GTC Planning Committee - Minutes

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Ebenezer Watts Conference Center

Rochester, New York

February 15, 2007




James Brady, Wayne County

James Fletcher, Monroe County At Large

Daniel Hallowell, NYSDOT Region 4

Kristen Mark Hughes, Ontario County

Paul Johnson, Monroe County Planning Board

Scott Leathersich, Monroe County At Large

Terrence J. Rice, Monroe County

William Sullivan, Rochester City Council

Chris Wilson, Yates County

David Woods, Livingston County

David Zorn, Genesee/Finger Lakes Regional Planning Council


Doug Benson, Rochester City Planning Commission, representing Chuck Thomas

David Cook, RGRTA, representing Mark Aesch

Wayne Hale, Jr., Orleans County, representing William Eick

John Thomas, City of Rochester, representing Paul Holahan


Jeffrey Adair, Monroe County

Philip Brito, FAA

Glenn Cooke, Seneca County

Robert Griffith, FHWA

Timothy Hens, Genesee County

Fred Humphrey, Wyoming County

William Leslie, NYSTA

Tracy Logel, Monroe County Supervisors Association

Edward Muszynski, Empire State Development Corporation

(Vacant), City of Rochester At Large

(Vacant), FTA

(Vacant), NYS Department of Environmental Conservation


Deborah Elliott, GTC Staff

Erik Frisch, GTC Staff

Richard Perrin, GTC Staff

Robert Scholl, NYSDOT Region 4

Rob Slaver, NYSDOT Region 4

Petra Staats, GTC Staff

James Stack, GTC Staff


1. Call to Order & Introductions

David Woods, Chairman, called the meeting to order at 10:12 a.m. Members, Alternates, and others present introduced themselves.

2. Public Forum

No one from the public spoke during the Public Forum.

3. Approval of Minutes

Scott Leathersich requested that a correction be made to the minutes on page five; the Monroe County Overhead Traffic Sign Visibility Upgrade study was 16 percent complete, not 60 percent complete.

Terrence Rice moved for approval of the minutes from the January 11, 2007 Planning Committee meeting; Dan Hallowell seconded the motion. The minutes were approved as amended.

4. Reports and Action on Old Business

a. Reports on UPWP Projects and Other Activities


Richard Perrin reported:

         GTC staff are continuing to advance all three major products to meet SAFETEA-LU requirements based on the Gantt Chart that was developed.

         No progress to report on the Rural County Resource Development Initiative.

         GTC staff are developing the 2007-2027 LRTP Update as proposed and discussed at the January 11 Planning Committee meeting. The LRTP Development Committee will meet after this Planning Committee meeting to provide guidance to GTC staff on issues and opportunities to be addressed in the update. Public meetings will be held in conjunction with the TIP in March.

         GTC staff are continuing to work with other MPOs, NYSDOT, NYSDEC, and USEPA on development of the State Implementation Plan for ground-level ozone. GTC staff have reviewed the NYSDEC-developed motor vehicle emission budgets for the Rochester non-attainment area. GTC and other MPOs will meet with NYSDEC and EPA on February 23 in Orange County. Project classifications for projects in the Draft 2007-2012 TIP Update were provided to NYSDOT Environmental Analysis Bureau on February 9 to get a jump start on the required conformity determination. Staff continue to develop emissions analysis for projects proposed to be programmed using Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality funds.

         Meetings with industrial development agencies and economic development departments for the Transportation and Industrial Access project have been held with eight counties and the City of Rochester. Draft reports for each of the sites are being developed.

         Traffic count tabulation for the NYS Thruway and Ontario County roads is complete and the tabulation for Monroe County roads is underway. These tabulations will be used for the GTC Travel Demand Model Enhancement project. The base year transportation analysis zone and associated land use and road network files have been transmitted to the consultant.

         The Bicycle & Pedestrian Supportive Code Language project is a joint project with G/FLRPC. Staff is continuing review of technical memos and development of a presentation template. GTC staff expects to provide a draft for Planning Committee consideration for recommendation to the Board at the April 19 Planning Committee meeting.

         Recommendations of the Greater Rochester Transportation Operations and Management Organization Feasibility Study continue to be implemented. GTC convened the most recent meeting of the Transportation Management Committee on January 16 with a presentation by RGRTA on its Technology Initiatives for Driving Excellence program a comprehensive transit ITS program that is recommended for funding in the 2007-2012 TIP.

         All four Priority Trails Advancement projects are progressing. The City of Rochester Erie-Attica Railroad Bridge and the Irondequoit Creek Stream Corridor projects are beginning. An executed letter of agreement with the City was received in late-January. The New York Central Westshore Rail-to-Trail Steering Committee meeting was held February 8. Fieldwork is nearly complete. The Lehigh Valley Railroad Rail-to-Trail Steering Committee meeting will be held February 15 in Caledonia.

         Staff is continuing review of the technical memo for the On-Street Bicycle Facility Opportunities Review for review by TMA counties and NYSDOT representatives. GTC staff expects to provide a draft for Planning Committee consideration and recommendation to the GTC Board at the April 19 or May 17 Planning Committee meetings.

         The Pedestrian Facilities Inventory project is on hold until an intern can be hired in late-Spring/early-Summer.

         Ten proposals were received by the February 9 deadline for the Village of Perrys Circulation, Accessibility, and Parking Program (CAP) project. Proposals were sent to the consultant selection committee. The RFP for the Village of Hilton CAP project was advertised in the February 5 edition of the NYS Contract Reporter and proposals are due March 16. The RFP for the Village of Macedon CAP project is under review and should be advertised in the March 5 edition of the NYS Contract Reporter. The City of Rochesters Brown Square CAP project is on hold per the Citys request until appropriate staff resources are available.

         The Congestion Management Process (CMP) is being advanced as part of the 2007-2027 LRTP Update. Capacity and incident-related congested links have been identified for consideration by the LRTP Development Committee. GTC staff are fulfilling an FHWA request for information on the status of the GTC CMP.

         The Travel Time Data Collection Assessment project will be presented for closeout later in the meeting.

         The third Steering Committee meeting was held January 12 for the Strategic Plan for Public Transportation in Yates County. The fourth Steering Committee meeting was held February 13 to review the draft report. The second and final public meeting will be scheduled.

         No progress to report for the Transportation Information Resources project.

         The scope of work for the Regional Goods Movement Strategy will be finalized for review once the decision is made on whether and in what amount Statewide Planning and Research (SPR) funds will be allocated to the project.

Dan Hallowell stated that a meeting was held on February 14 to discuss SPR funds and that he expects feedback soon.


David Zorn reported:

        The G/FLRPC Planning Coordination Committee concurred with the Scope of Work for the Local Update of Census Addresses - Phase 1 project on February 2.

         Surveys for the 2005 Regional Land Use Monitoring report were distributed and a few have been returned; tabulation will begin soon.

         The last few tasks for the LRTP Non-Air Environmental Scan project are nearly complete and draft products should be delivered to GTC by February 16.

         Revisions were made to the reports based on feedback from the two municipalities for the Preparing Village Main Streets for Planning project. A technical meeting was held on February 9 and the final public meetings will be scheduled soon.

         Public meetings will be scheduled for the end of February or beginning of March for the Optimizing Transportation Infrastructure through Effective Land Use project.

David Woods noted that David Zorn will give a presentation on the Local Update of Census Addresses project to the Livingston County Board of Supervisors on March 28. David Zorn noted that he has scheduled or already given presentations to other county boards of supervisors and legislatures as well. David Woods asked if other Regional Planning Councils (RPCs) are as involved in their respective Local Update of Census Addresses. David Zorn replied that most RPCs are not involved to this extent; but some are involved in the process.

Monroe County

Paul Johnson reported:

         Surveys for the 2006 Monroe County Land Use Monitoring report were sent out with approximately half returned.

         A contract is expected to be executed next week for the production of the Monroe County Parking Study. Final quality review is being completed.

Terrence Rice reported:

         No progress to report for the Accident Rate Database project.

         The Monroe County Overhead Traffic Sign Visibility Upgrade study is progressing and is approximately 24 percent complete.

         No progress to report on the Traffic Sign Retroreflectivity Study. The project is on hold pending new guidelines from FHWA.

         The work is complete for the Safe Passing Zone Survey. An executive summary is under development.

         Eleven locations are on the active list for evaluation as part of the Monroe County High Accident Location Program project.

         The Pedestrian Activity Safety Study is complete.

John Thomas asked if any of the eleven locations to be evaluated for the High Accident Location Program project are in the City of Rochester. Terry responded that probably more than half of these locations are in the city.

Ontario County

Richard Perrin reported:

         Work is continuing on development of the Request for Proposals for the State Route 96 / State Route 318 Rural Corridor Study.

         The final public meeting for the Canandaigua Regional Transportation Study was held January 18 with approximately 50 attendees. This completes the project.

City of Rochester

John Thomas reported:

       The draft final report for the Port of Rochester Transportation Evaluation and Support Study is still being reviewed internally and should be completed by the end of March.

        A meeting was held on February 7 for the City of Rochester Vehicle Fleet Alternative Fuels Systems Study. A representative from Keene, NH visited to discuss biofuels use in a cold weather climate. An outline of the final report has been developed and completion is expected in the next few months.

Doug Benson reported:

        A draft of the manual for the Neighborhood Traffic Calming Concept Design and Implementation project is on hold pending additional staff resources.

       City Council approved the consultant for the Center City Parking Development & Management project and a kick off meeting will be held March 2

Terry Rice asked about the status of the Neighborhood Traffic Calming Concept Design and Implementation Study draft manual. Doug Benson responded that the manual is 90-95 percent complete. After an internal review, the City will share it with MCDOT prior to broader distribution.


David Cook reported:

         The contractor is processing data collected from 400 telephone interviews with non-customers for the Market Research for Regional Transit Service project.

        A consultant was selected for the Coordinated Public Transit-Human Services Transportation Plan and the project is expected to get underway soon.

        The Security and Safety Plan for Public Transportation project is complete.

        Internal review continues on the draft final report for the RTS/Lift Line Operational Analysis & Facility Utilization Study.

        The RTS Fare Modification Study is complete.

        RGRTA Route Analysis is an on-going project for the Scheduling Department.

        A request to reallocate funds from the Alternative Fuels Technology/RTS Hybrid Bus Study to new tasks has been made as part of the FY 2007-2008 UPWP.

Dan Hallowell asked that the MPO lead the project solicitation process for the Coordinated Public Transit-Human Services Transportation Plan to ensure that there is no conflict of interest. David Cook noted that there are two processes involved in this project; the first is the development of the plan, which needs multi-agency involvement. That plan guides implementation. The second phase is to solicit projects to fulfill the plan. He added that there is a competitive solicitation process for the affected fund sources but that, as written, the regulations state that the FTA Section 5307 designated recipient is responsible for leading the project solicitation process.

Richard Perrin stated that he saw no issue with the MPO leading the project solicitation process if requested by RGRTA and noted that the regulations are still being finalized.

James Fletcher asked if RGRTA or any other agencies experienced problems with low-sulfur diesel fuel during the recent cold spell. David Cook responded that RGRTA did not experience any problems. James Brady replied that Wayne County did. David Cook noted that RGRTA blends the low-sulfur diesel fuel with kerosene, while others rely on additives. He noted that the New York State Office of General Services (OGS) contracts with Griffith Energy, which assumed that the additives would work in the cold and they did not. James Fletcher stated that Penfield also uses Griffith Energy and that their suppliers could not provide enough kerosene and were trying to get additional supplies from Canada. David Cook stated that RGRTA had to have the kerosene trucked in from Buffalo and predicted that the next challenge will come from bio-diesel. John Thomas noted that Keene, NH has been using biodiesel with additives without any problems.

Genesee County

Richard Perrin reported:

         No progress to report on the Genesee County Safe Passing Zone Survey.

Wayne County

James Brady reported:

        The Cluster Development Enhancement Project Feasibility Study is progressing.

         A consultant has been selected for the Palmyra Route 21 Truck Traffic Study; data collection and analysis is underway.

Wyoming County


Richard Perrin reported:

        No progress to report on the Transportation Elements of Scenic/Historic Resources in Wyoming County project.

Other Agencies

Richard Perrin reported:

         Final quality review on the RFQ for the Regional Traffic Count Collection project is underway.

         Data analysis for the New York Route 96 Traffic Signal Coordination Study is continuing.

         The draft final report for the Erie-Attica Railroad Bridge and Trail Feasibility Study is nearly complete.

         The Steering Committee for the Meridian Centre Boulevard Extension Study met and preliminary alternatives have been developed.

         The Steering Committee will meet March 1 to review work done to-date on the Route 250 Corridor Study.

         The preferred consultant has been chosen for the Williamson Route 104 & Route 21 Gateway Concepts project but the committee is reconsidering the selection because the consultants project manager is leaving the firm.

b. Any Other Old Business or Announcements

1. Task 4100 Local Update of Census Addresses Phase 1 Scope of Work

The Scope of Work was conditionally approved at the January 11 Planning Committee meeting contingent on approval by the G/FLRPC Planning Coordination Committee (PCC). The PCC met on February 2 and concurred with the scope.

Livingston County Board of Supervisors Chairman James Merrick redesignated David Woods as the Livingston County Planning Committee member on January 10, 2007. Chairman Merrick also redesignated Don Higgins and Heather Ferrero as Mr. Woods alternates to the Planning Committee.

5. Action Items

a. Recommendation to the GTC Board concerning adopting the FY 2007-2008 Unified Planning Work Program

Richard Perrin discussed the Draft FY 2007-2008 Unified Planning Work Program (UPWP). He noted that the new projects and additional funding for continuing activities represents the same amounts as included in the 30-day Public Review Document. No comments were received on the Public Review Document by the February 12 deadline. As reported in January, GTC staff reviewed UPWPs from other MPOs and added sections on FHWA and FTA planning revenues that fund UPWP tasks, as well as the public participation process for developing the UPWP and advancing individual UPWP tasks. In addition, since the Planning Committee mailing, GTC staff have conducted editorial reviews of the UPWP document and identified minor corrections. Richard Perrin thanked the members of the UPWP Development Committee for their participation and acknowledged Petra Staats for her management of the project.

Dan Hallowell noted changes to the member list on page five, specifically citing the need to update the Commissioner of NYSDOT.

Terrence Rice asked about the East Avenue study in the Village of Spencerport. Richard Perrin noted that GTC provided technical assistance to the Village under Local Study Support and described the nature of the work GTC staff has provided.

Kristen Mark Hughes moved to approve the FY 2007-2008 Unified Planning Work Program; Dan Hallowell seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.

b. Planning Committee Action concerning approving the DRAFT 2007-2012 Transportation Improvement Program Update Project Lists for Public Review

Richard Perrin discussed the Draft 2007-2012 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) update project lists for public review. He noted that the Public Review Document represents the TIP Development Committee recommended program of projects. The projects included in this program can be expected to be programmed in federal fiscal years 2011 and 2012. The exceptions are those projects programmed with Congestion Mitigation Air Quality (CMAQ) funds which can begin in FFY 2008. CMAQ funds are being used to replace other fund sources on existing projects so that additional monies for highway projects are available.

Richard also noted that every bridge project eligible for federal funds has been recommended to receive the full amount requested by the sponsors. In an effort to better and more cost effectively manage our highway and bridge infrastructure, this TIP update is the first that proposes providing federal funds for highway and bridge preventive maintenance. In addition, funding for Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) projects is nearly fifty percent above the amount included in the 2005-2010 TIP. The amount of federal funds proposed for bicycle and pedestrian projects is five times the amount included in the 2005-2010 TIP. Nearly $16 million in federal funds are proposed for projects that will have positive air quality benefits.

These projects as well as the ITS and Bicycle and Pedestrian projects are being recommended to receive CMAQ funds. These CMAQ funds are allowing the region to advance initiatives that have been deemed as priorities ITS, multi-use trails, and improvements to the transportation system that reduce emissions from vehicles. Although CMAQ funds are being programmed, in order for obligation of the funds to the project sponsor to occur, a completeness determination must be provided to and approved by NYSDOT Environmental Analysis Bureau and FHWA. GTC expects that most projects will not have any issues being obligated CMAQ funds.

The next steps are to gather public input. It was originally intended to have a 30-day public involvement period but, upon revisiting the TIP update development schedule, it was decided to hold a 45-day public involvement period from February 21 through April 6. Four public meetings have been scheduled: March 15 at Ogden Town Hall, March 19 at Rochester Public Library, March 21 at Perinton Community Center, and March 22 at Henrietta Town Hall. This schedule still allows us to have a second public review period of ten days in May, if necessary. The TIP Development Committee will consider public comments and make recommendations to the Planning Committee at the April 19 meeting.

Terrence Rice asked for clarification on the public meeting schedule for the LRTP. Richard Perrin responded that public input on the development of the LRTP update would be sought at the TIP public meetings. Richard noted that the legal notice and media releases will mention this opportunity.

Terrence Rice noted that this region is on the cutting edge by using federal funds for preventive maintenance projects. CMAQ allowed this flexibility by maximizing the use of other fund sources. He believes we will be a model for other regions to follow when considering preventive maintenance.

John Thomas concurred with Terrys comments, noting that preventive maintenance is very beneficial to the City of Rochester. James Fletcher also voiced support for preventive maintenance, noting that it will save money in the long run.

Richard Perrin thanked the TDC for their efforts and noted that project sponsors came in with increases on existing projects which helps GTC manage the program. He also noted that county highway superintendents and City of Rochester engineers provided valuable input into the preventive maintenance evaluation process.

Kris Hughes thought preventive maintenance was a good direction to take and that he was happy with the balance of funds received by agencies. Kris asked for an analysis of funding requests versus funding recommendation by jurisdiction. Richard Perrin responded that GTC staff has already put together similar materials and can develop this analysis as well.

Terrence Rice moved to approve the DRAFT 2007-2012 Transportation Improvement Program Update Project Lists for Public Review; James Fletcher seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.

c. Recommendation to the GTC Board concerning accepting the final project report, Travel Time Data Collection Assessment, as evidence of completion of UPWP Task 7120

Erik Frisch gave a presentation on the Travel Time Data Collection Assessment project.

William Sullivan moved to recommend acceptance of the final project report as evidence of completion of UPWP Task 7120; Terrence Rice seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.

d. Recommendations to the GTC Board concerning various amendments to the 2005-2010 TIP

David Woods suggested grouping the following two amendment requests. The Committee concurred.

1. Recommendation to GTC Board concerning amending the 2005-2010 TIP by adding the Multi-Agency Green Fueling Stations project.

Richard Perrin discussed the proposed amendment for the Multi-Agency Green Fueling Stations project. He described the project, noting that it is recommended for funding in the TIP update and included in the public review document. Due to the nature of the project, multi-agency agreements requiring significant lead time are needed. The involved agencies are looking to advance the project as soon as possible. This project is proposed to receive CMAQ funds which are available now. Richard noted that one challenge for this project is to quantify the air quality benefits of this project, a necessary step to securing the CMAQ funds.

John Thomas thanked Richard Perrin for suggesting the concept of regional stations instead of a station for each agency. William Sullivan noted that the level of interagency cooperation on this project is remarkable.

2. Recommendation to GTC Board concerning amending the 2005-2010 TIP by increasing the total cost of the Erie Street Bridge project

James Brady discussed the proposed amendment and noted reasons for the cost increases, namely material prices.

Richard Perrin noted that both amendments were reviewed by the TIP Development Committee at their February 1 meeting.

David Cook moved to recommend approval of Proposed Council Resolutions 07-3 and 07-4; James Fletcher seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.

6. New Business

There was no new business.

7. Public Forum

No one from the public spoke during the Public Forum. Richard Perrin noted that Larry Greiner from the Village of Clyde had planned to attend and speak in favor of Proposal 06-100 on the DRAFT 2007-2012 Transportation Improvement Program Update Project Lists but could not attend due to a weather-related travel ban in Wayne County.

8. Next Meeting: April 19, 2007 Ontario County Municipal Building

9. Adjournment

The meeting adjourned at 11:18 a.m.