ClimatePlan’s Commitment to Investment without Displacement

April 04, 2019

California is in the midst of an affordability crisis. Without careful planning and policies, new investment in existing neighborhoods or ongoing disinvestment in areas where low-income people live can push lower-income and people of color out of their own communities and away from jobs and transit. This exacerbates historical inequities, forces more driving and climate pollution from those who have the highest propensity to ride transit, re-segregates our towns and cities, and destroys natural and agricultural lands. ClimatePlan recognizes that displacement threatens to undermine all of our network’s priorities including climate, equity, health, active transportation, and conservation; it is a central challenge to building a more sustainable and equitable California.

Displacement harms people and communities and worsens the climate crisis. Recognizing these profound impacts, beginning in April 2018, ClimatePlan convened partners from housing, transportation, land use, equity, conservation and climate organizations to develop a shared policy platform on Investment Without Displacement for guiding the ClimatePlan network’s advocacy. Over 20 participants worked collaboratively to develop the approach and solutions outlined in the document linked below.

The ClimatePlan network’s vision is to create a healthier, more sustainable California, where people of all backgrounds and incomes have the opportunity to thrive.

Click here to view the document.

Creating Sustainable Communities and Landscapes

Recommended practices and tools for local collaboration on climate-smart growth

Published: October 8, 2018

By the Strategic Growth Council

The State of California has a rich history of environmental leadership. With some of the most beautiful landscapes and fertile soils in the country, we have much to protect and conserve. As the State’s population grows towards fifty million people, infrastructure demands place intensified levels of stress on California’s agricultural and natural wealth. In order to address these challenges, California has led the charge nationally to reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions, because we recognize that this battle is not only about the environment – it is also about protecting the well-being of our families and communities. To ensure the prosperous future of our State, we must shift to a more conscientious approach to land use planning in California – one that balances the needs of conservation and development. In order to balance these priorities, the State has put new laws in place for new housing and infill development, community resilience, economic growth in urban and rural areas, and set an ambitious target for carbon neutrality by 2045 that relies upon efficient and orderly growth across California.

Developed through a collaboration among the Strategic Growth Council, the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research and the California Association of Local Agency Formation Commissions (CALAFCO), this paper is intended to help support coordination among local entities to advance efficient growth and conservation of natural resources. The document highlights case studies in which LAFCos, cities, counties and special districts successfully partnered to reduce suburban sprawl and increase the conservation of natural and working lands, while also considering how to improve community resilience. It also aims to raise awareness of available tools and resources that can be used to create more environmentally and economically sustainable communities throughout California.

California, State of. “AnnouncementCreating Sustainable Communities and Landscapes: Recommended Practices and Tools for Local Collaboration on Climate-Smart Growth.” CA.gov, Strategic Growth Council, 8 Oct. 2018, www.sgc.ca.gov/news/2018/10-08.html.

Read the paper by clicking here.

Evening Hours on Light Rail Gold Line Extended!

June 14, 2018

A win for the Sacramento region! 

While light rail trains on the Gold Line previously stopped running before 7:00 pm, they will now run until 11:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 9:30 p.m. on Sunday!

How did this come to be?

Ten years ago, ECOS brought a lawsuit against Caltrans when it proposed adding lanes to Highway 50 to create High Occupancy Vehicle (“HOV”) lanes. Since these lanes are only restricted to High Occupancy Vehicles during certain hours, adding new lanes for this purpose is essentially just a widening of the freeway.

Freeway-widening induces urban sprawl, increases Vehicle Miles Traveled, increase greenhouse gas emissions and does not reduce traffic congestion after all.

That lawsuit was settled in 2008 when Caltrans agreed to pay $7.5 million to SacRT for improved light rail service between Folsom and Sacramento, along the Highway 50 corridor.

In 2017, Caltrans again proposed to create HOV lanes by adding more lanes to Highway 50 without adequately dealing with induced demand for sprawl development and additional miles traveled. Again, ECOS sued.

ECOS met with SacRT to determine what funding from settlement of this lawsuit would help public transit the most along this section of Highway 50, and it was determined that expanding light rail service past 7:00pm would be best, so Caltrans settled by agreeing to provide funding for that purpose.

At ECOS, reducing vehicle trips is an essential part of our work, and new service like this goes a long way toward helping us reach our goals. This project will open up car-free options to many people, as trips that were only possible in a vehicle are now possible via public transit. We are proud to be a part of this effort.

LAFCo Hearing May 2 re Elk Grove Expansion

Dear Advocates for Farmland and Wildlife, as summarized by our partner, the Friends of Swainson’s Hawk:

It is time again to stand up for sound planning. LAFCo will hold a hearing on whether to reconsider their 4-3 decision 2/7/18 to allow a landowner Sphere of Influence amendment to Elk Grove. This approval to allow conversion of 1,156 acres of farmland is actually a huge change in planning for growth. The staff report recommends denying the reconsideration hearing due to lack of new information. Reconsideration has been requested both by Suzanne Pecci (Elk Grove resident) on water issues, and by environmentalists on a number of issues.

You can help by sending an email to LAFCo Commissioners commissionclerk[at]saclafco[dot]org urging that the Commissioners grant a reconsideration hearing because the issues are big and complex and there are 22 significant and unavoidable impacts of the decision that won’t ever be fully mitigated. These include negative impacts on farmland and agriculture in Sacramento County.

It is always helpful for people to show up at the hearing to show their concern and interest.

Here is the link to our webpage with more references. You can find our letter asking for reconsideration there and also the link to the staff report.
http://www.swainsonshawk.org/Kammerer99.html

PLEASE COPY US ON YOUR EMAIL at swainsonshawk[at]sbcglobal[dot]net.

Thank you for your support.

Del Paso Park Open Space Under Threat

March 16, 2016

ECOS has reviewed rehabilitation plans for Renfree Field and its potential impact to the adjacent Del Paso Park. We have taken a position of opposition to the utilization of Del Paso Park open space for overflow parking and we request that further study of alternatives be undertaken prior to any decisions.

Read the letter by clicking here or on the image below.

del paso capture