't Enough to cover the cost...or the money is being Extravagantly Misappropriated...maybe sent to the politicians that give away those Huge Contracts of Taxpayer's dollars?


    Cindy Conger
    Cindy Conger subscriber

    @Derek Hofmann @Michael Robertson But again...how is it that most of Europe is 'accessible by transit'.as well as most all of the Cities that have s similar population as, and a better economy that SD...it has to Start Somewhere...and if all of you would Wake Up to the FACTS that 1. our Transportation Hub Revenue Source...is Missing! And nearly $500 MILLION+/annually is about to go to MEXICO...taking our Cargo Flights out of Rodriguez Airport with Previously 'approved' Plans for the CrossBorder Cargo Bridge from the Border!  Check out the Land Sales there!!!!  I'd look at what SD could DO with Half a Billion $$$ annually for All and ANY of its MISSING Infrastructure, before I spend too much time worrying about bicycles.  2.  The "Federal Government Pays for any Transportation TO and FROM surrounding Cities to an International Airport" per Brian Bilbray, Twice in Public Meetings. 3. We have 18 'surrounding Cities' in SD County Alone.  4.  The Private Bonds to Buildr a Real International Airport (2 runways 12,500 feet long, on 3500 acres in East Elliott-the center of the County, demographically & geographically, with zero to 'negligible' noise impact to surrounding communities ) are the "Quickest to be Paid Off" and the "Highest Paying! 5. Aircraft fuel..is the Cleanest Fuel used..Drastically Reducing the number of Diesel Trucks (aka our 'environmental toxins, including particulates') that now Transport to & from LAX or Ontario 99% of our goods, materials & foods, dropping their Diesel Fuels on our patio furniture, our buildings & into our sleeping lungs!   6. Our 'missing businesses, mfrg. industries would then cost less!.etc..

    Richard Ross
    Richard Ross subscribermember

    Oh you mean competitive bidding like the time the city put some electrical work out to a private contractor and the contractor left a live wire on a metal bench. A person came along and sat down on the bench and was electrocuted.

    Michael Robertson
    Michael Robertson subscribermember

    My favorite philosopher is Thomas Sowell. He has an inquisitive saying "Compared to what?" There are worker error tragedies every day. Lifeguards run over people laying in the sand. A cop oversteps his authority. DEA raids the wrong house looking for drugs and kills someone. A teacher molests a student. 


    I'm not familiar with the specific incident you cite above, but one must always ask "compared to what". To assume government workers don't make mistakes either intentionally or unintentionally is wrong. The question to ask is what data is there to show that government workers are less or more error prone than non-government workers. I can't recall seeing such analysis, but since it's nearly impossible to get fired if you're government worker, my instincts are that those employed by a private company are incentivized to act better otherwise they lose their job.

    Richard Ross
    Richard Ross subscribermember

    Michael if roads are so cheap to maintain why are they in such terrible condition.

    Richard Rider
    Richard Rider subscribermember

    @Cindy Conger @Mark Giffin @Michael Robertson -- Again, you make zero case for trains vs. buses.  Indeed, suggesting that we build rail transit for seasonal demand (summers at beach) is madness.   

    Casinos?  EGAD!  The casinos provide FREE bus transportation to patrons, and pick up from a number of locations.  They meet all the transit needs with maybe 3 buses per casino.  And you want to build multi-billion dollar rail out to the reservations????  Breathtaking.