GTC Planning Committee - Minutes

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Genesee Transportation Council Office

March 21, 2002


James Brady, Wayne County Highway Department

Joan Dupont, NYS Department of Transportation Region 4

Richard Garrabrant, NYS Thruway Authority

Steve Hendershott, Monroe County Supervisors Association

Kristen Mark Hughes, Ontario County Department of Planning & Research

Charles Nesbitt, Jr., Empire State Development

Terrence J. Rice, Monroe County DOT

George Stam, City of Rochester

Larry Stid, City of Rochester

William Sullivan, City of Rochester


David Cook, representing Don Riley, RGRTA

Angela Ellis, Ontario County Department of Planning & Research

Don Higgins, Livingston County, representing David Woods

Paul Johnson, representing Rocco DiGiovanni, Monroe County Planning

Sharon Lilla, Wayne County Planning Department

Rob Slaver, Jr., NYSDOT Region 4

John Thomas, City of Rochester

David Zorn, Genesee Finger Lakes Regional Planning Council, representing Paul Howard


Kristin Bennett, GTC Staff

Deborah Elliott, GTC Staff

Erik Frisch, GTC Staff

Steve Gleason, GTC Staff

Brian Lakeman, GTC Staff

Richard Perrin, GTC Staff

James Stack, GTC Staff


John Accorso, City of Rochester

S. William Baker, US EPA

Philip Brito, FAA

Glenn Cooke, Seneca County

Donald Cooley, Orleans County

John Czamanske , Yates County

Stephen Ferranti, Member-At-Large, Monroe County

Glenn Guarino, Member-At-Large, Monroe County

Timothy Hens, Genesee County

John T. Hicks, NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation

Jonathan McDade, FHWA

Thomas Skoglund, Wyoming County Planning Department

William Smith, Monroe County Legislator

Clara Wallace-Douglas, FTA

(Vacant), Member-At-Large, City of Rochester

1. Call to Order

In Paul Howards absence, Paul Johnson called the meeting to order at 10:05 a.m.

2.                 Public Forum

No public comment was offered.

3.                 Approval of Minutes

David Cook made a motion for approval of the minutes from the February 21, 2002 Planning Committee meeting as submitted. Richard Garrabrant seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.

4.                 Reports and Action on Old Business

a.       GTC Staff and Committee Reports

Steve Gleason reported on GTC Staff and Committee activities:

        Three public meetings were held this week for the Regional Trails Initiative project (Downtown Rochester, Greece, and Perinton). Three more public meetings are scheduled for the following week in Canandaigua, Avon, and Walworth. A more detailed report will be provided later in the meeting;

        The GTC Board adopted of the FY 2002-2003 Unified Planning Work Program (UPWP) and the Rochester Amtrak Station Revitalization Study at its meeting on March 7, 2002

        The NYSMPO Statewide Long Term Funding Needs study should be completed in approximately one month (GTC is the lead agency for this study);

        The Congestion Management System (CMS) Working Group last met in late November. GTC staff has been advancing this project since then by selecting, refining, and ranking performance measures. The CMS Working Group will meet again on April 18 (tentative);

        The ITS Planning project has been started. GTC staff is working with the City of Rochester on a Port of Rochester case study;

        A meeting of the GTC Executive Committee will be scheduled for later in April. One item on the agenda will be a discussion of the results of the recently completed assessment of the air quality monitor in Williamson, Wayne County. It was noted that the study found material calibration and siting issues with the two air quality monitoring stations in this region, and;

        GTC has received the results of the USDOT triennial Federal Certification Review that took place in October. GTC has been recertified.

b. Participating Agency Reports



Joan Dupont reported that NYSDOT staff is continuing its usual support activities.


David Cook reported:

        RGRTA is working with Wayne and Wyoming Counties on their Strategic Plans for Public Transportation. Kickoff meetings are being scheduled in each county, and Wayne County has established a study advisory committee, and;

        The Fare Structure Study that was reported on at the February Planning Committee meeting and accepted at the March Board meeting has been useful in the recent fare reduction discussions.

Monroe County Association of Town Supervisors

Steve Hendershott had nothing to report.

City of Rochester

John Thomas reported:

        The Center City Way-Finding Signage Study had been completed. The City will report on the study at the April Planning Committee meeting.


David Zorn distributed summaries of the results of the Regional Satellite Imagery Land Cover Classification project, the Regional Development Analysis project (draft), and the Regional Tourism Signage Study:

        The comment period for the draft Regional Development Analysis report closes March 22;

        Products from the Regional Satellite Imagery and Development Analysis projects include land use classification coverages and zoning maps in GIS. The land use classification coverages have been distributed to all of the counties in the region, and;

        The final report of the Regional Tourism Signage Study is now complete and is available on GFLRPCs web site. The report includes information on existing conditions, the needs and interests of transportation and tourism promotion agencies, signage recommendations and principles, and opportunities for implementation and application.

NYS Thruway Authority


Richard Garrabrant had nothing to report.

Monroe County

Terry Rice reported that the Countys TIP projects are moving forward and that the County is receiving expressions of interest for its new UPWP projects

Livingston County

Don Higgins reported:

        The County is looking to advance the Covington Road bridge project in the Town of Leicester. He noted that the County used the Local Design Services Agreement when it selected a consultant for this project, and;

        The County has received and opened bids for the Poags Hole Road bridge project. Construction will begin this spring.

Wayne County

Jim Brady reported:

        The Lake Road bridge project will go out to bid in April;

        The new Maple Avenue bridge in Palmyra reopened to traffic in December 2001, and;

        The County will begin consultant selection for the Sodus Bay bridge project.

Ontario County

Kristen Mark Hughes reported:

        The Routes 5&20 Access Management study is being finalized at this time, and;

        The CATS bus study is nearing completion.

Empire State Development

Charles Nesbitt, Jr. had nothing to report

b.      Any Other Old Business or Announcements

Steve Gleason explained that there was an error on the regions Transportation Enhancements Program (TEP) Project Priority List that was approved by the GTC Board at its March 7 meeting. As approved, projects 13 and 14 were transposed. A revised list reversing this transposition was distributed. The Planning Committee needs to take action to approve the revised list and recommend its approval by the Board. Board members will be asked to vote on the new list, via mail ballot, before the April 1 deadline for submission of the regions TEP Project Priority List. These two projects fall well below the expected funding reach.

Kristen Mark Hughes motioned to accept the revised 2001-2002 Transportation Enhancements Program (TEP) Project Priority List. James Brady seconded. The motion passed unopposed.

James Stack announced that Don Ninestine, Chairman of the Ontario County Board of Supervisors, has appointed Kristen Mark Hughes as Ontario Countys representative to the GTC Planning Committee. Angela Ellis will serve as the alternate representative.

5. Planning Committee Action Items

a.       Approval of Technical Amplification for FY 2002-2003 UPWP Task No. 6640 High Volume Bus Stop Pavement Management Study (City of Rochester)

John Thomas reviewed the Technical Amplification the City prepared for this study. Steve Gleason questioned the need for travel (for on-site visits) as part of the study. John Thomas and George Stam spoke in favor the need to look at applications in other communities, noting that the City wants to see a location(s) where similar pavement treatments has been used. Richard Garrabrant concurred with the importance of site visits and noted that NYSDOT can help out with information on innovative pavement/materials issues. Joan Dupont agreed with the utility of a site visit(s) for this project, provided that the expense is reasonable.

Steve Gleason requested that an executive summary be prepared as part of the project. John Thomas agreed to do this.

Richard Garrabrant motioned to accept the Technical Amplification for FY 2002-2003 UPWP Task No. 6640 High Volume Bus Stop Pavement Management Study. George Stam seconded. The motion passed unopposed.

b.      Recommendation to GTC Chairman regarding New Planning Committee Officers (GTC Staff)

Steve Gleason informed the Committee that Paul Howard would like to step down as Planning Committee Chairman. The Vice-Chairman slot has been vacant since Frank Dolan retired from Monroe County. Nominations for the two positions need to be submitted to Marvin Decker for his selection. Steve noted that David Woods has expressed interest in serving as Chairman. Kristen Hughes volunteered to take on the Vice-Chairman position. No other nominations were offered.

Larry Stid motioned to recommend David Woods as Chairman and Kristen Mark Hughes as Vice-Chairman of the Planning Committee. Joan Dupont seconded. The motion passed unopposed.

Larry Stid asked about the length of terms Planning Committee officers serve. Steve Gleason noted that there is no set term, rather officers serve at the pleasure of the GTC Board Chairman. A change in the GTC by-laws would be required to set terms of service. Richard Garrabrant noted that the Buffalo-Niagara Region rotates its officers annually. Paul Johnson suggested that the Planning Committee reaffirm its officers annually, which would allow current officers to step down if they wanted. This type of action would not require a change in the by-laws.

6. Planning Committee Information Items

a.       New approach for UPWP Project Management (GTC Staff)

Steve Gleason identified some concerns with how UPWP projects are being managed, including issues of timeliness, consistency, and scope wandering. He introduced some ideas developed by GTC staff for the development of project scopes (which would replace Technical Amplifications) and scheduled project reporting requirements. Project scopes would be more task-oriented and follow a set format. Every UPWP project would need to have its scope approved by the Planning Committee before it could start. A sample scope was distributed for the Committees review.

David Zorn asked whether GTC is looking for any budget information in the scope. Steve Gleason noted that this information is already in the UPWP, so it would not be necessary to include it in the project scope. He also noted that scopes could serve as the basis for Requests For Proposals (RFPs) developed for each project and that major changes in a projects scope would require approval from the Planning Committee.

Paul Johnson asked about the linkage between the UPWP, project scopes, and quarterly reports. Steve Gleason noted that the project information in the UPWP could form the basis for project scopes. David Zorn questioned whether this would take the place of quarterly reports. Steve Gleason responded that no, it will not.

Larry Stid suggested that the scopes should include language regarding how the projects respond to the goals in GTCs Long Range Plan. Steve Gleason agreed and noted that this could be included in the Purpose section of each project scope.

George Stam suggested that the project scopes include budgetary information. Larry Stid suggested that there be some standardization of the products expected from each UPWP project and that the sample scope should spell out which products are required.

Steve Gleason noted that member agencies would be expected to report on all of their UPWP projects at every Planning Committee meeting (a brief description of the progress made on each project). He handed out a sample reporting sheet and noted that member agency reports will be verbal GTC staff would fill in the reporting sheet at the meeting and include it with the minutes.

Terry Rice suggested the addition of a column that notes each projects expected completion date. Kristin Bennett suggested that the date each scope is approved be marked down on the reporting sheet (in lieu of a Yes/No in the Scope Approval box).

Jim Stack suggested that the most recent reporting sheet can be mailed out with the agenda package to remind Planning Committee members what was previously reported.

b.      Process for Programming the TIP Set-Aside for Regionally Significant Corridors (GTC Staff & NYSDOT)

Steve Gleason noted the work that GTC and NYSDOT staffs have done to progress this project and distributed a draft process they developed for selecting candidate corridors. He noted that several suggestions for projects were received in response to a GTC request in August 2001 and that GTC is looking for additional suggestions. He requested that new suggestions be submitted to GTC staff by April 10. The Planning Committee can discuss selection of the first years project at its April 18 meeting.

Paul Johnson questioned whether the suggested corridors have been evaluated against the selection criteria. Steve Gleason responded that no, they have not.

Larry Stid asked about how region is defined in the FHWA definition of a regionally significant project -- is it the TMA or the nine-county region. Steve Gleason responded that it is the nine-county region.

Joan Dupont noted that candidate corridor projects should have an impact on more than one or two jurisdictions.

Terry Rice noted that the stated criteria might be too limiting. Sharon Lilla inquired about whether the criteria are discretionary.

Steve Gleason noted that regionally significant as defined by the criteria tends to favor corridors oriented around roads on the state system. Joan Dupont concurred, with the addition of some county highways.

William Sullivan questioned whether GTCs Congestion Management System (CMS) would become a filter for the selection of Regional Corridor projects. Steve Gleason responded yes, but noted that the final decision rests with the Planning Committee. He also encouraged the Citys participation in the CMS Working Group; at this time, they have not participated.

John Thomas noted the selection criteria seem overly oriented to highway projects and that, since the City does not experience much congestion, the process is biased towards the suburbs. Steve Gleason noted that the CMS goes beyond looking at congestion, and is intended to be a broader performance management system.

Kristen Mark Hughes noted that non-highway projects should be considered. Steve Gleason noted that the studies advanced through this project will be mini Major Investment Studies and, therefore, will need to consider all modes of travel.

Paul Johnson questioned what the next steps in the process are. Steve Gleason responded that GTC is looking for suggestions on how to refine the process and for candidate corridors. These suggestions should be sent to GTC by April 10 so that they can be discussed at the next Planning Committee meeting.

Larry Stid offered some suggestions for wording changes in the Study Focus Area and Project Selection sections.

David Cook asked whether transit is being considered. Steve Gleason responded that, consistent with the mini-MIS approach, transit should be looked at as part of each project. Jim Stack noted that the FHWA definition is intended for use in identifying corridors, but that it does not limit the range of potential solutions.

c.       Regional Trails Initiative update (GTC Staff)

Steve Gleason reviewed the progress of the Regional Trails Initiative. Kristin Bennett distributed copies of the Draft Public Review Document and reviewed its contents. Steve Gleason talked about the high level of public involvement in this project.

d.      Federal Aid System 101 (NYSDOT)

Rob Slaver presented a tutorial on Federal Aid Road designation and the Functional Classification system. He noted that the Urbanized Area and TMA boundaries will be updated this year based on data from the 2000 Census.

Joan Dupont noted that the NYSDOT will be coordinating an update of the functional classification system with GTC and the counties in the region. Rob Slaver noted that there are limits on the number of miles that can be included in each functional class. Jim Stack added that a change in functional class also affects roadway design guidelines.

7.                 New Business

No new business

8.                 Next Meeting

The next Planning Committee meeting will be held on April 18, 2002 at the Rochester City Council Chambers

9.                 Adjournment

The meeting was adjourned at 11:55 a.m