Monday, September 25, 2006

[Trimet] Choices for Federal mass transit $$

We're invited to comment on projects totalling $111.7 million already preapproved by Metro's Joint Policy Advisory Committee to fund through Metro's Transportation Priorities 2008-11, a regional process to schedule distribution of approximately $45.4 million in federal transportation funds.

So, there's funds for 40.6% of the total proposed. Many projects will be left by the wayside, typically those not supported. Look these over and make sure to tell Metro, your city and county government transportation departments what's important to you.

Projects in the chronically underserved and underfunded Clackamas County are:

Bike and Trail

6 Springwater Trail-Sellwood Gap: 19th to Umatilla – $1,237,000
Completes the .9-mile missing link in the existing Springwater multi-use path, providing a continuous 19-mile trail between Gresham and downtown Portland.

7 Trolley Trail: Jefferson to Glen Echo – $1,586,000
Constructs the northern section (4.75 miles) of a 6-mile, multi-use path that follows an abandoned streetcar right of way between Milwaukie and Gladstone.

9 Multi-Use Path Master Plans: Lake Oswego to Milwaukie, Tonquin Trail, Mt. Scott – Scouters’ Mtn. Loop Trail – $300,000
Prepares master plans for several multi-use paths to define alignments, preliminary designs, right-of-way impacts, environmental assessments and cost estimates.


12 Milwaukie Town Center: Main and Harrison Streets – $450,000
Improvements include bike lanes, 15 foot sidewalks, planter strips, lighting, benches and ADA-compliant sidewalk ramps along four blocks in downtown Milwaukie.


15 Milwaukie Light Rail Environmental Impact Statement: Portland central city to Milwaukie town center – $2,000,000
Federally required work prior to completing negotiations with the Federal Transit Administration to receive federal transit funding for construction of the project.

16 Powell/Foster Corridor Plan: Phase II – $200,000
The outcome of this planning process will be a set of feasible transportation improvements for the corridor with implementation, phasing and funding strategies.

17 Willamette Shoreline – Highway 43 Alternatives Analysis: Portland South
Waterfront to Lake Oswego – $688,000
Explore options for enhancing bus service, pedestrian, bicycle, water transport or passenger rail in order to broaden access and improve travel opportunities.

Road and Highway


20 McLoughlin Boulevard: I-205 to Highway 43 Bridge – $3,000,000
Constructs the first phase of a boulevard retrofit of McLoughlin Boulevard in Downtown Oregon City.


24 I-5 to Highway 99W Corridor Study – $500,000 Completes planning work for a proposed four-lane, limited-access highway between Highway 99W near Sherwood and I-5 near Tualatin and Wilsonville.

25 Southwest Kinsmen Road Extension: Barber to Boeckman – $1,400,000
Extends Kinsman Road to provide a direct north-south connection for freight access to I-5 for the industrial areas in West Wilsonville.

Road Capacity

34 Southwest Boeckman Road: 95th to Graham’s Ferry Road – $1,956,000
Extends Boeckman Road to provide a multi-modal link from the Villebois Village in Wilsonville to industrial and employment areas, the Wilsonville Commuter Rail Station and Transit Center, I-5 and the Wilsonville Town Center.

36 Southeast 172nd Avenue: Sunnyside to Highway 212 – $2,000,000
Improves access to the proposed Rock Creek industrial area by widening 172nd to five lanes and adding sidewalks and bike lanes.


45 I-205 Light Rail – $17,700,000
Project extends light rail from the Gateway regional center to the Clackamas regional center along I-205 and (in a spirit of pork for everyone) adds light rail to the transit mall between Union Station and PSU in downtown Portland.

46 South Metro Amtrak Station: Phase II – $900,000
Project provides parking spaces and relocation of old Oregon City Southern Pacific railroad depot building to the site to serve the new station.

48 Wilsonville to Beaverton Commuter Rail – $4,467,000
Provides track and station improvements and rail vehicles to begin transit service on existing freight rail tracks.

* Frequent Bus Improvements: regionwide – $5,400,000
Increases safe access to transit service and improves customer amenities at bus stops along Frequent and Rapid Bus Corridors identified in the Regional Transportation Plan.

These are "regional flexible funds" from the Surface Transportation Program and the Congestion/Mitigation Air Quality (CMAQ) program. The funds are disbursed every two years for a wide range of local planning and construction projets that typically lack other dedicated sources of funding.

A 45-day comment period will open with release of a first cut project list on October 13, 2006, and end on December 1. Comments may be submitted in writing by e-mail, fax (503-797-1911), phone (503-797-1900) or postal mail
Ted Leybold
Metro Planning Dept.
600 NE Grand Ave.
Portland, OR 97232

The list of projects will be posted on the Metro website beginning October 13, 2006.

The four listening posts shown below will be held in different parts of the region where people may comment in person. To ensure that oral testimony is accurately recorded, we encourage people to also submit their comments in writing.

5 p.m. Thursday, November 9
East Multnomah County
Gresham City Hall Building, Springwater Trail Room
1333 NW Eastman Parkway, Gresham
(on the Blue MAX)

5 p.m. Monday, November 13
Beaverton Community Center
12350 SW Fifth St, Beaverton
(bus lines 57 and 76)

5 p.m. Tuesday, November 14
Pioneer Community Center
615 Fifth Street, Oregon City
(bus lines 76, 78, and 88).

5 p.m. Thursday, November 16
Metro Regional Center
600 NE Grand Avenue, Portland
(bus line 6 and Blue/Red MAX).

More detail on process via the Comments link below.

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1 comment:

John Bartley K7AAY said...

Projects come from lots of sources--trail groups, pedestrian groups, neighborhood associations, for example, but they must be submitted by a "qualifying" party--a jurisdiction (e.g., city or county) or transit agency in the Metro region. The solicitation for this MTIP were issued last April with a deadline of June 30 to be submitted.

All the projects are then sorted by mode (auto, road, planning, bike and ped, transit, etc.) and given a technical score. (Planning projects cannot be given a technical score, because no actual work has been done on them.) The projects are then prioritized using qualitative criteria, too, such as whether they help alleviate an inequity in the transportation system, whether they reduce air pollution (part of the federal requirements), or whether they help complete projects already started.

Whether the applicant has matching funds and local support also come into play. From this, the Joint Policy Advisory Committee (transportation directors and transit representatives from cities and counties in the Metro region plus Vancouver and Clark County, Washington) create a "First Cut" list, which is longer than what can actually be funded. The public is asked to comment on this First Cut list to help narrow it to a draft final list. This comment period is for the First Cut list. The final draft list will also be put out for public comment early in 2007.