Since I arrived here in March, I have come to appreciate the delicate tapestry, make that irregularly stitched quilt, that is the Bay Area. The diversity of locales, attitudes and interest make the region fascinating, but at the same time, not entirely cohesive.
I recently learned that while LA may be a transportation nightmare, at least the place is unified, for the most part, into one municipality of 3 million souls inside one mega-county of 10 million. Standardizing something like a fare system is a snap. Want to build mass transit? The machine will get it done, no matter how egregious the cost overruns, waste, fraud and abuse.
Here in the Cities by the Bay, however, we have a rapid transit system that works on one fare system connecting three dozen other transit agencies, each with its own peculiar way of Read the rest of this entry »