Capital District Transportation Committee
Bicycle and Pedestrian Task Force
Record of the Meeting on July 12, 2011
Attendance: Angelo Trichilo (NSYDOT), John Masi (NSYDOT), Katie Bronson (C/O Albany Planning), Joe Kelly (C/O Albany Planning), Jennifer Hogan (GTSC), Chris O’Neill (CDTC), Susan Olsen (NSYDOT Region 1), Tom Kigerman (NSYDOT Main Office), Scott Lewendon (CHA), Lisa Westrick (CHA), John Franchini (NYSDOT Region 1), Mike Lyons (T/O Colonie), Don Odell (Albany Bicycling Coalition), Martin Daley (Parks & Trails NY), James Levy (WSA), Brian Kehoe (NYBC), Todd Fabozzi (CDRPC), Emmett McDevitt (FHWA), Jen Ceponis (CDTC), Jason Purvis (CDTC)
1.0 New Business
1.1 Presentation by NYSDOT: Bike/Ped accommodations at the proposed Exit 3/4
This project started decades ago, originally conceived as “Exit 3” but will be “Exit 4.”
Its 1st objective is to improve access from I-87 to airport & reduce congestion & improve operations on and around Wolf Rd. The 2nd objective is to improve bike/ped accommodations in the vicinity of the project area. Both ROW costs and some wetland impacts are anticipated. There are 4 proposed alternatives – a 3-lane roundabout, a Single Point Urban Interchange (SPUI), a “Diamond” configuration, and a flyover. The 4th alternative, the flyover is being progressed by the region because of its safety benefits and cost-effectiveness. A draft EIS is expected in Novemeber/December 2011 for public review.
-J. Purvis asked what kind of pedestrian accommodations will be made on Wolf Rd? NYSDOT response was that they do not know road widths or potential for bike/ped accommodations yet.
-S. Lewendon proposed the idea of a shared use path on the south side of Albany-Shaker – on-road facilities will be only option & will most likely only be good for skilled cyclists and at some point shared use paths will have to meet on-road facilities. A bike/ped connection on the south-side of Albany-Shaker there will provide better access to The Crossings & Colonie neighborhoods but create a challenge for bike/ped north-south travel on Wolf Rd.
-J.Purvis asked if a shared-use path on north-side of Albany-Shaker was feasible but S.Lewendon did not know.
-M.Lyons asked if extending Aviation Dr to Albany-Shaker so bike/ped can avoid the Wolf/Albany-Shaker intersection. This is outside the scope of this project
-NYSDOT/CHA will begin exploring bike/ped accommodations & will have alternatives by the end of August
-See the project website: https://www.nysdot.gov/regional-offices/region1/projects/i87exit3
1.2 Upstate Transportation Forum
Ithaca Car Share is hosting a transportation conference: Transforming Communities through Creative Collaboration September 22-33 in Ithaca, NY. Register online: http://conta.cc/lzrqui
1.3 Complete Streets
NYS passed the Complete Streets Bill in late June. This bill is anticipated to have some impact on NYSDOT’s planning and engineering process. Right now we know that NYSDOT is required to put out a report in 2 years to demonstrate how they are implementing Complete Streets. S. Olsen advised that Region 1 has already developed a Complete Streets checklist that they will use while in the planning and scoping phases of projects. This check list is separate from the Main Office. S. Olsen also reminded the group that NYSDOT’s funding will be cut 17-20%.
-D.Odell announced that he is very pleased with Delaware Ave in Albany & sharrows on Lark St – these are the types of accommodations (complete streets) in urban areas that can easily be done!
-B.Kehoe - NYBC will create some products that illustrate & describe what the Bill actually says & what NYSDOT/ municipalities are required to do because there seems to be a lot of misunderstanding about what is actually in it.
-D.Odell believes the Bill will enable NYSDOT and municipalities to build complete streets, as well as the public to demand them.
-B.Kehoe thinks the requirement to provide an explanation (in writing) of why bike/ped accommodations cannot be made is a good first step and will make NYSDOT and municipalities look into the potential for bike/ped accommodations more thoroughly.
-T.Fabozzi feels that Complete Streets isn't taking a big-picture view, like emphasizing land use and development that directly impact the transportation system.
1.4 PTNY Conference
The Finger Lakes Trails and Greenways Conference will be held after the Upstate Transportation Forum in Ithaca, NY September 23-24. For more information and to register visit the PTNY website: http://ptny.org/greenways/conference/index.shtml
1.5 Capital Coexist
1.5.1 Radio Disney - recently signed a contract w/ radio Disney to promote Capital Coexist messages to kids
1.5.2 Enforcement - still in discussion-phase with Peter Flucke of WE Bike about enforcement training in Jan - May 2012
-J.Hogan requested GTSC be kept in the loop on enforcement training outreach.
1.6 Bike Rack Program
Bike lockers should be installed at both the Saratoga and Rensselaer train stations. The cost to use the lockers will be $1 for 3 days and all enforcement will be done by Carrie from CDTA. The bike rack program has 1 more year of funding ($50,000) programmed.
1.7 NYSDOT/NYSMPO Bike Ped Coordinator's Meeting
A meeting was held in mid-June with the objective to re-engage the Main Office on bike/ped process. Reasonable progress was made with good discussion with supervisor-level personnel. The Coordinator meetings had originally been set up by NSYDOT but the MPOs eventually took over facilitating the meetings and remains committed to engaging NYSDOT.
-B.Kehoe asked if NYBC could be included in meetings & J.Purvis advised that they are open meetings & as the group moves forward there would be more opportunities for NYBC involvement.
-E.McDevitt said new leadership in Bike/Ped seems to be promising & we can expect to see positive things from Main Office
-J.Purvis announced the next coordinator's meeting scheduled for September 15, in Poughkeepsie, NY
1.8 "They just don't get it..."
-T.Fabozzi brought up the “Safety Village” project in Glenville which ignited some discussion around the table about the necessity of walking/biking education in schools.
1.9 Other Business
-K.Bronson announced that sharrows were recently added to Lark St; and that the NYSDOT Livingston Ave Bridge project will be holding a public meeting which she will keep the task force updated on once she’s hears more information.
-J.Purvis announced that CDTA is holding their Albany County route restructuring meetings 7/13 (Albany Library Main Branch) & 7/14 (Albany Pine Hills Library Branch)
1.9.1 NewAgenda Items?
Please contact J. Purvis with any new agenda items or discussion topics.
2.0 Upcoming Events
Meetings open to the public: Next CDTC Bike/Ped Task Force meeting: August 9, 2011 9AM