Metropolitan Transportation Plan Update

On November 7, 2019, the Environmental Council of Sacramento (ECOS) submitted comments on the recently proposed update to our region’s Metropolitan Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy (MTP/SCS). These comments were submitted via one letter solely from ECOS, and a joint letter from both ECOS and 350 Sacramento. Below is an excerpt from our comments, followed by links to PDFs of both letters.

The Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG) has put forth a sophisticated Metropolitan Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy (MTP/SCS), a regional plan that the region’s jurisdictions should follow. While this regional plan is not a strong as we feel it could be, the 2020 MTP/SCS is a viable strategy for the region to meet its regional greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets mandated by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) per Senate Bill 375 (2008).

The plan represents a reasonable compromise between what the region could accomplish if the political will existed, and the reality of much more expansive car-oriented, low-density growth that is actually being actively pursued by some of the region’s jurisdictions on the ground. ECOS would prefer a greater percentage of transportation investment to non-auto modes, and a much more compact land use footprint than proposed. The Sacramento region is not meeting its mandated GHG reduction targets because local jurisdictions are not complying with the strategy that SACOG has laid out for them, and the State must do more to ensure compliance of local authorities to our Sustainable Community Strategies, as well as to ensure the State’s own investments are aligned with its climate laws.

Click here to read the comment letter by ECOS on the MTP/SCS.

Click here to read the comment letter by ECOS and 350 Sacramento on the Climate Change section of the MTP/SCS, which was submitted separately.

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Editor’s note: A bridge to somewhere

By Foon Rhee
May 23, 2019
Sacramento News and Review

The I Street Bridge is 108 years old and rusty, and it rattles when a train passes over it. So, yes, a new span over the Sacramento River is way overdue. But the new bridge is not just another important transportation link between Sacramento and West Sacramento. It’s also an opportunity to make a design statement for the region.

The current I Street Bridge will stay open. The lower deck will continue to be used for passenger and freight trains, while the upper deck will be closed to vehicles and be converted into a pedestrian and bike path. The new bridge is just up river and will connect Railyards Boulevard on the edge of downtown Sacramento, and C Street in the Washington neighborhood in West Sacramento.

Click here to view the full article.

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Development controversy to Sunset

What does smart growth even mean in a rapidly developing county like Placer?

By Graham Womack
May 9, 2019
Sacramento News and Review

…controversy is brewing over one of the last stretches of undeveloped land between the three cities, known as the Sunset Area—and what the term smart growth means in Placer County.

The plan would go about 40% above the Sacramento Area Council of Government’s recommended average vehicle miles traveled for residents and employees. In addition, plans call for housing within 1,000 feet of an existing landfill. The project would also result in the removal of roughly 5,000 acres of vernal pools.

Click here to read full article.

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