Meeting Minutes

October 7, 2009




Bradley Birge, City of Saratoga Springs

Wayne Bonesteel, representing Fred Howard, Rensselaer County

Frank Commisso, Albany Port District Commission

Kevin Corcoran, Town of Glenville

Steve Feeney, Schenectady County

Rocky Ferraro. Capital District Regional Planning Commission

Michael Franchini, Albany County (Chairman)

Robert Hansen, NYS Department of Transportation Region 1

Bruce Hidley, representing Rosemary Nichols, City of Watervliet

Steve Iachetta, Albany County Airport Authority

Kate Maynard, Town of Wilton

Mike Morelli, Town of Bethlehem

Marybeth Pettit, City of Rensselaer

John Poorman, Capital District Transportation Committee

Paul Reuss, Village of Menands

Tom Richardson, City of Mechanicville

Bill Roehr, City of Troy

Deidre Rudolph, City of Albany

Tony Tozzi, Town of Malta

Michael Valentine, Saratoga County

Steve Watts, Town of Halfmoon

Kristina Younger, Capital District Transportation Authority (Vice-Chair)




Frank Bonafide, NYS Department of Transportation Region 1

Stephen Caruso, City of Schenectady

Joe Cimino, Clough Harbour Associates

Shelly Johnston, Creighton Manning Engineering

David P. Jukins, Capital District Transportation Committee

Christine Marshall, Village of Altamont

Sandra Misiewicz, Capital District Transportation Committee

Sree Nampoothiri, Capital District Transportation Committee

Glenn Posca, Capital District Transportation Committee

Deb Stacey, Capital District Transportation Committee

Jennifer Viggiani, Town of Clifton Park

Mike Wieszchowski, Laberge Group





Chairman Franchini opened the meeting at approximately 9:35 am.  There were no visitor’s issues.






Action Items




Approval of the August 5, 2009 Meeting Minutes


The meeting notes from the August 5th meeting were approved with two modifications. Bob Hansen noted that the discussion on page two regarding the auditing of ARRA projects should have read, “federal auditing committee”, not “state auditing committee”. The second correction dealt with the discussion on page 5 regarding the Stewart Dam Bridge and Geyser Road Bridge.  The actions described for these two projects should be switched—the Stewart Dam Bridge work is delayed, while work on the Geyser Road Bridge is moving forward.  Members approved the meeting minutes with these two corrections noted.




Amendment to the 2008-10 UPWP


NYSDOT requested a UPWP revision transferring $400,000 in SPR funds to the CDTC staff budget for the I-87/Route 9 Integrated Corridor Study.  This transfer will allow CDTC to administer the study, which has been repeatedly delayed due to state budget issues.  Members approved the amendment.


2010-11 Linkage Solicitation


Sandy Misiewicz reviewed the proposed changes to the Linkage Program for the 2010-11 Solicitation.  Briefly, it is recommended that the program not only continue to fund planning work, but to offer sponsors of completed Linkage Studies and/or similar planning work to the opportunity undertake planning level implementation activities related to the existing plans (like zoning).  Members requested clarification of the “cancel funding” statement on page 4; suggested that the SEQR discussion also include a discussion about NEPA and that the evaluation criteria be re-ordered, moving #4 to #1, since criterion #4 receives the greatest weight in the evaluation process.  Members approved the 2010-11 solicitation material that was distributed; member comments will be incorporated into the final document.


2010-12 UPWP


John Poorman indicated that staff will be working on a new UPWP in the upcoming weeks.  Activities will be dependent on funding levels. CDTC will prepare several documents for Planning Committee review –the revised formal agreement between CDTC, CDTA and NYSDOT; CDTC’s Formal Operating Procedures and CDTC’s Prospectus.  John asked members for ideas on new UPWP tasks.








CDTC/NYSDOT Report on Project Implementation


Bob Hansen reported that all but eight of the ARRA highway projects have been let.  Many of the bids are coming in lower than expected, accounting for almost $5M in savings.  Given this “savings”, the Albany Port project was submitted and is currently being reviewed by Federal Highway. 


TIGER Project Certification


Dave Jukins drafted letters to the USDOT that stated that CDTC would present the Rail Freight Restoration Project and the Selkirk Rail By-Pass project for addition to the TIP if USDOT selects these projects for funding. Members concurred with the letter.




SA220—Stewart Dam Bridge—NYSDOT submitted an amendment to the TIP for SA220, due to a schedule change.  Members approved the Amendment.


T75 Transit Signal Priority—CDTA received a cost estimate for project T75 that is significantly higher than the estimate that appeared on the TIP.  This work needs to proceed because it is an integral step for BRT implementation.  As an offset, CDTA is willing to delay TIP Project T82 to the 2011-12 programming period.  The amendment references ’08-’09 as the TIP year that the project is programmed in; this is in error and should read ’09-’10.  Members approved the amendment with this correction noted.


Troy-Menands Bridge Pedestrian and Bicycle AccessThis project provides an important bike/ped connection over the Hudson and was supported in the findings of the Hudson River Crossing Study. The proposed amendment would add this project to the list of projects that could be funded if additional ARRA funds become available.  Members approved the amendment.


RG1 Drawdown on Park and Ride LotsMany of the agreements for region’s Park and Ride lots are “handshake” deals, which creates uncertainty for future use.  There is no formal agreement for the use of the Exit 15 Park and Ride lot. This Park and Ride lot is heavily used; 8 NX runs serve the lot, as does the Saratoga Springs Fixed Route service.  The current owner of Wilton Mall would like to formalize the lease and enter into a 10 year agreement in exchange for $100,000.  The lease includes an option to renew. Currently the lease specifies 100 parking spaces.  The terms of this lease agreement are economical—the cost is about 5% of what it would cost to own and operate a private lot.  The proposed amendment would program $110,000 ($100,000 for the lease agreement, $10,000 for incidentals) from the Regional Park and Ride Lot set-aside. Members approved the amendment.



Discussion Items




Project Justification Package Report


CDTC staff held PJP workshops in all four counties over the last two weeks.  Attendance was modest but the workshops were considered to be a success.  Those who attended expressed appreciation for the opportunity to take part in the workshops.



Screening and Merit Evaluation


John Poorman distributed a two page document entitled, “2010-15 TIP: Discussion items for Possible Action”.  John reviewed each of the fourteen items on the handout.  These issues will have to be fleshed out at upcoming meetings.  John advised members to review the list in preparation for deciding how to proceed with screening and merit evaluation for upcoming TIP solicitations.


Reauthorization Update


There has been no definitive information about reauthorization.  One proposal would extend the current bill for three months, another for 18 months.  In the meantime, rescission targets have been announced, and the rescissions will create a huge financial burden and impact many transportation projects.



Bids and Lettings


NYSDOT distributed a list of Bids and Lettings. Two projects were let—one in August and one in September.  The Patroon Island Bridge repair project came in below the engineer’s estimate.







Deb Stacey informed members that the date of the Linkage Forum meeting has been changed to December 1, 2009 at 9:30 am.




Carm Basile has been named as the new Executive Director of CDTA, replacing Ray Melleady. CDTA has been evaluating ridership trends, since the fare was increased in April.  Ridership has declined, but it is difficult to pin the decline solely to the fare increase. The prevalence of bikes on buses has increased 5 fold, indicating that people are avoiding the transfer fee and getting to the mainline by bike.  Fuel prices, weather, the job market and the economy all play a part in the ridership decline.


Albany International Airport


The red checkered water tank at exit 6 is being replaced.  The airport received stimulus funds for this project; only two airports in NYS received stimulus funding, the other being JFK.  The airport “hosted” the president when he came to town on Air Force One in September.  Steve circulated photos.




CDRPC is working on identifying analysis geographies for Census data summaries using the American Community Survey (ACS) data.




There being no other business, the meeting was adjourned at 12:20 p.m.  The next Planning Committee meeting is scheduled for November 4th.



Respectfully submitted,




John P. Poorman