PLANNING COMMITTEE MEETING
February 1, 2012
Bradley Birge, City of Saratoga Springs
Frank Bonafide, NYS Department of Transportation Region 1
Robert Cherry, NYS Department of Transportation Region 1
Peter Comenzo, Town of Rotterdam
Frank Commisso, Albany Port Authority
Todd Fabozzi, representing Rocky Ferraro, Capital
Regional Planning Commission
Steve Feeney, Schenectady County
Steve Iachetta, Albany County Airport Authority
Andrew Kreshik, City of Troy
Patrick McCarroll, representing Michael Loftus, NYS
Barbara McHugh, Town of
Mike Morelli, Town of
John Poorman, Capital District Transportation Committee
Dede Rudolph, City of Albany
Stephen Strichman, City of Schenectady
Joseph Teliska, representing Wayne Bonesteel, Rensselaer County
Michael Tengeler, representing
Joseph LaCivita, Town of
Mike Valentine, Saratoga County
Steve Watts, Town of Halfmoon
Kristina younger, Capital District Transportation Authority
STAFF AND OTHERS
Ann Benware, Capital District Transportation Committee
Jennifer Ceponis, Capital District Transportation Committee
Mike Cooper, Bergmann Associates
Peter Faith, Greenman Pederson
Ross Farrell, Capital District Transportation Authority
Bob Hansen, Creighton Manning
Tom Johnson, Barton & Loguidice
David Jukins, Capital District Transportation Committee
Matt Mastin, Town of East Greenbush
Fred Mastroianni, Greenman Pederson
Sandra Misiewicz, Capital District Transportation Committee
Larry Mulvaney, NYS Department of Transportation
Chris O’Neill, Capital District Transportation Committee
Jeff Pangburn, Creighton Manning
Glenn Posca, Capital District Transportation Committee
Heidi Romines, NYS Department of Transportation
Deb Stacey, Capital District Transportation Committee
Tim Wales, City of Saratoga Springs
Carrie Ward, Capital District Transportation Committee
Karen Williams, NYS Department of Transportation
Kristina Younger opened the meeting at approximately 9:34 AM. There were no visitor’s issues.
CDTA PARK & RIDE/EXPRESS BUS STUDY PRESENTATION
Carrie Ward and Ross Farrell presented the results of this study. Carrie Ward presented the results of a survey that found that 95% of Park & Ride lot trips are work related, and 85% are destined for downtown Albany; 65% use the bus, 27% travel by carpool, and 5% travel by vanpool. There are 1,261 daily Park & Ride lot users; there is plenty of space in existing lots; and there is relatively little signage. Recommendations for improvements to Park & Ride facilities were presented.
Ross Farrell presented findings for express bus service. Short-term recommendations include consistent routing, elimination of reverse trips, and minor schedule adjustments. Mid-term improvements include reduced fare zones, introduction of a 40-trip ticket, and extension of service to Glens Falls. Long-term recommendations include additional trips to all park & rides, and a 25% increase in service if funding is available.
Mike Valentine suggested looking at options at Northway exits 15 and 17. Rosemary Nichols stated that municipalities can and should be strong in support of shared use Park & Ride lots. Deb Stacey explained that there is an ongoing struggle with developers resisting shared use Park & Ride lots. Kristina Younger commented that since CDTA is not designated as an involved agency for SEQR reviews, they often do not get to comment on developer proposals. However, if municipalities could remember to send developer proposals for CDTA comment, CDTA could assist in identifying Park & Ride and transit related issues. Dave Jukins commented that CDTC would also like to assist in reviewing developer proposals as needed. John Poorman commented that the Northway Integrated Corridor Management Study can reinforce some of the recommendations from the Park & Ride Express Bus Study.
Approval of the January 4, 2012 Meeting Minutes
Three typographical errors were noted on the last page of the minutes: under “Enforcement Training Reminder”, “raining” should read “training”; under “Map 21”, “like” should read “likely”; and under “USEPA Urban Waters Program”, “waterwas” should read “waterways”. With these corrections, members approved the January 4th minutes.
UNIFIED PLANNING WORK PROGRAM
Amendment to the 2010-2012 UPWP - Washington/Western BRT Alternatives Analysis
Kristina Younger explained that this amendment is being requested because FTA requires that the Alternatives Analysis grant (TIP Project A532) in the amount of $500,000 ($400,000 federal) must be included in the current UPWP. CDTC formally approved the initial package on June 2, through Policy Board resolution. Dave Jukins also explained that there was a mistake in the description of the amendment, referring to the current UPWP as the 2011-12 UPWP; the reference should be corrected to refer to the current UPWP as the 2010-2012 UPWP. With this correction, members approved the amendment.
Approval for Release of the Draft 2012-14 UPWP for Public Review
Dave Jukins reviewed major tasks that are included in the draft UPWP, including a TIP update; significant data collection to support performance based planning; Washington/Western BRT Alternatives Analysis, with a supporting effort by CDTC staff to develop a transit component of the STEP Model; and other major tasks. John Poorman explained that the UPWP assumes that Congress will continue current funding levels. Rob Cherry requested more explanation in the UPWP for new initiatives, and more description of what has been completed. Dave Jukins responded that staff can do that. Kristina Younger explained that after a 30 day public review period, the Policy Board will be asked to approve the UPWP. She explained that CDTA will update the Transit Development Plan and continue travel demand management efforts under the new UPWP.
A motion to release the draft UPWP for public review was approved by members.
2012-2013 Linkage Program
Sandy Misiewicz presented the results of the solicitation for new Linkage Planning Program projects for 2012-13. $150,000 for consultant assistance and $100,000 for staff technical assistance were reserved. Three submissions were received requesting $122,500 in federal planning funds. These three projects were reviewed by an evaluation team consisting of staff from CDTC, CDRPC, CDTA and NYSDOT using evaluation criteria documented in the hand out. The results of the evaluation were that the Clifton Park proposal for $50,000 in federal planning funds for Town Center Strategic Zoning Code revisions, and the Watervliet Bicycle Master Plan proposal for $35,000 were recommended for approval. The Schodack Transportation Capacity, Safety and Sustainability Improvements at I-90 Exit 12 was not recommended for approval because of concerns about consistency with New Visions principles and because another approved Linkage Study in Schodack has not yet started.
A motion was made to approve the evaluation team’s recommendation that the Clifton Park and Watervliet projects would be funded with a total of $85,000 in federal planning funds. The motion was clarified to indicate that the remaining funds would be put into a reserve for next year, and that this action represents an amendment to the draft UPWP approved for public release earlier in the agenda. Members approved the motion.
2010-15 TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM
Status of TIP Amendments
Elm Street Bypass (A345)
Glenn Posca explained that as part of an exercise to balance the four year STIP, Region One requested that CDTC consider removing the Elm Street Bypass (A345) from the TIP because the Town was unable to reach consensus on an alternative other than the null alternative. Glenn Posca explained that the Town of Colonie is willing to remove the Elm Street Bypass from the TIP. Rosemary Nichols requested a sixty day extension on any action to give the Town and the City of Watervliet time to review options. In addition, John Poorman noted that removing the project from the TIP now would trigger an air quality conformity update. It was suggested that by moving the project to the fifth year, the STIP would be balanced without removing the project from the TIP, and giving affected parties more time to review options.
Two Bridge Projects (A489 and A490)
Two proposed TIP amendments submitted by Frank Bonafide were distributed. In order to balance the STIP, the amendments propose to move these two projects from the fourth year of the TIP to the fifth year of the TIP. The two projects were PIN 1807.16, A489, NY 913T Bridge over the D&H Ramp: Bridge replacement; and PIN 1807.17, A490, Loudonville Bridge over the I-09 Ramp: Bridge replacement.
A motion to move the Elm Street Bypass (A345) and the two bridge projects (A489 and A490) from the fourth year of the TIP to the fifth year of the TIP was approved by members.
TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM AMENDMENTS - RECONSIDERATION
OF PREVIOUS AMENDMENT REQUESTS
R279 (1757.99), US 4/Mannix Road Roundabout
Dave Jukins explained that this project and the Ballston Avenue project have documented safety merits. Sandy Misiewicz explained that the Mannix Road project is eligible for $1.6 M in HSIP funds, and an increase of $1.101 M is being requested. NYSDOT Region 1 is not able to use HSIP funds from RG23 (Traffic Signals Set-Aside for State Roads) in 2011-2012, leaving up to $1.6 M available.
After discussion, members approved a motion to reprogram $1.101 M in HSIP funds from project RG23 to project R279; to cap federal funding at the new project total ($2.259 M); and to accelerate the project schedule as requested.
SA201 (1756.60), Ballston Avenue, from Union Street to Hamilton Street: Safety Improvements
Sandy Misiewicz explained that the Ballston Avenue project is eligible for up to $1.2 M in HSIP funding. An option to fund the Ballston Avenue project funding as a draw down from RG105 (Safety Set-Aside for Non-State Roads) was identified by staff. RG105 was originally funded with HSIP, and is currently funded with STP-Flex funds. Members approved a motion to use $0.577 M in STP-Flex from RG105 for the Ballston Avenue project.
S157 (1756.01), Maple Avenue Realignment
Steve Feeney explained that an increase in funding of $0.675 M was needed for this project. After discussion, a motion was made to:
· revise the previous amendment for Ballston Avenue to use HSIP funds reprogrammed from RG23 to increase the Ballston Avenue project funding by $0.577 M, rather than using STP-Flex funding from RG105; and
· use a draw down of STP-Flex funds from RG105 to increase the funding for S157 by $0.675 M.
The motion was approved by members.
TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM
New York Works Infrastructure Program
John Poorman explained that the Governor’s budget proposal includes a proposal to use advanced construction to increase transportation funding in the short term. Advanced construction is an option that allows spending beyond the obligational ceiling, using other funds to pay for the contractor that will later be reimbursed with federal funds. New York State has been one of the most conservative states in using this option. It gets more money into the system by giving a basis for borrowing using future federal funding as collateral. Because projects funded under this initiative will need to be developed rapidly, John Poorman and Kristina Younger expressed concern that these projects should be developed in a context sensitive way as much as possible, respecting Linkage study recommendations as much as possible.
Frank Bonafide said that the intent is to spend $125,000 per lane mile, and therefore project candidates would need to be very streamlined projects.
John Poorman explained that this program is expected to need expedited approvals by CDTC, and a special meeting of the Planning Committee may be needed to present information and ask for approval. CDTC Staff will contact Planning Committee members when further information is available.
STATUS OF PLANNING ACTIVITES
Anne Benware distributed a handout that explained that US DOT will be awarding $500 million in FY 2012 TIGER+ discretionary grants. The current appropriation is similar, but not identical, to the previous appropriations for the “TIGER” program awarded in FY 2009, 2010 and 2011.
Todd Fabozzi explained that CDRPC is working on updated population forecasts based on the results of the 2010 Census. CDRPC staff attended a debriefing on the HUD Sustainability Grant approval process. While the CDRPC application was not approved, it was well received. CDRPC is working on the Climate Smart Program, and will be meeting with utilities to document the process for estimating greenhouse gas emissions by municipality. CDRPC has also begun working on crash data using GIS methodologies in support of CDTC efforts.
Kristina Younger reported that STOA (State Transit Operating Assistance) for CDTA is increased by two million dollars in the Governors proposed budget. This means that the CDTA shortfall will be seven million dollars instead of nine million dollars. Ridership is up significantly, with December 2011 being the second highest ridership month in CDTA history. BusPlus ridership has been strong, and the Albany restructuring plan has led to an increase in ridership of over 15 percent. Phase 2 of the Albany restructuring is entering the public input phase. The Capital Region Bike Rack program is entering its third and final solicitation period. It has been very successful, and so far has provided 2000 spaces for bike parking.
Frank Bonafide reported that Region One will be moving from their offices in Schenectady to 50 Wolf Road. The Fuller Washington project will be let next week. Rob Cherry reported that as a result of the Route 50 Southern Gateway Study by NYSDOT, CDTC, Saratoga Springs, and the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, a new signal will be opened just north of West Avenue. The signal will be pedestrian activated and will connect with the rail trail system. The I-87 Integrated Corridor Management Study will be conducting Steering Committee, stakeholder and public meetings on March 5th and 6th.
Albany County Airport Authority
Steve Iachetta reported that the Airport Authority submitted seven CFAs (Consolidated Funding Applications). The successful $3.9 million State CFA grant awarded on its merits from the 2005 Transportation Bond Act was for renovation and expansion of the airports only Aircraft Maintenance Repair and Overhaul facility at 85 Sicker Road in the Northwest Airfield Quadrant. Enplanements have been flat, but growth is expected in 2012.
John Poorman reported that the national AMPO conference will be held in Saratoga Springs in September and CDTC staff is participating in the planning for the conference. On March 16th there will be a Clean Communities meeting.
The meeting was adjourned at approximately 11:50 PM. The next Planning Committee meeting is scheduled for April 4, 2012. The next Policy Board Meeting is scheduled for March 1, 2012.
John P. Poorman