From gas taxes to congestion pricing, transportation finance is often controversial. As California plans for a number of fiscal methods to fund high-speed rail and infrastructure and limit greenhouse gas emissions, ITS research into the cost, impact, and equity of transportation finance can help state and local decision-makers craft effective policy.

Martin Wachs passed away on April 11, 2021. The UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies is encouraging people to add remembrances of Wachs in the comments section of this post. Email tributes may be sent to rememberingmarty@its.ucla.edu.

Lead Scholars

Brian Taylor
Brian TaylorDirector of UCLA ITS / Professor of Urban Planning and Public Policy
Michael Manville
Michael ManvilleAssistant Professor of Urban Planning
Jaimee Lederman
Jaimee LedermanPostdoctoral Fellow

Other Scholars

Donald Shoup
Distinguished Research Professor of Urban Planning

Briefs, News, and Opinion

It’s Time to Try Congestion Pricing in L.A.
Bloomberg — 2020

Improving Transit Equity in L.A. During the Pandemic
Streetsblog LA — 2020

Column: California’s gas tax is going up again. You should be pleased
The Los Angeles Times — 2020

Cars Make Your Life More Expensive, Even If You Don’t Have One
Vice — 2020

Lessons of Los Angeles’s Transit Tax: Money Isn’t Everything
Streetsblog — 2019

What Will Be the Right Price to Cut Congestion in New York?
Wired — 2019

Congestion Pricing: N.Y. Embraced It. Will Other Clogged Cities Follow?
The New York Times — 2019

To curb traffic, cities explore implementing congestion pricing during peak hours
NBC News — 2019

Column: To beat congestion, L.A. needs to charge drivers more. But how can it be done right?
LA Times — 2019

To make transit work, does LA need to make driving harder?
Curbed — 2019

Los Angeles Passed a Historic Transit Tax. Why Isn’t It Working?
CityLab — 2019

California High-Speed Rail: A Train to Nowhere Without a Conductor
Los Angeles Times — 2018

A $100 Billion Train: The Future of California or a Boondoggle?
New York Times — 2018

Gas Tax: What Californians Actually Pay on Each Gallon of Gas
San Jose Mercury News — 2018

This Take on Congestion Pricing Might Blow Your Mind
KUOW — 2018

There’s Only One Fix for LA’s Traffic Nightmare — We All Have to Pay Up
Los Angeles Times — 2018

The Long Game on Infrastructure
U.S. News & World Report — 2018

The California Gas Tax Swap
Martin Wachs, Mark Garrett, Anne E. Brown — 2016

Selected Research Publications

Analyzing voter support for California’s local option sales taxes for transportation
Anne Brown, Jaimee Lederman, Brian D. Taylor, Martin Wachs — 2020

The Impact of ZEV Adoption on California Transportation Revenue
Martin Wachs, Hannah King, Asha Weinstein Agrawal — 2019

An Assessment of Performance Measures in the Transportation Development Act
John Gahbauer, Jaimee Lederman, Esther Huang, Martin Wachs, Juan Matute, Brian D. Taylor — 2018

Arguing over transportation sales taxes: An analysis of equity debates in transportation ballot measures
Jaimee Lederman, Anne Brown, Brian D. Taylor, Martin Wachs — 2018

Transition costs and transportation reform: The case of SFpark
Michael Manville — 2018

What motivates public support for public transit?
Michael Manville, Adam Seth Levine — 2018

Would Congestion Pricing Harm the Poor? Do Free Roads Help the Poor?
Michael Manville, Emily Goldman — 2017

Not Everything Is Broken: The Future of U.S. Transportation and Water Infrastructure Funding and Finance
Debra Knopman, Martin Wachs, Benjamin M. Miller, Scott G. Davis, Katherine Pfrommer — 2017

The California Fuel Tax Swap
Martin Wachs, Mark Garrett, Anne E. Brown — 2016

Is Rail Worth It?
Martin Wachs, Ethan Elkind — 2014

From Fuel Taxes to Mileage Fees
Martin Wachs, Ethan Elkind — 2014

Mileage-Fee Design Strategies to Reduce System Cost and Increase Public Acceptance
Paul Sorensen, Liisa Ecola, Martin Wachs — 2013

Mileage-Based User Fees for Transportation Funding: A Primer for State and Local Decisionmakers
Paul Sorensen, Liisa Ecola, Martin Wachs — 2012

Just Road Pricing
Lisa Schweitzer, Brian D. Taylor — 2010

Hybrid Electric Vehicles and Implications for Transportation Finance
Sara Hajiamiri, Martin Wachs — 2010

Recent Projects

No items found