How To Make Massive Infrastructure Improvements With No Money

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's infrastructure program bumps into California's 21st century reality.
February 17, 2006, 1pm PST | Chris Steins | @urbaninsight
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"All California governors try to turn into Pat Brown sooner or later, so it’s not surprising that Arnold Schwarzenegger has now done the same. What’s surprising is not that Schwarzenegger is using Pat Brown’s legacy, but that he’s using nearly the same suburban model as Pat Brown did almost a half-century ago.

...At best, Schwarzenegger has recycled Pat Brown’s Wonder Years vision of California’s. That may help drive more funds into infrastructure construction â€" a worthy outcome in itself â€" but it’s questionable how much headway such a vision can make against the problems of a rapidly changing and intensely urban state in the 21st Century. More money for highways is fine, but in most urban areas it’s both geographically and politically impossible to expand the freeways. Vast amounts of money for new schools is great too, but there’s hardly anyplace to put them either, unless the governor is willing to lead the charge to rethink what school campuses look like, how they function, and how they interact with the communities around them."

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Published on Friday, February 17, 2006 in California Planning & Development Report
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