Capital District Transportation Committee

Bicycle and Pedestrian Task Force

Record of Meeting on August 13, 2002



Attendance: Mark Cashman (MHCC/LAB), Lindsay Childs (Guilderland Pathways), Dom De Cecco, Andy Labruzzo (Albany Co. EDCP), Kevin McLoughlin (Hudson River Valley Greenway), Doug Melnick (CDCG), Don Odell (retired planner), Don Robertson (NYSDOT Region1), John Stangle (Village of Menands), Elaine Troy (NYSDOH - Healthy Heart), Jim Utermark (The Louis Berger Group, Inc.), Ivan Vamos (NYBC), Teresa La Salle (CDTC), Jason Purvis (CDTC)





June 2002 minutes were approved.





2.1 SPOT Improvement Program (Round 2): J. Purvis distributed a summary list of proposals received. Seventeen proposals were submitted, requesting a total of $676,610. J. Purvis noted that there are a few proposals that have eligibility issues. A team of CDTC and NYSDOT staff will be meeting this week to review the proposals and provide CDTC's Planning Committee with a list of selected projects for the September Planning Committee meeting.  J. Purvis gave task force members an opportunity to comment on the selection process.  J. Purvis noted that the following categories are looked at in the selection process: Safety Benefit, Overmatch, Budget Sensitivity, and Regional Distribution, in addition to other factors. Several task force members felt that the guidelines for projects be more specific.  Members did not support ranking projects from lowest to highest cost.

2.2 Greenway Trail Event/Opening of Albany Pedestrian Bridge: K. McLoughlin reported that the bike tour was successful.  Participants completed the trek in 10 days with a mixture of walking, biking, and hiking, on existing routes and trails.  Participants saw many opportunities for existing and potential routes.  A group of 6-30 participated.   The group was included in the first procession across the new pedestrian bridge.  K. McLoughlin extended his thanks to local participants who joined the tour on the last day.  A virtual tour of the event will be available on the website in the future.




3.1 Greenways Grant for Regional Bike Trail: J. Purvis announced that a Regional Outreach meeting will be held at the Menands Firehouse on October 29th at 7:00 p.m..  An announcement will be sent out.  There will be a combined Bicycle Pedestrian Task Force meeting for October/November at this meeting.


3.2 Canalway Initiative: The next CTANY meeting will be held on August 14th in Syracuse.  More announcements are expected for trail projects under the 5 year $35 million program.  Albany County is not eligible due to legislation restrictions.  On August 29th the Greenway will be sponsoring a meeting to discuss opportunities for trails and open space in Albany County.  This meeting will be a precursor to the Greenway Grant's Regional Outreach meeting in October.  The meeting is part of the Albany Waterfront Plan. 


3.3 Guilderland Pathways Committee: L. Childs noted that the town has budgeted $25,000 over the last two years for sidewalks proposed to fill gaps along Western Avenue near Old Grand Union and Gipp Road. It was also noted that residents of Lone Pine #7, a 20-house development that borders the Pine Bush, do not want sidewalks.  L. Childs provided members with a cross-section sketch of the Town Highway Department's standards.  No sidewalks or trees are shown.  Concerns about width and speeds were raised. The Pathways Committee is looking for knowledge base for areas with high snow removal. 




4.1 Route 20/155 Signals: J. Purvis provided members with a recent newspaper article describing the new crosswalk button at the intersection of Routes 20 and 155 in Guilderland.  The new button stops traffic in all directions to allow the pedestrian a safer crossing environment.  A sign prohibiting right turns on red is also activated when the ped button is used.  The technique seems to be working well. 


4.2 2000 Census Data: J. Purvis distributed some preliminary data form the 2000 Census regarding Journey to Work data.  Walking, carpooling, and public transit use have all declined, while persons with zero vehicles available and persons working at home have increased since the 1990 Census.  This data represents work trips only.  Members discussed a means to obtain data on non-work trips.  K. McLoughlin inquired about the availability of Federal funds to conduct a survey.  E. Troy noted that the NYSDOH conducts a survey that may be of some use.  T.  La Salle noted that the SUNY survey might have relevant data.  J. Purvis will follow-up on the SUNY survey and report back to members.



4.3 Economic Value of Walkablity: J. Purvis noted and circulated an article by Todd Litman discussing the economic value of walkability.


4.4 Fire at Scrafford Lane: J. Purvis noted the recent fire that claimed the property on Scrafford Lane south of the Railroad Tracks.  Fire Officials were unable to get their vehicles past the tracks, due to the Jersey barriers placed there by the Railroad.


4.5 Other New business: D. Robertson reported that no date has been set for the announcement of Enhancement Projects in the Capital District. 









-         The next CDTC Bicycle and Pedestrian Task Force meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, September 10, 2002 at the CDTC office, 5 Computer Dr. West, at 4:30 p.m.