Tag Archives: highway

It’s the gas tax, stupid: “What Pa.’s higher gasoline tax will afford”

Article: What Pa.’s higher gasoline tax will afford.

The federal excise tax on a gallon of gasoline is 18.4¢.  It’s been  18.4¢ since 1993, when Clinton raised it over the dead bodies of Republicans.  Since then, it’s lost something like 40% of its purchasing power.  It’s a no-brainer to put this back to where it would have been had it been pegged to inflation like it should have been and then peg it to inflation.  That way, at least, it doesn’t lose purchasing power.  There is at least one proposal in Congress to raise it by 12¢ and index it to inflation, but that won’t pass in an election year.  

Harland Bartholomew: “Sowing the Seeds of Sprawl” via A Town Square

Bartholomew and Assoc, 1929

Article: Sowing the Seeds of Sprawl | A Town Square.

Harland Bartholomew was a transportation planner about 90 years ago or so.  He’s blamed by many for the auto-centric planning in many cities.  Certainly, he was commissioned to do “major street plans” for many cities, Oakland, Vancouver, Rochester, N.Y.,  and Los Angeles, among them, but it could be that he was just responding to demand.  After all, look at this:

Bartholomew & Assoc, 1929

No one saw this slowing down (it did … eventually) so it was not an irrational decision to plan for more automobiles and their motorized friends.

But I don’t care:  I like the art!

There is actually a good paper about this – see below.  This is where I first saw the drawings.  You can find the paper if you google around but this link should work if you are .edu.

  1. Jeffrey R. Brown, Eric A. Morris, Brian D. Taylor
    Journal of the American Planning Association
    Vol. 75, Iss. 2, 2009