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    A look at urban issues in the Bay Area and beyond

What’s Happening With California’s High-Speed Rail System

May 20, 2014 By Ben Tripousis and Boris Lipkin
California's high-speed rail project, which will connect Los Angeles to San Francisco in under three hours, is making progress on numerous fronts. There are updates surrounding the project's construction, routes, funding, lawsuits and new business plan.

Show Us the Money: How Will Cap and Trade Revenues Be Spent?

May 6, 2014 By Laura Tam, Sustainable Development Policy Director
Between 2013 and 2020, California will earn between $12 billion and $45 billion in cap-and-trade revenue. The state has already received hundreds of millions of dollars from auction revenues over the last 18 months, with that number poised to be in the billions annually within a few years. Now the state needs to decide: How will the money be spent?
Fort Mason Community Garden. Photo courtesy of Flickr user greychr

San Francisco’s New Urban Agriculture Program Up and Running

May 5, 2014 Eli Zigas, Food Systems and Urban Agriculture Program Manager
After many months of planning, San Francisco’s new urban agriculture program launched in January . The program, designed to coordinate and increase the city’s support for city farmers and gardeners, recently released details about its first year priorities.

Can We Make Bay Area Transit Make Sense?

May 1, 2014 By Ratna Amin, Transportation Policy Director
SPUR recently hosted a charrette to look at how we can make the region’s array of transit operators function more like one clear, understandable system. Transit operators, regional planners, transporation experts and private transportation providers gathered to share what they've learned and where the opportunities lie.

Bringing Water Consumption Down as the Drought Heats Up

April 22, 2014 By Keith Tanner
As California grapples with one of its worst droughts in recorded history, many in the Bay Area are wondering what should be done to ensure that we have sufficient water. Luckily, water agencies in our region are already leading the way on innovative approaches to reduce demand by fostering water conservation and efficiency. Here's what's working.

Diridon Station: Big Investments, Big Opportunities

April 9, 2014 By Julia Chang and Alyssa Kies
Regional transit projects planned for San Jose's Diridon Station could make it one of the Bay Area’s most important transit and development hubs — if the area around it is planned well. The city has released a draft version of its Diridon Station Area Plan, which will shape the future of the area. SPUR has reviewed the plan and made a number of important recommendations.

VTA Breaks Ground on the Bay Area’s First Bus Rapid Transit Line

April 7, 2014 By María Gabriela Huertas Díaz
After years of planning, the Santa Clara–Alum Rock Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project broke ground on Friday, March 21. This is the first of three BRT lines that the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority is developing in the South Bay — and the first BRT line in the Bay Area, pulling ahead of planned projects in San Francisco and the East Bay.

How Did Your State Reps Vote on Food and Ag Bills?

April 7, 2014 By Eli Zigas, Food Systems and Urban Agriculture Program Manager
Across California, communities have started food policy councils so that local advocates for food producers and consumers can work together to improve the food system. Earlier this year, a coalition of these groups published an analysis of legislators’ voting records on 10 different food and agriculture bills.

Devil's Slide Coastal Trail: An Inspiration for Ocean Beach

April 1, 2014 Maria Bakali, Ocean Beach Project Intern
After a 20-year public process, a project to convert a landslide-prone portion of Highway 1 into a multi-use coastal trail is finally complete. The new Devil's Slide Trail welcomes hikers, cyclists, horse riders and dog walkers. With its similarities to erosion-damaged sections of the Great Highway, Devil's Slide offers a model for implementing some of the recommendations in SPUR’s Ocean Beach Master Plan.

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