PANEL ON I-70 CDOT PEIS:
Meeting Notes: 4/14/05
Bill Linfield, TOS Public Works, Chair, 1-70 PEIS Coalition Technical Committee
Bill Wallace, Summit County Commissioner
Linfield Presentation on Draft PEIS, Tier 1:
· Public comments deadline May 24
· 20 alternatives developed
· I-70 Coalition = 30 member town or county jurisdictions
· Technical Committee, mostly engineer types
· 50 minute slide show to be summarized
· Tech comm. Recommends, CDOT decides
· by 2025 weekday traffic will be at today’s weekend volume
· $ threshold dividing “reasonable” from “unreasonable” = $4.1 Billions
· not preferred, do not meet traffic demand expectations
· minimum action = key safety and congestion improvements such as climbing lanes, education, (including revamping Silverthorne exchange), metering $1.3 B
· preferred, meet traffic projections
· 6 laning, either @ 55 MPH or 65 MPH which differ due to sharpness of curves
· HOV, HTV lanes (reversible)
· Transit lanes for the future
· “Unacceptable” alternatives = exceed $4 B threshold
· AGS, advanced guideway, $6 B
· Bus guideway
· Additional considerations
· Environmental and economic impact analysis
· Construction to start 2010
· Construction completion 2025
· 30 members of coalition are expected to agree
· at most $1.3 B available from state, additional Fed revenue is more likely if there is consensus
· 1990’s MIS study concluded that some transit alternative is best
· 1999, Monorail approved by voters in Summit
· monorail would use magnetic technology
· urban speeds 125 MPH
· change in state administration changed opinion and led to new CDOT study, $20 M so far
· Concerns re: PEIS
· Didn’t follow MIS
· No air quality impact assessment
· YES, CDOT will have to listen to Coalition
· T-REX has cost $1.7 B
· Questions $4 B cap – WHY?
· Why not do pieces of transit, no need to swallow entire elephant at one time
· PEIS has no vision
Bill L: CDOT has a preconceived idea, but coalition support may have to change that
Bob French (Commissioner): Laning is what Governor Owens wants
Sandy: Car dependence is assumed; surge in gas costs + predictions that we are at peak petroleum production now will change that
Shirley: oil will all be gone
??: why not railroad from Denver to SC via Boreas pass; can carry cars
Carlos: $4.1 B is in today’s costs, as cost of gas increases, cost of project will also increase.
Mark Camp: How well do CDOT’s studies play out for accuracy historically? Are their traffic #s realistic? RESP: this study has been underway for several years so the model should be tested on accuracy to date.
Yvonne: What assumptions were used to come up with the increased traffic projections? Does it include increased commercial traffic? Do we know what the breakdown is between autos and commercial? Has the trucking trade group lobbied for a particular alternative? RESP: They did look at everything. It’s in the PEIS. I can’t give you the exact numbers.
Catherine Gant: Does the proposal include upgrades to Hwy 40 and alternate routes? RESP: All alternate routes were thrown out as viable options.
Doug Malkan: When the question of safety was addresses, 6 laning = most dangerous; The bus guideway was rated as barely over the $4 B threshold. Do we have to live with $4B? RESP (Bob French): No one in the coalition wants to live with $4.1 B .
Tom Parsons: What consideration has been given to local transit?
Annette: regarding AGS, how do people travel after monorail stops?
Bill W. : It is done elsewhere, in Europe. There may be $$ for transit after 6 lanes are built. Traffic projections are higher than likely.
Concern raised about commercial vehicle impact.
Spence: People want cars, how do they get around once they reach transit destination?
Bill W.: We need a vision for the transit alternatives.
Thomas Davidson: Winter traffic is destination bound usually (ski resort), summer traffic is more dispersed and elaborate transportation alternatives needed. Also, what about through traffic to Utah?
Bill W.: in response to question re: tolling, state law limits tolling to new capacity and HOV lanes (for single passenger vehicles)
Bob Berwyn: Considering the May 24th deadline, how will the county reach a consensus statement?
Bill W. piece by piece; transit
Bob F.: still listening, forget the $4 B limit; extra tunnels will be needed in all alternatives to accommodate peak period use and to accommodate reversible lanes.
Considerations for transit costs? What if it is privately run? Pricing is critical. Unknown price of gas?
Transit costs a lot to build but has less economic impact to communities.
John M. commercial vehicles could be replaced by use of transit for goods, will require subsidy (all forms are subsidized); CDOT has a guaranteed right of way. We must be sure that if laning alternative is chosen it does not preclude transit or it provides for transit at a future date.
Van: By 2025, will traffic be maxed out? RESP: There is the trend view versus the optimistic view. By 2025, the time to travel is longer and the traffic flow is greater. A vision is needed. PEIS doesn’t offer this.
Del: We will need cultural/behavioral change to accept transit.
Carla: We should hear from Ed Rapp who has studied the monorail alternative, done a marketing analysis.
RESP to Q’s: Pollution-air, water—costs are not addressed in PEIS.
Bill L. The “no action” alternative does include $0.5 B safety/maintenance improvements currently programmed, including 4 lanes to Breck – 9; The minimum action alternative includes more with climbing lanes, curve straightening.
Don: Let’s fix the “pinch points” and prepare for better transit in the future, instead of committing to wholesale replacement with 6 lanes.
There will be coalition meeting on May 5,6 in Grandby.
Next Our Future Summit: May 12