Driving the Economy By Taking Our Hands Off the Wheel

If you are like me, you hate being stuck in traffic. But most of us don’t have a hired driver and public transportation isn’t always convenient.

Carmakers are working on what they think is a better idea — let the car do the driving.  Autonomous vehicles sound very Jetson-like. But as futuristic as it sounds, many vehicles already on our streets rely on computers. 

Jan 30, 2017 Winnie Comstock-Carlson

Tesla Flips the Switch on the Gigafactory

The Gigafactory has been activated.

Hidden in the scrubland east of Reno, Nev., where cowboys gamble and wild horses still roam — a diamond-shaped factory of outlandish proportions is emerging from the sweat and promises of Tesla CEO Elon Musk. It’s known as the Gigafactory, and today its first battery cells are rolling off production lines to power the company’s energy storage products and, before long, the Model 3 electric car.

Jan 5, 2017 Tom Randall

Comstock’s Top 10 Stories of 2016

Last year was one for the history books. But as we start the new year, we wanted to take one last look back at some of our best-performing and most-read articles of 2016. Take a look and see if you missed any of our greatest hits — or if something might deserve a second read.

Jan 4, 2017 Robin Epley

VW’s Penance for Cheating Takes Shape With California Wish List

California’s regulator that played a key role in busting Volkswagen AG for cheating on emissions tests laid out a detailed list of options for how the automaker will have to spend $800 million toward advancing cars that don’t pollute the air.

Dec 6, 2016 Dana Hull

Cash Haul

In a single generation, the Rozakis family went from having one dump truck to owning a $16 million materials transport business

In 2005, GR launched Crete Crush, a sister company to its trucking operation that includes two concrete and asphalt crushing and recycling centers, one at the company’s Rancho Cordova headquarters, and another at its 15-acre facility off Bradshaw Road in Sacramento. When the company first started, it was paying someone else to crush the concrete and asphalt that was accumulating from demolition site hauls.

Oct 18, 2016 Laurie Lauletta-Boshart

Untying The Traffic Knot

The effort to keep the Sacramento Kings in town showed what a community can do when everyone rallies around a cause. Now that the Golden 1 Center is opening and fans are coming downtown to enjoy the Kings, it’s bringing many people together again — perhaps too closely.  

Sep 26, 2016 Winnie Comstock-Carlson
(Photo courtesy of The California-HighSpeed Rail Authority)

Status Check: High-Speed Rail

In 2014, we reported on the progress of the contentious and embattled California high-speed rail project starting to take shape (“One-Track Mind” by Allen Young, January 2014). We recently checked back in with Jeff Morales, CEO of the California High-Speed Rail Authority, to see where the project is now and why it’s still making headlines.

Jul 1, 2016 Robin Epley
Asif Islam / Shutterstock.com

Driver’s Ed

Automakers go back to school to learn to build self-driving cars

Automakers didn’t build the self-driving car: Google did. That’s a big problem for them. Hoping to catch up, Ford, Toyota, and Volkswagen are betting on academics. Along with Nvidia, Samsung, Qualcomm and Panasonic, they’re each giving $300,000 to the University of California at Berkeley to fund artificial intelligence research.

Mar 23, 2016 Jack Clark
John Haswell has been a light rail vehicle technician at Sacramento Regional Transit for the past seven years.

A Clean Track Record

Sacramento RT employs approximately 941 people locally, 77 percent of whom are dedicated to operations and maintenance of the bus and light rail systems. John Haswell has been a light rail vehicle technician at Sac RT for the past seven years and says he is “genuinely and thoroughly thrilled to be working on the light rail vehicles.

Feb 26, 2016 Kelly Higdon
(Shutterstock)

Chevron CEO Blasts California Environmental Laws Governor Touts

As Governor Jerry Brown is in Paris urging other political leaders to follow his lead in curbing global warming, the chief executive of California’s largest oil company said the state’s policies “unambiguously raise energy costs and do nothing about greenhouse-gas emissions.”

Dec 11, 2015 James Nash