Capital District Transportation Committee

Bicycle and Pedestrian Task Force

Record of Meeting on January 13, 2000



Attendance: Don Robertson (NYSDOT - Region 1), Bert Schou (CDTA), Ivan Vamos, (New York Bicycling Coalition), Katherine Forster (CDTC), Sandy Misiewicz (CDTC)


Regrets: Henrietta O'Grady, Don Odell




There were no changes to the December Task Force meeting notes.  The Mohawk Hudson Cycling Club was added as an agenda item.




(October 26, 1999) P. Russell will bring a map re: proposed Bike Path from Schuyler Flats to the next meeting.  P. Russell provided an aerial view map of Schuyler Flats.  This item was deferred to February so that there would be sufficient time to discuss the topic.

(November 18, 1999) CDTA will endeavor to bring some information on the Bikes on Buses program to the next meeting.  (See Item 3.3)

(December 17, 1999) Incorporate new suggestions into the draft and discuss with CDTC's staff director what the next step should be. (See Item 4.1)

(December 17, 1999) Livingston Avenue Bridge to be added to the agenda for the next meeting to discuss how to proceed in regards to this issue. (See Item 5.1)

(December 17, 1999) Contact various municipalities and organizations and gather all the trails and routes to be mapped. (See Item 4.3)




3.1 Pedestrian Friendliness Inventory: S. Misiewicz has been working on creating an inventory to rate the friendliness of intersections in the Capital District.  While there is a large number of characteristics that intersections could be evaluate on, only 20 criteria were chosen to make the inventory user-friendly and not too time intensive.  The inventory was tested this past summer with the help of a summer intern.  Further work on the inventory will be done this year.  The Task Force found the inventory to be thorough and thought it would be very useful.  Suggestions for the inventory:


-        Relate the overall numerical scores to a letter grade (A-F)

-        Add a criteria for distance between crosswalks/signal spacing

-        Add a criteria for good pedestrian access to the crosswalk (especially from bus stop)

-        Add a criteria for a bus stop near the intersection/crosswalk

-        Evaluate the crosswalk for drainage and snow clearance (may be hard to evaluate)

-        Include a criteria for Title 6 & Environmental Justice concerns

-        Another criteria could be the operating speed of the roads

-        Street lighting would be another important criteria


The inventory will be used to evaluate certain intersections at first such as those on the state route system, those in priority locations and ones that generate high numbers of pedestrians.  S. Misiewicz thanked the Task Force for their suggestions.


3.2 Schuyler Flats Bike Trail: Deferred until the February meeting.


3.3 Bikes on Buses: B. Schou would like 100% of the buses equipped with racks but this may be impossible at the beginning.  CDTA has 58 bike racks to begin the program and there must be a decision as to which bus routes will be equipped first.  Even though the Central Avenue corridor is an important corridor to service with the bike racks it may be a problem because of the limited number of racks available.  Other high priorities for the bike racks are: the university corridor in Albany, routes that service RPI, Sienna and Union, and a connection to the train station.  There might be a possibility of allowing bikes inside the buses on rural routes.


The operators will have to be trained and the program will need to be promoted.  CDTA can do some of the training and advertising (brochures, videos) with the $75,000 grant.  B. Schou would like to see the bike racks installed before "Bike to Work" week.  A sub-committee meeting was scheduled for January 27 at 3:00 pm at CDTC office to discuss which bus routes should be a top priority for this program.



3.4 Mohawk Hudson Cycling Club: D. Robertson attended the January meeting of the MHCC.  The cycling club has a Safety and Share the Road committee who are jointly working on an education campaign.  D. Robertson will be helping this joint committee on their campaign.  At the April MHCC meeting he will talk about regional programs in the Capital District.  He invited K. Forster to attend and discuss the MPO program.




4.1 Bike Signage Guidelines: The guidelines were discussed with the Staff Director.  CDTC would like to circulate a draft copy to the various municipalities and counties in the Capital District.  K. Forster will add some graphics before it is sent out.  There may also be the possibility of reserving a couple of thousand dollars (in the CDTC UPWP) to do the logo design competition that the Task Force suggested in the fall.



The Federal MUTCD Chapter 9 is being revised.  This chapter discusses bike treatments.  If anyone wants to submit comments regarding the revisions comments are being accepted until March 24, 2000.  Comments can be submitted to FHWA at the following web page:  Enter the docket number 4720.  The Task Force requested that staff provide the current MUTCD Chapter 9.



4.2 Spot Improvement Program and CDTC's Enhancement Program: The call for submissions for this program went out in January.  This announcement was sent to all municipalities and counties in the Capital District.  CDTC has already received 2 inquiries regarding the program.  The deadline is March 3 for submissions.


The CDTC Enhancement Program cannot start before the Federal Enhancement Program recipients have been announced.  The Main Office DOT feels that this will be in late February.


4.3 Regional Bike Map: I. Vamos provided CDTC staff with some sources to look into to get trail map information.  CDTC staff has requested from the GIS list serve in New York any trails or parks that are already mapped.  There is an Environmental Clearinghouse that may have some maps.  There should also be hiking maps for all 4 counties.


4.4 1995 Albany County Bicycle Collision Data: CDTC prepared the statistics for the 1995 bicycle collision data.  A map of the 1997 Albany County Bicycle Collisions was also available.  Some interesting statistics are: Almost half of the collisions happened when the vehicle was making a left or right hand turn, 21% of the collisions happened when the bicyclist was riding against traffic, and 71% of the collisions happened at an intersection.


This information will be provided to NYBC to use in their safety program.  NYBC is meeting with the Town of Bethlehem's Pedestrian Safety group to discuss possible "unsafe" intersections in the Town.  B. Schou informed the Task Force that CDTA collects data on all bus collisions - this data could be used to find bus/bike collisions and pedestrian/bus collisions.





5.1 Livingston Avenue Bridge: I. Vamos requested that CDTC staff provide some background information on the project.  The City of Albany's correspondence describing the project will be included in the next mail-out.  Addresses for the New York State Senators can be provided at the next meeting.





-        The next CDTC Bicycle and Pedestrian Task Force meeting is scheduled for Thursday, February 10, at the CDTC office, 5 Computer Dr. West, at 4:00 p.m.