The Collector: Richardson Grove, Last Chance Grade, and Visions of a Self-Driving Dystopia

Richardson Grove Project Has Another Day In Court
Caltrans is defending the big truck accommodation project on multiple legal fronts. Based on the arguments heard yesterday, it seems they could have avoided a lot of this trouble by just allowing another public comment period for the revised Environmental Impact Report – but transparency for this project is beginning to seem like the agency’s kryptonite.

Hearing on Speed Limit Reduction Set for Tuesday
As we’ve reported previously, the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors will hold a hearing on Tuesday about a Caltrans proposal to lower the speed limit on a small section of road to the south of Richardson Grove State Park. We hear that this item will be heard at around 10 am, but as of this writing the agenda has not yet been published. In any case, come out and have your say!

Humboldt Transit Authority Moving Forward with Solar Panels, EV Buses
At its meeting Wednesday, the Board discussed changes to a contract to build a solar electric system at its headquarters over the next few years, designed to provide energy for charging new electric buses. The first electric bus has been purchased and is expected to arrive by the end of the year.

Last Change Grade Gets a Down Payment, Studies to Start This Summer
The new $5 million from the state is enough to get geotechnical and environmental studies for the massive project started…barely. But Caltrans is moving full speed ahead!

Fortuna Road Projects Get Funding
One is a maintenance project, the other is supposed to both “relieve congestion and provide bike and pedestrian facilities” around the Kenmar Road/Highway 101 interchange. More information about the latter project can be found here. Why does every bike/ped improvement seem to come with an even greater improvement for cars?

SB 827, Part 2
An update and spot-on analysis from the folks over at TransForm about Senator Weiner’s radical upzone bill, which we mentioned in the very first edition of The Collector.

Self-Driving Uber Trucks Have Been Using Arizona Highways for Months
Only days after a self-driving Uber car with back-up driver killed a pedestrian in Arizona, it has come to light that self-driving Uber trucks with back-up drivers are all over Arizona highways. But that’s about all Uber will say. Meanwhile…

Back-Up Drivers Aren’t Much Use for Self-Driving Cars
It turns out people just can’t stay vigilant for very long when they’re not actively engaged.

California About to Permit More Self-Driving Cars; Bicyclists Worried
It’s not hard to figure out why.

Bringing Facebook’s Business Model to Transportation
If self-driving fleet vehicles start to pay for themselves with advertising, shifting the business incentive so that Uber & Lyft want to keep you in their cars as long as possible, then we’re all in a lot of trouble.

The Collector is CRTP’s weekly transportation news roundup, published every Friday. We focus on North Coast news, but we also include relevant state, national and international transportation news – plus other items that we just find kind of interesting! To submit items for consideration, email