GENESEE TRANSPORTATION COUNCIL
PLANNING COMMITTEE MEETING
Ontario County Municipal Building
Canandaigua, New York
April 16, 2009
PLANNING COMMITTEE MEMBERS PRESENT
Angela Ellis, Livingston County
James Fletcher, Monroe County At Large
Erik Frisch, City of Rochester At Large
Tom Goodwin, Monroe County Planning Board
Daniel Hallowell, New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) Region 4
Kristen Mark Hughes, Ontario County (Chairperson)
Scott Leathersich, Monroe County At Large (Vice Chairperson)
Terrence J. Rice, Monroe County
Kevin Rooney, Wayne County
Mitch Rowe, Seneca County
William Sullivan, Rochester City Council
Douglas Tokarczyk, New York State Thruway Authority (NYSTA)
David Zorn, Genesee/Finger Lakes Regional Planning Council (G/FLRPC)
ALTERNATE REPRESENTATIVES PRESENT
David Cook, Rochester Genesee Regional Transportation Authority (RGRTA), representing Mark Aesch
PLANNING COMMITTEE MEMBERS ABSENT AND UNREPRESENTED
Robert Colby, Monroe County
Todd Gadd, Wyoming County
Robert Griffith, Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
Timothy Hens, Genesee County
Paul Holahan, City of Rochester
Gary Kent, Orleans County
Edward Muszynski, Empire State Development Corporation
Chuck Thomas, Rochester City Planning Commission
Steve Urlass, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
(Vacant), Monroe County Supervisors Association
(Vacant), NYS Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC)
(Vacant), Yates County
OTHERS IN ATTENDANCE
Eric Ameigh, City of Geneva
David Dunning, Monroe County Supervisors Association
Julie Gotham, GTC Staff
Don Higgins, Livingston County
Marvin Kleinberg, NYSDOT Region 4
Richard Perrin, GTC Staff
James Stack, GTC Staff
John Thomas, City of Rochester
Patrick Waterman, FRA Engineering
1. Call to Order & Introductions
The meeting was called to order at 10:05 a.m. Kristen Mark Hughes welcomed everyone and Members, Alternates, and others present introduced themselves.
2. Public Forum
No one from the public spoke during the Public Forum.
3. Approval of Minutes
James Fletcher moved for approval of the minutes from the February 12, 2009 Planning Committee meeting and the February 18, 2009 Special Planning Committee meeting; William Sullivan seconded the motion. The minutes were approved as presented.
4. Reports and Action on Old Business
a. Reports on UPWP Projects and Other Activities
Richard Perrin reported:
A meeting with the consultant for the Supplemental Professional Services Database Programming project is being scheduled to refocus attention on this project.
As part of Strategic Planning, GTC staff is continuing development of the cooperative planning agreement between GTC, NYSDOT, and RGRTA, which could be presented in May upon review by NYSDOT and RGRTA. Richard Perrin attended the Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (AMPO) Policy Committee meeting on February 19 and 20. There is a need to discuss how the successor to SAFETEA-LU affects Metropolitan Planning Organizations and what GTC members would like to see in the legislation to benefit the region.
As part of the Long Range Transportation Plan (LRTP) Update/Implementation, GTC staff has updated the Project Ready database with the recommendations of UPWP studies completed since the last LRTP and finished an inventory of completed TIP and State funded projects. GTC staff has drafted an outline for a transportation Operations & Maintenance component of the LRTP and development of performance standards. Richard Perrin participated in a joint meeting of the AMPO/American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) performance measurement work group. Performance measurement is expected to be an area of greater emphasis in the successor to SAFETEA-LU.
With regard to the Air Quality Planning and Outreach task, the Interagency Consultation Group has concurred with the GTC staff recommendation that all projects selected to receive funding through The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) are exempt for air quality conformity purposes. NYSDEC has recommended new ozone designations to the USEPA which recommend that Seneca County remain in attainment under the new National Ambient Air Quality Standard. The Draft New York State Energy Plan Interim Report has been made available for public review and comment. GTC staff is reviewing and will coordinate any proposed comments with the Association of New York State Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs). Comments are due by May 15. Richard Perrin participated in a National Cooperative Highway Research Program workshop on Greenhouse Gases. A draft report of the Interagency Consultation Group Peer Review has been completed.
For the GTC Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Program and SRTS Site Assessments, a draft guidebook is under internal review. GTC plans to finalize the guidebook for distribution to schools in the fall to allow for preparation during the school year and implementation in the spring. The consultant has provided final draft site assessments to the steering committees for the five selected schools.
For the Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) Strategic Plan Update, the third workshop was held on March 3. An inventory of current ITS deployment is complete and preliminary alternatives have been developed.
The RFP for the Diversion Route Planning Initiative was advertised March 20. Nineteen RFP packages have been sent to-date. Proposals are due May 1.
The 2007-2008 Priority Trails Advancement Program consists of three projects. The consultant has competed gap studies for the I-590 Bicycle Pedestrian Bypass project and is preparing materials for the second public meeting. The first public meeting for the Lehigh Valley (Honeoye Falls) project was held February 12 with a steering committee meeting held March 10. The consultant is completing gap studies. The consultant is preparing materials for the second public meeting for the Erie Canal Glenwood Lake Connector project, which is being scheduled.
Proposals for the 2008-2009 Priority Trails Advancement Program are due April 24. Eight application packages have been sent to-date. The emphasis of this round will be on near-term recommendations of the RTI. There is $100,000 available for studies.
The 2007 Circulation, Accessibility, and Parking (CAP) Program consists of four projects. The Village of Perry and Village of Hilton projects are complete. The Village of Macedon project was recommended for acceptance by the GTC Board at the January 8 meeting. A neighborhood forum/public meeting for the Browns Square Neighborhood project was held March 31.
The 2008 CAP Program consists of one project. A kickoff meeting for the Village of Fairport Central Business District study was held April 1. The consultant is progressing with an inventory of existing and planned conditions and a needs assessment.
For the Congestion Management Process (CMP), actual speeds on principal arterials from the Travel Time Data Collection Program have been incorporated into the GTC Travel Demand Model. The Model has been recalibrated based on the new speed data and the software has been upgraded to the latest version.
The Travel Time Data Collection Program is expected to be restarted this summer with data collection in the fall.
The Regional Goods Movement Strategy is expected to be restarted this summer with the RFP being issued in June.
Terry Rice asked if the SRTS assessment for the Rochester City School District site could be reviewed by the Rochester School Traffic Safety Committee. Erik Frisch responded that Andy Wheatcraft of the City of Rochester School District is on the steering committee for the SRTS site assessment.
David Zorn reported:
The Local Update of Census Addresses Phases 1 and 2 projects are complete.
The 2010 Census TAZ Analysis and Revisions project is progressing. G/FLRPC staff is continuing research and has begun the analysis.
Follow-up activities are being conducted for the 2008 Regional Land Use Monitoring project. G/FLRPC staff has begun entering the data and developing the report.
A draft report for the Historic Transportation Gateway Inventory and Assessment task is being developed.
The Preparing Village Main Streets for Planning project is complete.
The Optimizing Transportation Infrastructure through Effective Land Use project is complete.
Tom Goodwin reported:
Data for the 2008 Monroe County Land Use Monitoring project has been compiled and the analysis has begun. The County is awaiting a survey response from one municipality.
The Monroe County Parking Study is complete.
Terry Rice reported:
A consultant has been selected for the Monroe County Audible/Tactile Pedestrian Signal Device Study. Legislature approval of the contract is expected in June.
The Monroe County Overhead Traffic Sign Visibility Upgrade study is not complete as previously reported. The consultant completed the analysis of the signs on mast arms but not on spans. The overall analysis is approximately 95 percent complete. The final report will be presented at a future Planning Committee meeting.
A consultant has been selected for the Monroe County Vertical Curve Safety Study. Legislature approval of the contract is expected in June.
Funding for the Traffic Sign Retroreflectivity Study was relinquished by Monroe County and used to satisfy a portion of the FHWA funding rescission.
The Monroe County High Accident Location Program is 34 percent complete with analysis of seventeen locations conducted. A summary of past activities will be presented later in the meeting.
Kris Hughes reported:
The State Routes 96/318 Rural Corridor Study has been completed and a presentation is expected in May.
A consultant has been hired for the CATS Route Analysis and Service Improvement Plan. A kickoff meeting will be scheduled soon. Ontario County will be using social networking sites as part of the public participation component of the project.
City of Rochester
Erik Frisch reported:
No progress to report for the Port of Rochester Transportation Evaluation and Support Study.
Comments received from Monroe County on the final draft report for the Neighborhood Traffic Calming Concept Design and Implementation Study are being integrated.
A RFP for the Center City Tourist/Visitor Circulation and Pedestrian Wayfinding Study is under development.
The Center City Parking Development & Management project is complete.
The staff lead on the Susan B. Anthony Neighborhood Parking and Circulation Study project has changed and the project is progressing.
David Cook reported:
There is no progress to report for the Market Research for RGRTA Regional Services task.
The final draft of the RGRTA Suburban Transportation Service Study is complete and a public meeting has been scheduled.
The RTS/Lift Line Operational Analysis & Facility Utilization Study is complete.
The RTS Operational Process Study is complete.
The Steering Committee for the RTS Signal Prioritization Study reviewed two consultant proposals and selected a preferred consultant. The RGRTA Board needs to grant approval to proceed.
The Information Technology Assessment Study is approximately 85 percent complete.
The RGRTA Route Analysis project is on-going.
Richard Perrin reported:
The Genesee County Safe Passing Zone Survey is complete.
Richard Perrin reported:
The NYS Routes 5&20/414 Corridor Study is progressing. The Steering Committee has met three times. A public meeting has been scheduled for April 27.
Kevin Rooney reported:
The Cluster Development Enhancement Project Feasibility Study is progressing.
The Palmyra Route 21 Truck Study is complete.
Richard Perrin reported:
Funding for the Transportation Elements of Scenic/Historic Resources in Wyoming County project was relinquished by Wyoming County and used to satisfy a portion of the FHWA funding rescission.
Richard Perrin reported:
The Regional Traffic Count Collection Program consists of three contracts to conduct traffic counts in eight counties. Counts are complete in seven counties. Work has resumed in Monroe County for the 2008 count cycle. GTC is working with RGRTA to extend the contract covering Monroe County to include new funding programmed in the 2009-2010 UPWP for the 2009 count cycle. The consultant team has agreed to perform the work for the same rates as 2008.
NYSDOT is significantly expanding its count program to address new Highway Performance Monitoring System (HPMS) requirements and will be expanding its counts on non-state federal aid and local roads. GTC staff compared the NYSDOT candidate locations to the Regional Traffic Count Collection Program locations and found general consistency between the two.
With NYSDOT being responsible for counts on all federal-aid roads, GTC can consider supplementing the NYSDOT effort on non-federal aid roads, provided it is an allowable use of FHWA Metropolitan Planning (PL) funds.
Terry Rice asked for clarification that GTC will compare Monroe County count locations with the NYSDOT locations to determine the extent of coverage. Richard Perrin responded that the NYSDOT candidate locations will be provided to the counties to compare to the locations they requested as part of the Regional Traffic Count Collection Program.
John Thomas stated that the traffic count needs vary depending on many factors and are not the same year after year.
Terry Rice noted that many counties and NYSDOT focus their counts on segments while Monroe County includes points that relate to both segments and intersections. The information is used by Monroe County in their accident rate database and other analyses.
The first Steering Committee meeting for the Village of Arcade Main Street Study is being scheduled.
A public meeting for the Village of Geneseo Circulation and Parking Study was held on February 28. A Steering Committee meeting was held March 24.
The Dewey Avenue Corridor Traffic Calming Study is progressing. The consultant has developed the draft introduction, inventory, and needs assessment portions of the draft report.
A Steering Committee meeting for the Spencerport Eastern Village Corridor Concept Study was held on February 19. A public meeting was held on March 16.
The Route 250 Corridor Study is complete.
The Town of Macedon NYS Route 31 Corridor Study is progressing. GTC staff provided future land use projections on March 6. The consultant is completing an inventory.
The RFP for the Genesee County Central Corridor Plan has been drafted and GTC staff provided comments on April 13.
The Williamson Route 104 & Route 21 Gateway Concepts project is complete.
Based on the reimbursement request for the Victor Transportation Systems Plan, a significant amount of transportation data has been collected.
The Town of Penfield Bicycle Facilities Plan is expected to be presented to the Planning Committee in May.
Dan Hallowell mentioned that NYSDOT has been receiving a large number of FOIL requests from consultants conducting UPWP-funded studies. He suggested that consultants ask NYSDOT directly rather than with FOIL requests as this may simplify fulfilling the requests for information.
b. Any Other Old Business or Announcements
The City of Rochester has designated James McIntosh to serve as Paul Holohans alternate to the Planning Committee. The City of Rochester has appointed Erik Frisch as its At-Large member on the Planning Committee and Michael Leach has been designated as Mr. Frischs alternate.
Richard Perrin acknowledged John Thomas efforts and support to GTC over the years.
Dan Hallowell stated the NYSDOT Commissioner Glynn has resigned effective May 8. Also, NYDOT Region 4 Director Kevin OBuckley has announced that he will retire in June.
Mitch Rowe announced that the Seneca County Board of Supervisors has passed a memorializing resolution seeking to designate NYS Route 96A as the Sampson Veterans Memorial Highway.
1. Update on the status of projects funded via The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
Dan Hallowell distributed a summary of the status of projects funded via ARRA as of April 14. NYSDOT Region 4 has completed Plans, Specifications, & Estimates (PS&E) on all but two of its projects. Local project sponsors have achieved Design Approval on $37.5 million worth of projects.
Dan informed the committee that the Governor must certify that each project meets ARRA requirements prior to funding being made available. The Certifications are not happening until PS&E is complete. NYSDOT Region 4 is working with NYSDOT Main Office and the Governors office to accelerate the process.
Dan stated that NYSDOT Region 4 will present updated information to the TDC on April 30. He would like the TDC to discuss how to address projects on the Illustrative list. The Governors office announced a higher regional allocation than originally anticipated. In addition, the region is realizing savings on ARRA projects. At this time, approximately $3.2 million is available to pursue projects on the Illustrative list.
Dan stated that NYSDOT Region 4 has reduced the cost of the proposed treatment for the I-390 (NYS Thruway to I-590) VPP project, which is the first project on the Illustrative list, to an amount that can be covered by the savings on other ARRA projects. He asked about moving the project from the illustrative list to the selected list. Richard Perrin responded that Resolution 09-10 allows for projects on the illustrative list to be moved to the selected list and programmed in the TIP without further action by GTC should additional funding become available. Once a PIN and TIP number are assigned, NYSDOT Region 4 (or any sponsor) can progress a project.
Terry Rice stated that the I-390 project is easy to consider due to the work already completed on the project. It will be more difficult to consider other projects on the illustrative list due to the various levels of effort that project sponsors have made to advance their projects and the amount of funding that becomes available.
Dan Hallowell stated that all local agreements have been sent to project sponsors but not all have been returned.
Richard Perrin stated that he received a call from the New York State Attorney Generals office to discuss the process to select projects to receive ARRA funding and to gain a better understanding of the organizational and governance structures of MPOs in New York State.
Richard Perrin informed the Committee that NYSDOT Main Office has requested that MPOs certify that their project selection process meets the criteria of ARRA by mid-May. Since the GTC Board does not meet until June, GTC staff can only provide the associated resolution with Planning Committee recommendation to the Board in that timeframe with the final resolution based on Board action forwarded in June.
Erik Frisch noted that the City of Rochester has submitted the East Henrietta Road project for Design Approval. Dan Hallowell responded that he signed off on the design report on April 15.
John Thomas asked if the savings on ARRA projects are from projects that are falling behind the milestone dates. Dan Hallowell responded that they are not. The savings are based on bid openings or reduced PS&E estimates. Terry Rice added that Monroe County has two projects that are not federal aid-eligible and will be removed from the program, which creates some additional savings.
2. Update on the development of the 2010-2014 Transportation Improvement Program
Richard Perrin informed the Committee that NYSDOT Main Office has announced that they will be postponing the update of the Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP) until the summer of 2010. Although they have not specified when the regional TIP needs to be updated, the TIP does need to be updated on a schedule consistent with the STIP update and adopted prior to the STIP being submitted for federal approval.
Richard stated that the intention is still to update FFY 2010, FFY 2011, and FFY 2012 of the current TIP to complete the righting the ship exercise that GTC has been advancing since summer 2008.
Richard stated that the current plan to update the TIP aims to have the TIP adopted in December 2009. This will allow sufficient time to complete the air quality conformity process prior to the STIP update. Additionally, the next surface transportation legislation authorization may affect formula fund allocations, which would affect the amount of funding available for projects. GTC staff will discuss the TIP update in more detail with the TDC on April 30.
5. Action Items
a. Action concerning classification of FY 2009-2010 UPWP tasks in accordance with the GTC Public Participation Plan
Richard Perrin provided background on the GTC Public Participation Plan and discussed the GTC staff recommendations for new UPWP tasks.
Erik Frisch moved to approve classifying FY 2009-2010 Unified Planning Work Program tasks in accordance with the GTC Public Participation Plan; William Sullivan seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.
b. Recommendation to the GTC Board concerning accepting submission of a summary memorandum as evidence of completion of UPWP Task 6230 / Proposed Council Resolution 09-12
Terry Rice discussed the summary of activities to-date on the Monroe County High Accident Location Program.
Richard Perrin noted that GTC staff asked Monroe County to prepare and present a summary of the activities similar to what other agencies do for on-going activities.
Kevin Rooney moved to recommend approval of Proposed Council Resolution 09-12; James Fletcher seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.
c. Action concerning amending the 2007-2012 TIP by modifying the names of select projects that will benefit from funding provided via The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 to more accurately describe said projects / Proposed Planning Committee Resolution 09-3
Richard Perrin discussed the need to modify project names. He added that the proposed Resolution only modifies the project name and there is no change to the project scopes or budgets. These changes would more accurately describe the ARRA funded projects.
Richard stated that this Planning Committee action is an Administrative Modification as defined in 23 CFR 450.104 and does not need to be acted upon by the GTC Board.
Terry Rice moved to recommend approval of Proposed Planning Committee Resolution 09-3; William Sullivan seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.
d. Action concerning UPWP Project Scopes of Work.
Chairman Hughes suggested considering the three scopes of work under a single motion; no one objected.
1. Task 6211 Monroe County Sign Inventory Location Upgrade
Terry Rice discussed the proposed scope of work.
2. Task 6352 Center City Circulator Study
Erik Frisch discussed the proposed scope of work.
3. Task 7601 City of Geneva Lakefront/Downtown Connectivity Study
Eric Ameigh discussed the proposed scope of work.
Angela Ellis asked if the City of Geneva has identified particular agencies for the steering committee. Eric Ameigh responded that they expect NYSDOT, Ontario County, and City of Geneva participation at a minimum. Kris Hughes suggested the City seek to include a representative from the trucking industry on the steering committee.
Terry Rice moved to approve the Scopes of Work for Tasks 6211, 6352, and 7601 as presented; James Fletcher seconded the motion. The motion passed unopposed.
6. New Business
Terry Rice raised an issue regarding the Transportation Enhancement Program (TEP). Monroe County received a letter from NYSDOT Main Office regarding the TEP awards and was informed that their project was not funded.
Terry summarized the application and evaluation processes for developing the regional list of TEP priorities that was adopted by the GTC Board. He noted that the Transportation Enhancements Advisory Committee (TEAC) selected five projects in the region to receive funding. In doing so, the TEAC skipped the regions fourth priority and funded the fifth and sixth priorities, even though there was sufficient funding for the fourth priority. Regardless of the fact that the project that was skipped was an MCDOT project, he feels that the TEAC should respect the regional priorities and that this could happen to another agency in the future.
Richard Perrin informed the committee that he had shared his frustration as well with NYSDOT Region 4. Richard stated that GTC staff spend a significant amount of time on the TEP process to develop the regional list of priorities cooperatively with NYSDOT Region 4. That level of effort may not be justifiable in the future if the TEAC does not provide an appropriate response as to why the adopted regional list of TEP priorities was not followed.
Dan Hallowell stated some other NYSDOT Regions/MPOs used criteria that was different from the criteria in the TEP guidance. NYSDOT Region 4 and GTC used the TEP criteria as provided by NYSDOT Main Office. He added that regional priorities have been skipped in the past when there was not sufficient funding for a higher priority project. Most importantly, it has been stated repeatedly from the very beginning of the process that the TEAC has the final say on the selection of projects and does not have to follow the regional list of priorities.
James Fletcher noted that the Town of Penfield strongly supported the project that was skipped.
The Committee agreed that there is a need for additional discussion on this matter.
a. Update and discussion on upcoming authorization of surface transportation legislation
Richard Perrin discussed the upcoming surface transportation authorization process to develop the successor to the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU). SAFETEA-LU expires on September 30, 2009. It is unlikely that successor legislation will be in place by then SAFETEA-LU was signed into law more than a year after the previous legislation expired.
Richard discussed the current status of the legislation in Washington D.C., noting the various degrees of progress on drafts of the bill in the Senate and House of Representatives.
At the national level, there have been discussions to move beyond the TEA era begun in 1991. Major issues likely to be included in the next authorization include identifying a sustainable funding stream for the Highway Trust Fund, integrating climate change and energy use in the transportation planning and programming processes, and establishing the use of performance measures to determine levels of funding to regions and states.
Through his participation on the Association of Metropolitan Planning Organizations (AMPO) Policy Committee, Richard is seeking to identify how we, as a region, can best ensure that the needs of this region are considered in the development of national policies that will be included in the next authorization legislation. He asked if Planning Committee members would be interested in convening a working group to discuss member views and needs within the context of national policies in the legislation. There was a general agreement to have such a forum and continue the various efforts to-date.
7. Public Forum
No one from the public spoke during the Public Forum.
8. Next Meeting
May 14, 2009 at the Rochester City Council Chambers.
The meeting adjourned at 11:56 a.m.