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In This Issue

June 30, 2021

“It takes action, not only words, to shape the future”

Skyler Harris, Youth Leadership Academy Peer Coordinator

California Plans a Housing Infrastructure Spending Spree

Funds would accelerate infill development across Sacramento region to help achieve region’s climate goals

In his May budget revision, Governor Newsom proposed investing $500 million to boost regional land use plan implementation; and the legislature doubled down by upping that investment to $600 million in the adopted, but not yet signed, state budget. Every region in California must develop a regional land use plan called a Sustainable Communities Strategy that acts to underpin the respective region’s Metropolitan Transportation Plan and is a critical piece to reining in greenhouse gas production from the transportation sector. This massive boost in funding would allow regions to be more proactive in boosting development and projects that help increase mobility and/or decrease greenhouse gas production. An Administration fact sheet explains that the “new funds will provide grants to regional entities for transformative and innovative projects that implement a region’s sustainable communities strategy and help achieve goals of more housing and transportation options.”

In the Sacramento region, the funding would be used to boost development in existing, or infill, areas. Cities and counties have already identified priority infill development areas that need improved sewer, water, and other infrastructure to realize new development. Those prioritized areas have been designated Green Zones as part of the regional Green Means Go pilot program. The pilot program was established this month by SACOG’s board to accelerate development and boost travel options in areas that already have some existing development. The board further directed that racial equity and inclusion, as well as economic equity, be considered in the program’s funding guidelines. READ MORE

Managing One of the Region’s Worst Bottlenecks

I-80 causeway project gets $86 million federal grant

If you’ve ever traveled between Davis and Sacramento, you know the frustration that is the Yolo causeway. And if you feel like it’s been getting worse lately, you aren’t imagining it; that segment is ranked in the top three worst in the region in increasing congestion delays.

But good news is coming for the 150,000 vehicles a day that travel that corridor. The stretch of I-80 from west of Davis all the way across the causeway to Natomas and downtown Sacramento just got a $85.9 million boost from the U.S. Department of Transportation in the form of an Infrastructure for Rebuilding America grant. With the grant, Caltrans will be adding 17 miles of managed lanes, improving technology including ramp metering and changeable message signs, and revamping bicycle access on both sides of the causeway. “This project will benefit the entire region by reducing congestion and greenhouse gas emissions, improving transit operations, and enabling smoother travel across the Yolo Bypass,” shared Yolo County Supervisor Don Saylor. READ MORE

Something for Everyone: Placer County Reinvents Transit

New services launching across the county

Placer County has a lot going for it: FBI statistics name Placer communities as among the safest in the state, it’s one of the few counties in the state to have population growth, it is working on its first ever Parks and Trails Master Plan, and it has FBI statistics name Placer communities as among the safest in the state, it’s one of the few counties in the state to have population growth, it is working on its first ever Parks and Trails Master Plan, and it has “Placer-ized” best practices for housing. And now, something for everyone with transit pilot projects across the county.

Placer is reinventing transit across the county and through multiple agencies, but not just by expanding to a new street or changing a timetable. Multiple agencies are collaborating to shift to on-demand service, launch shuttles for recreational users, and use transit as an economic development tool to drive recovery from the pandemic.

Three pilots have launched, or are about to, in various parts of the county. READ MORE


The Future Looks Bright

A new group of Youth Leadership Academy students graduate

With a new group of intelligent and passionate Youth Leadership Academy (YLA) graduates, the Sacramento region has a lot to look forward to. YLA students have shown yet again how smart and talented they are, and how much they have to offer. Through the program, students learned about the principles and history of transportation and land use planning, local government processes, and community advocacy. Through the workshops and by applying their own skills, students then developed various final projects including bettering a community park, equal pay campaigns, equitable transportation, transforming community spaces, health equity, and environmental justice. The overall outcome is a group of young leaders ready to make change in their communities. READ MORE

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