Is China the Answer to LA's Transportation Funding Woes?

With L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's 'America Fast Forward' plan to fund 30 years of transportation improvements in 10 years going nowhere fast in Congress, Joel Epstein asks if the Mayor might be lining up our country's creditor-in-chief.

Epstein considers a recent report in the Los Angeles Times of a trip by Villaraigosa to China for "preliminary" meetings with the China Investment Corp. to discuss "alternative investment opportunities", and his own writing from 2010, to explore the possibility of outside investment in LA's effort to expand its transit network.

According to Epstein, the precedent for the Chinese to make such an investment has already been made in Argerntina, Asia, and Europe. California High Speed Rail Authority, I hope you're reading this too.

"There is a larger picture here: With public funds in very short supply, many transit agencies and advocates in recent years have touted the benefits of public-private partnerships in which private capital is used to help build or operate transit. Of course, that private money usually gets something in return, whether it be operating revenues or construction contracts likely to yield a return in investment."

Full Story: China Fast Forward?

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