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damientalks's podcast

SGV Connect is Streetsblog Los Angeles' podcast that explores the people, places, projects and events that make up the changing face of transportation in the San Gabriel Valley. SGV Connect is hosted by Damien Newton and includes interviews by Brian Velez. This feed also hosts SGV Connect's predecessor podcast, #DamienTalks.
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Now displaying: March, 2016
Mar 22, 2016

Welcome to this week's episode of #DamienTalksSGV, where we talk with Glendale Mayor and Metro Boardmember Ara Najarian and Bike SGV Executive Director Wes Reutimann about the proposed sales tax measure that Metro unveiled last week.

The measure extends the current county-wide half cent sales tax passed eight years ago and adds another half cent to the tax. If passed, there will be a full cent on the county sales tax dedicated towards transportation.

But it is not the tax itself that is interesting, but how it will be spent. Read more about the proposal at Streetsblog Los Angeles or visit Metro's webpage dedicated to the proposal to learn more. Also, we interviewed Najarian about what he would like to see in the proposal in January. You can here his answers, here.

In this broadcast, we see two different points of view that could dominate the discussion over the next few months as Metro and the L.A. County Board of Supervisors debate whether or not to put this proposal on the fall ballot. Najarian is effusive in his praise for the work Metro staff did. He is happy that his favorite project, the second phase of the Gold Line Foothill Extension, is included in the project list and that his least favorite project, the extension of the I-710, is not.

On the other hand, Reutimann is worried that such a long-term sales tax includes such a small slice for bicycle and pedestrian safety projects. While recognizing how the projects, especially more trains and buses running through the valley, could change regional transportation; Reutimann stopped short of endorsing the measure as it is.

#DamienTalks is supported by Foothill Transit, offering car-free travel throughout the San Gabriel Valley with connections to the new Gold Line Stations across the Foothills and Commuter Express lines traveling into the heart of Downtown L.A. To plan your trip, visit foothilltransit.org. “Foothill Transit. Going Good Places.”

 

Mar 21, 2016
Last week, Streetsblog California announced three new pieces of legislation, introduced by Assemblyman Richard Bloom who represents West Los Angeles County cities in the Assembly. Bloom's legislation focuses on increasing the housing stock in California by reducing the hurdles to creating "Granny Flats" and strengthening density bonuses for developers producing affordable housing and market-rate housing.
 
Today, #DamienTalks with Jason Islas, the editor of Santa Monica Next, who wrote last week's piece on the legislation for Streetsblog California. Islas puts the legislation into a local context and explains the connections between housing policy, transit expansion and livable streets.
 
It just so happens, the Bloom, who won the first "Elected official of the year award from Streetsblog California, is being honored at a joint Streetsblog/Next event later this week in Santa Monica. To get tickets to this event, click here.
 
We’re always looking for sponsors, show ideas, and feedback. You can contact me at damien@streetsblog.org, at twitter @damientypes, online at Streetsblog California or on Facebook at StreetsblogCA.
Mar 15, 2016

Last week, activists from around California and the rest of the country gathered in Washington, D.C. for the national bike summit. During the summit, the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition (LACBC) was honored for the "best winning campaign" of the past year for its work on getting the City of Los Angeles to pass and approve a progressive mobility plan.

Today, #DamienTalks with the LACBC's Executive Director, Tamika Butler, and Planning and Policy Director, Eric Bruins, about the campaign. The two discuss not just why it's important to have a plan that emphasizes creating safe places for people to walk, bicycle, take transit or just be outside; but also the importance of lasting coalition building.

To paraphrase a point that Bruins makes, it's not just about building a coalition for the plan; but creating meaningful dialogue with community partners about a shared vision of a more mobile, equitable, clean and just pleasant city. 

We’re always looking for sponsors, show ideas, and feedback. You can contact me at damien@streetsblog.org, at twitter @damientypes, online at Streetsblog California or on Facebook at StreetsblogCA.

Mar 3, 2016

Today, #DamienTalks to Habib Balian, the CEO of the Gold Line Foothills Construction Authority and Amy Wong with Women on Wheels.

This weekend, the long-awaited extension of the Gold Line to the San Gabriel Valley Foothills will finally open. Balian discusses the advocacy and work that led to the extension and the excitement that the line will be open soon. It is likely that any sales tax on the fall ballot will include another extension of the Gold Line, so Balian and his team are preparing in the eventuality that funding becomes available in 2017 for an extension all the way to Montclair.

Our second segment features an interview with Amy Wong of Women on Wheels (WoW.) WoW works to create safe spaces and events for female bicycle riders to meet, have fun, and improve their bicycle skills. Wow has a couple of events coming up, a social on Sunday, March 13, and the LA to SGV: Sister Cities Ride & Mechanics Class with the Ovarian Psycos on Saturday, March 19.

#DamienTalks is supported by Foothill Transit, offering car-free travel throughout the San Gabriel Valley with connections to the new Gold Line Stations across the Foothills and Commuter Express lines traveling into the heart of Downtown L.A. To plan your trip, visit foothilltransit.org. “Foothill Transit. Going Good Places.”

Mar 1, 2016

Two for the price of one!

Today #DamienTalks with a pair of Southern California bicycle advocates, BikeSD's Samantha Ollinger and the Bicycle Cultural Institute's Nona Vornado.

#DamienTalks

First, #DamienTalks with Ollinger about the exciting plans for Downtown San Diego. The City Council will vote next week on a plan to add 9.3 miles of protected bikeways and 5.5 miles of pedestrian greenways to the two square miles that make up Downtown San Diego. Once implemented, San Diego would leap past pretty much everyone for safe streets planning in the urban core.

However, it's not a done deal. If you live, work, or play in San Diego, you can click here to get your voice heard. If you want to read more, here's last week's story on San Diego's plans in Streetsblog USA, based on research in Next City.

Next #DamienTalks with Nona Vornado about the upcoming Los Angeles Bicycle Festival. Tickets are on sale now:$10 for individuals and $15 for families. There are lots of goodies for people who buy their ticket *in March*. For more information click here for the Festival's webpage, here for the Facebook page or, ya know, just LISTEN TO THE PODCAST.

We’re always looking for sponsors, show ideas, and feedback. You can contact me at damien@streetsblog.org, at twitter @damientypes, online at Streetsblog California or on Facebook at StreetsblogCA.

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