California’s civil infrastructure was once the envy of the nation. During the 1950’s and 1960’s the state wisely invested in transportation, water and power infrastructure, delivering capacity well in excess of the needs of the state’s population at the time. Even today, the scale of California’s network of aqueducts and pumping stations to transfer water from north to south, east to west, is one of the largest in the world, and California’s vast network of interstate freeways has few rivals.
Moreover, Californians in that era had planned to continue to expand these infrastructure assets to accommodate a growing population, but that all came to a halt in the 1970’s. During the 1970’s not only were the plans for additional water storage and distribution assets abandoned, but state-owned right-of-ways and land acquisitions both for water and transportation were sold to private interests. California now has a population of 40 million people living in a state with civil infrastructure designed to accommodate 20 million people.
The new political alternative to infrastructure development is conservation. By zoning ultra-high density infill in urban… Read More