PLANNING COMMITTEE MEETING
January 6, 2010
Melissa Ashline-Heil, City of Cohoes
Bradley Birge, City of Saratoga Springs
Wayne Bonesteel, representing Fred Howard, Rensselaer County
Paul Casillo, City of Schenectady
Peter Comenzo, Town of Rotterdam
Frank Commisso, Albany Port District Commission
Michael Franchini, Albany County (Chairman)
Steve Iachetta, Albany County Airport Authority
Kate Maynard, Town of Wilton
Barb McHugh, Town of Clifton Park
Jim Moore, Town of East Greenbush
Mike Morelli, Town of Bethlehem
Marybeth Pettit, City of Rensselaer
Paul Reuss, Village of Menands
Tom Richardson, City of Mechanicville
Jim Rivers, representing Bill Roehr, City of Troy
Deidre Rudolph, City of Albany
Michael Valentine, Saratoga County
Steve Watts, Town of Halfmoon
Jen Ceponis, Capital District Transportation Committee
Rory Fluman, NYSOFA
Virginia Hammer, Pine Hills Neighborhood Association
Phil Hansen, Interested Citizen
Shelly Johnston, Creighton Manning Association
David P. Jukins, Capital District Transportation Committee
Andrew Kreshik, City of Troy
Sandra Misiewicz, Capital District Transportation Committee
Sree Nampoothiri, Capital District Transportation Committee
Christopher O’Neill, Capital District Transportation Committee
Phil Pearson, Interested Citizen
Manny Salorio, Clough Harbour Associates
Lorenz Worden, Albany Bicycle Coalition
Michael Wieszchowski, Laberge Group
Phil Hansen also addressed the group. Mr. Hansen lives in the city of Albany and has been a bicycle commuter for 30+ years. Mr. Hansen noted that the road diet concept on Madison Avenue would do much for the bicycle friendliness of that road, and he urged the City to integrate this treatment into the design for the project.
Capital District Older Driver Network Assistance
Rory Fluman from NYS Office for the Aging (OFA) provided information about the Older Driver Network Assistance program that is offered by NYSOFA. This program is funded through the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee which meets monthly. The program provides assistance to law enforcement officers on how to deal with the elderly driver and also provides one-on-one assistance to seniors to aid them in assessing their driving skills and needs. Driver rehabilitation assistance is also offered.
CDTC Bicycle Education Campaign
Approval of the November 4, 2009 Meeting Minutes
Members approved the November 4th meeting minutes with two corrections. A correction on the bottom of page 2 was noted — the last line should read “…as per FTA/FHWA” and not “as per a FTA/FHWA”. An additional correction on page 3, under Prospectus Update was also noted — “Part 3 will be brief…” should read —“Part 3 will be a brief…”
Election of Officers
Air Quality Conformity
Chris O’Neill described the agreement between CDTC and A/GFTC regarding conformity activities. The conformity analysis was updated to address A/GFTC’s new long range plan for 2030. The conformity analysis was released for public review in November, 2009; no comments were received. Members approved the Conformity document.
2009-14 TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM AMENDMENTS
SA218—Saratoga County Vanpool
A433—Jericho Road Bridge
2010-15 TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM UPDATE
Funding Allocation Report
CDTC staff attended a meeting with NYSDOT Main Office
staff to discuss the funding allocation process. Staff also met with NYSDOT Region 1 to
discuss the proposed sub-allocation process. (Funds allocated to Region 1 are
to be distributed to CDTC, AGFTC, and the region’s rural counties according to
a mutually agreed-upon approach). Staff
will continue to work with Region 1 staff to determine CDTC’s programming
capacity (identifying funds available for programming new projects). Early indications are that CDTC will see less
than the $100 million in “anticipatory” funding that the Planning Committee
agreed to use as a starting point back in October.
CDTC staff and NYSDOT will work together to prepare an “official” allocation estimate to discuss with the Planning Committee at its February meeting.
Candidate Project Walk Through
Staff reviewed the four tables that were e-mailed to members prior to the meeting (copies were also made available at the meeting). Table 1 presents the results of the screening exercise. Screening determined the funding eligibility and consistency with the regional plan. Bob Hansen addressed the question regarding the eligibility of using federal funds to construct bluestone sidewalks along Route 85 in the town of Rensselaerville (project #24); he indicated that bluestone is an eligible material for sidewalks.
Table 2 summarizes the project cost data. CDTC staff completed a detailed review to determine if the sponsor costs were in-line with “known” costs for similar type projects constructed with federal funds in recent years. Staff further adjusted costs by 10% to account for inflation. Table 2 shows the results of this exercise and shows the cost that was used to calculate the benefit-cost ratio for each project. For some projects, the difference between the sponsor cost and CDTC calculated cost is significant. CDTC staff has started a discussion with individual sponsors to reconcile the cost differences.
Table 3 shows the preliminary results of calculated
benefit-cost ratios for each project, using the costs identified in Table 2. Consistent
with CDTC’s project evaluation procedure, bike/ped and transit projects were each
evaluated separately using an evaluation process that was different from what
was used to evaluate the road and bridge projects (the Bicycle/Pedestrian
Projects to not show a B/C ratio). Table
3 also illustrates the influence of the priority network and NHS/Principle
Table 4 shows the results of the evaluation of the candidate Bike/Ped projects. A letter “grade” was assigned to the candidate projects, as well as a weighted score.
Members were asked to review Tables 1 through 4 and to contact staff to discuss any inaccuracies, discrepancies, or questions. These tables will be finalized before the January 20th meeting. Project fact sheets will also be distributed which provide qualitative information for each project. At the January 20th meeting, it is anticipated that Round 1 programming decisions will be made.
Frank Commisso asked why Phase 3 of the Albany Port’s rehabilitation project does not appear on these tables. Bob Hansen reminded members that port projects are generally not eligible for traditional roadway TIP funding, but could be considered for funding if Round 2 of ARRA funding becomes available.
PROSPECTUS UPDATE: Chapter 2
2010-12 UPWP Outline
Dave Jukins briefly reviewed the proposed UPWP. Dave noted that the UPWP not only identifies
the planning work that the staff will pursue in the upcoming two years, but
also summarizes the accomplishments of the last two years due to the efforts of
the staff, Planning Committee and Policy Board. Dave noted that the program proposes several
new initiatives in anticipation of the new transportation bill. The new tasks would address climate change,
freight planning, ADA compliance, and an increased data collection effort, among
others. This UPWP is a draft document
and will be further developed to incorporate budget information.
2010-11 Linkage Program
Bob Hansen reported that there is a good chance that the Capital Region will receive more money for transportation projects under this federal initiative, if it is passed by the Senate. Timing is not known at this time.
NYSDOT Region 1’s Preliminary Candidate Project List
Bob Hansen reviewed the list of Region 1’s preliminary candidate projects that was included in the mailing. He noted that most of the projects on the list are drawn from the current STIP and are considered the “most” read-to-go. He noted that the list is very preliminary and is subject to change. He noted that the rules may be more stringent than under ARRA – the current House version of the bill calls for 50 percent of the funds to be under contract within 90 days of the Bill’s passage. In response to a question from Dede Rudolph, Bob Hansen indicated that local 1R pavement projects will likely be eligible for funding, but further stated that NYSDOT simply does not have enough staff to move local 1R’s forward as it did under ARRA. CDTC staff will work with Region 1 staff and other Planning Committee members to refine the list as more information about the Jobs for Main Street Program becomes available. Candidate transit projects were not yet identified. Dave Jukins reminded members that CDTC will need to keep all of the region’s communities informed through formal outreach.
NYSERDA Funding Opportunity for Small Municipalities
¨ Projects to inventory local greenhouse gas emissions and developing reduction plans
¨ Projects to conduct building code and inspection services
¨ Projects to develop zoning guidelines for sustainable development
¨ Projects to implement regional plans that reduce energy use in various sectors
A link to the full application is provided in the distributed material. The application process can be quite cumbersome; interested municipalities are encouraged to look at the application ASAP, as the submittal deadline is February 17th.
STATUS OF PLANNING
Saratoga County—Mike Valentine announced that the Saratoga County Planning and Zoning Conference is scheduled for January 25th and will be held at the City Center in Saratoga Springs.
NYSDOT—NYSDOT distributed a list of lettings. 9P will be let on January 7th. The Batchellerville Bridge design is being reworked to find some savings in cost. 1R projects are moving forward; savings from initial cost estimates are being used for construction inspections.
There being no other business, the meeting was adjourned at 12:15 p.m. The next Planning Committee meeting is scheduled for January 20, 2010.