PLANNING COMMITTEE MEETING
December 12, 2012
Bradley Birge, City of Saratoga Springs
Frank Bonafide, NYS Department of Transportation R1
Peter Comenzo, Town of Rotterdam
Darrell Duncan, Albany County
Todd Fabozzi, representing Rocky Ferraro, Capital
Regional Planning Commission
Ross Farrell, Capital District Transportation Authority
Stephen Feeney, Schenectady County
Michael Franchini, Capital District Transportation Committee
Steve Iachetta, Albany County Airport Authority
Patrick McCarroll, representing Michael Loftus, NYS Thruway
Barb McHugh, Town of Clifton Park
Randy Milano, City of Albany
Mike Morelli, Town of Bethlehem
Russ Reeves, City of Troy
Paul Reuss, Village of Menands
Joe Teliska, representing Wayne Bonesteel, Rensselaer County
Tony Tozzi, Town of Malta
Michael Valentine, Saratoga County
Steve Watts, Town of Halfmoon
STAFF AND OTHERS
Bill Anslow, Albany County
Anne Benware, Capital District Transportation Committee
Jennifer Ceponis, Capital District Transportation Committee
Christopher Desany, Capital District Transportation Authority
Lee Ecker, CHA
Peter Faith, Greenman-Pedersen, Inc.
Karen Hulihan, NYS Department of Transportation R-1
Dave Jukins, Capital District Transportation Committee
Mary Anne Mariotti, NYS Department of Transportation R-1
Leah Mosall, Capital District Transportation Committee
Larry Mulvaney, NYS Department of Transportation R1
Sree Nampoothiri, Capital District Transportation Committee
Chris O’Neill, Capital District Transportation Committee
Jason Purvis, Capital District Transportation Committee
Jim Rivers, Greenman-Pedersen, Inc.
Ron Shaffer, NYS Department of Transportation R-1
Barb Tozzi, City of Troy
Carrie Ward, Capital District Transportation Authority
Edward Wolk, Capital District Transportation Authority
Steve Iachetta opened the meeting at approximately 9:35 AM. There were no visitors’ issues.
Previous Meeting Minutes – November 28, 2012
The minutes incorrectly listed Randy Milano as representing Albany County instead of the City of Albany; and incorrectly listed Christopher Desany with the NYS Department of Transportation instead of CDTA. With these changes noted, members approved the November 28th minutes.
2010-15 TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM AMENDMENTS
A500 (1757.95), Sheridan Hollow Sidewalks, City of Albany
Randy Milano explained that this amendment involved a schedule change to advance design funds into the 2012-13 federal fiscal year and to advance construction funds into the 2013-14 federal fiscal year. Design will be done in house. Members approved the amendment.
PARK AND RIDE LOTS ON US 20, CITY OF RENSSELAER
Mike Franchini said that this agenda item is in response to a question from the last meeting about how the Park and Ride Lots project in the City of Rensselaer was programmed on the TIP originally. Dave Jukins distributed a handout (attached) and explained that that City of Rensselaer submitted an application for a Park and Ride lot in the US 20 corridor in response to a solicitation for projects for the 2005-10 Transportation Improvement Program. The request was authorized by a resolution unanimously approved by the City Council and signed by the Mayor.
2013-18 TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM UPDATE
A. CDTC Sub-Allocations
Frank Bonafide distributed a handout (attached) and presented an overview of TIP funding targets and sub allocations. He emphasized that preservation targets are a strong priority for the Department of Transportation. He explained that flat funding after MAP-21 is assumed. Region 1 is expected to spend 83.1% of funding on preservation. That goal is based on preservation modeling and condition goals.
Mike Franchini said that the MPO directors have been asking for more information on the State’s models; a meeting is planned, but not yet scheduled.
Frank Bonafide explained that in the past, sub allocations to CDTC have been based on applying the State formula at the regional level. This time, it was not possible to replicate the State formula, so historical percentages were used, in consultation with CDTC and A/GFTC.
Mike Franchini commented that underfunding for transportation is a problem throughout the nation. He explained that there will also be Transportation Enhancement Program (TEP) funds and Transportation Alternative (TA) funds. TA funds will continue the TEP program through MAP-21.
Frank Bonafide explained that HSIP funds are included in the calculation of preservation funding targets, while TA funds are kept separate. HSIP either has to be spent on preservation, or count as part of the core spending. Federal fiscal years 2013 and 2014 will be held harmless, except that Marchiselli funding may not be available.
Dave Jukins asked how the Department will deal with other policies beside preservation, such as ADA compliance, complete streets, and MPO Long Range Plans. Frank Bonafide responded that preservation projects are considered consistent with complete streets legislation and smart growth legislation. He also said that ADA projects are considered to be preservation projects.
Joe Teliska asked if there will be any changes to project process and design report requirements. Frank Bonafide said they are trying to streamline the process, but they must meet the federal requirements. He noted that under MAP-21, principle arterials are now part of the NHS system and must meet a higher standard. Karen Hulihan commented that mill and fill jobs may be more streamlined.
Randy Milano asked about the Albany Shaker Road project in Albany. He said that if federal funding is not available, the $11 M cost of the project is not affordable for the City. He said that spending hundreds of thousands to mill and fill does not make common sense if the best solution, reconstruction, is still needed. Frank Bonafide said that we may need to patch things together to keep the system safe and passable. Mike Valentine asked if in five years under this approach, will we be in a situation where everything needs “Beyond Preservation”. Steve Watts commented that governments have kicked the can down the road, and we are now burdened with debt. Frank Bonafide commented that the situation is difficult and frustrating, but we at this table cannot change the revenue stream. Mike Franchini commented that MPOs around the State are in the same situation, although others have not had as many locally sponsored projects. We have to hold on tight and hope for improvements in the next MAP-21.
B. Preservation Project List
Frank Bonafide reported that all Beyond Preservation forms were reviewed by Region 1. As discussed at the last meeting, Region 1 submitted a list of projects to the Main Office.
C. Set-Aside Programming Options
Mike Franchini distributed a handout (see attached) that represents a staff attempt to look at how set-asides could be programmed in the new TIP. This is for discussion today and action at the January 9th meeting. The first group of set-asides represent projects with special funding or that were special onetime projects; it is recommended that this group of set-asides won’t be continued or don’t have to be funded with TIP funds. The second group of set-aside projects can be considered preservation projects. The third group of set-aside on the handout can be considered for “capital funding” over four years. We can solicit every year for set-asides candidates, which will give sponsors more lead time to determine the best projects that are financially feasible. Frank Bonafide noted that solicitation for bridge projects should occur 18 months in advance. Mike Franchini explained that federal fiscal year 2015 would be the first year.
Brad Birge asked about showing CMAQ set-asides in future years. Mike Franchini explained that the table assumes that other funding sources will be found for these important set-asides in future years. In particular, CDTA programs are important.
Jason Purvis asked about TA funding. Frank Bonafide explained that the TA program should be independent from preservation targets. The next TEP round should be in the spring or the summer.
Mike Franchini said that the criteria for project selection will need to be determined, and he suggested that ability of the sponsor to deliver in a timely way should be considered in the criteria. Frank Bonafide commented that timeliness is a very big concern, and it is important that he knows current status for projects.
Brad Birge asked about the increase in funding for goods movement. Mike Franchini explained that MAP-21 places emphasis on goods movement needs, and staff is hoping to revitalize the Freight Task Force. Steve Iachetta commented that intermodal facilities will be important, especially with the growth in internet shopping.
Steve Iachetta asked about the large expenditure for the TMC (Transportation Management Center). Frank Bonafide commented that the need should be somewhat less than shown. Mike Franchini explained that the TMC represents a recognized strategy for congestion management in the Capital District. It may be a good idea to invite the TMC to make a presentation to the Planning Committee.
D. FFY 2015 and Post-TIP Projects on the existing TIP
Mike Franchini explained the list of projects included in the mail out. He said that three options have been suggested for dealing with projects that cannot be funded:
1. Move the projects to the new fifth year of the TIP
2. Move the projects to the new post-five year section of the TIP
3. Add projects to a contingency list to be used in the event of increased funding.
Mike Franchini mentioned the Exit 3/4 project as an example. Phase 1 of the project, replacing the Northway bridges, may have funding under preservation guidelines. Frank Bonafide said that these bridges meet criteria for replacement, but then they would not be categorized as “preservation”. Steve Iachetta said that the possibility of programming FAA money for phase 2 of the project is being explored.
Frank Bonafide said that the Region will review the list with respect to their projects; some projects have been downscaled. Dave Jukins commented that the Selkirk Bypass is an example of a project for which there is interest in keeping some status on the program, even though it is recognized it cannot compete against preservation projects. Mike Franchini said that some projects can be withdrawn, such as the Elm Street Bypass project.
E. Next Steps
Mike Franchini said that lists will be refined and action will be required at the January 9th meeting.
CDTC SCREENING OF BEYOND PRESERVATION PROJECTS
Mike Franchini distributed a handout (see attached) presenting CDTC evaluations for Beyond Preservation (BP) Pavement Project Candidates. Sandy Misiewicz explained that the evaluation was completed using data available from the BP forms, which provides less information than CDTC would normally collect. Many projects are already on the TIP, had status, and are good projects. All of the projects would have passed screen in the CDTC process. The quantitative analysis updated project costs based on the BP forms. Projects with white shading were evaluated. For example, the Route 9 & 20 project limits have been reduced, and therefore the benefits are lower. The conclusion was that all of the projects have benefit-cost ratios that are consistent and fairly high, and are competitive projects.
CMAQ SOLICITATION RESULTS
Mike Franchini distributed a handout (see attached) that listed the project applications received for the CMAQ solicitation. Dave Jukins said that there were eight projects received totaling $1.3 M and reviewed the projects. Steve Feeney stated that the Rosendale Road project does not provide sidewalks on Rosendale Road. Frank Bonafide asked if the Malta project on the list was funded with Demo funding. Further work was needed to clarify the answer to this question. Mike Franchini said that staff will update the project status sheet to determine how much CMAQ funding will be available, and a goal would be to make a decision on selecting additional CMAQ projects by February or March, since time is of the essence to obligate construction for CMAQ projects by September 30, 2014.
HSIP SOLICITATION RESULTS
Frank Bonafide reported that Region 1 had received an application for HSIP funding from Saratoga Springs for the Ballston Avenue project. There will be a second submittal deadline for FFY 2014 in March with roughly $43 M available. For 2013, the State is emphasizing pedestrian countdown timers and centerline rumble strips as systemic improvements.
PLANNING COMMITTEE OFFICERS NOMINATION AND ELECTION
Mike Franchini explained that at the January 9th meeting there will be election for Planning Committee officers. We will need to nominate and elect a Chair and Vice Chair, since Steve Iachetta was elected to Vice Chair and then moved to Chair. Mike asked members to think about who they might want to nominate and who would be willing to serve. Steve Iachetta said that he is willing to serve as Chair in the coming year.
Status of Planning Activities
Todd Fabozzi reported that CDRPC is working on population forecasts at the traffic analysis zone (TAZ) level. A preliminary set of forecasts for Albany County is completed.
Ross Farrell reported that route restructuring has been completed. BRT planning is under way for the Washington Western corridor and for the river corridor. CDTA will be updating its Transit Development Plan (TDP), a five year plan of services. This week a kickoff presentation will be given to the CDTA Board. The TDP will align with the CDTC New Visions Plan.
Patrick McCarroll reported that that the southbound lanes between Exits 23 and 24 on the Thruway are now on concrete. Two lanes will be open for the winter.
Albany County Airport Authority
Steve Iachetta reported that the Albany International Airport was the only upstate airport to experience positive growth.
Linkage/Local Planning Activities
Sandy Misiewicz reminded everyone that the latest solicitation for Linkage projects is out, and applications are due January 4th.
The meeting was adjourned at approximately 11:35 PM. The next Planning Committee meeting is scheduled for January 9, 2013.