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ELECTRONIC ITEM 4.4

ELECTRONIC ITEM 4 - nctcog.org · ELECTRONIC ITEM 4.4. ... Ken Shetter Mayor, City of Burleson ... Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport Wendy Davis Councilmember, City of Fort

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ELECTRONIC ITEM 4.4

Statement of Support

Trinity Parkway

The Regional Transportation Council along with the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG) together serve as the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the Dallas-Fort Worth area. The MPO would like to express its support for the Trinity Parkway and believes that this project is critical to the mobility of central Dallas and the entire North Texas region. The Greater Dallas region continues to experience significant population growth, even as other urban areas are losing population in the current economic climate. Population growth in the region is forecast to continue into the future, further aggravating the severe congestion in the downtown Dallas area. The Trinity Parkway is one strategy that will provide a much needed reliever route around the Dallas Central Business District, reducing delay on the congested Mixmaster and Canyon, and serving as an important alternate route for travelers around downtown, particularly during the planned construction of Project Pegasus on I.H. 35E and I.H. 30. The new roadway will be integrated with the City of Dallas’s Trinity River Balanced Vision Plan, which includes enhancements such as lakes, parks, trails, and other land use and development strategies throughout the Trinity River corridor. These elements will provide recreation opportunities, enhance quality of life, and encourage increased economic development around central Dallas. NCTCOG, the Texas Department of Transportation, and the North Texas Tollway Authority are working closely with numerous state and federal agencies, including the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, to ensure that the Trinity Parkway will not adversely affect any existing or planned flood control measures. The Trinity Parkway is consistent with Mobility 2030, the region’s approved Metropolitan Transportation Plan, where it is a key element in managing projected traffic growth in Dallas and the region along with other roadway improvements, the construction of managed lanes, and the expansion of light rail and commuter rail services. NCTCOG staff have reviewed the Trinity Parkway Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement and provided twenty-seven comments on the document for the North Texas Tollway Authority to review (See Attachment 1). In supporting the Trinity Parkway, NCTCOG emphasizes the following six points:

1. The importance in understanding the “need and purpose” for the Trinity Parkway 2. Recognizing the necessity for a transportation solution in downtown Dallas which is

accomplished in a context-sensitive manner 3. Identifying the need to adopt a strategic approach in working with the U.S. Army Corps

of Engineers on projects including the Trinity Parkway 4. Expediting construction from I.H. 45 and U.S. 175, allowing improvements to be made to

the S.M. Wright corridor 5. Considering environmental justice responsibilities of mobility, accessibility, and air

quality for residents of the southern sector of Dallas 6. Linking land use and transportation decisions in the region to better handle continued

and expected growth through sustainable development initiatives

Due to the critical nature of this project, NCTCOG is willing to continue to provide any assistance in the planning, design, funding, and implementation of the Trinity Parkway. All partners should continue to work together to strategically make improvements in the corridor.

About the Regional Transportation Council The Regional Transportation Council (RTC) of the North Central Texas Council of Governments has served as the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for regional transportation planning in the Dallas-Fort Worth area since 1974. The MPO works in cooperation with the region’s transportation providers to address the complex transportation needs of the rapidly growing metropolitan area. The Dallas-Fort Worth Metropolitan Area includes Collin, Dallas, Denton, Rockwall and Tarrant counties, as well as portions of Ellis, Johnson, Kaufman and Parker Counties. The RTC’s 43 members include local elected or appointed officials from the metropolitan area and representatives from each of the area’s transportation providers. More information can be found at www.nctcog.org. About the North Central Texas Council of Governments NCTCOG is a voluntary association of local governments established in 1966 to assist local governments in planning for common needs, cooperating for mutual benefit, and coordinating for sound regional development. NCTCOG's purpose is to strengthen both the individual and collective power of local governments and to help them recognize regional opportunities, eliminate unnecessary duplication, and make joint decisions.

NCTCOG serves a 16-county region of North Central Texas, which is centered around the two urban centers of Dallas and Fort Worth. Currently, NCTCOG has 231 member governments including 16 counties, 164 cities, 24 school districts, and 27 special districts.

NORTH CENTRAL TEXAS COUNCIL OF GOVERNMENTS

September 2007

November 6, 2007 Constitutional Amendment ElectionPosition Statement

Statewide Proposition 12

The constitutional amendment providing for the issuance of general obligation bonds by the Texas Transportation Commission in an amount not to exceed $5 billion to provide funding for highway improvement projects.

The Regional Transportation Council supports Statewide Proposition 12. If approved, $5 billion of new funding will be available to expedite needed transportation improvements.The Dallas-Fort Worth region alone has a $59 billion funding shortfall over the next 25 years.

City of Dallas Proposition 1

An ordinance amending Chapter 32, “Parks and Water Reservoirs,” of the Dallas City Code by adding Article VII (composed of Section 32-84) to prohibit the construction, maintenance, or improvement of, or the expenditure of funds for, any roadways within the Trinity River levees unless certain restrictions relating to use, location, number of travel lanes, and speed limits are met, and to provide for enforcement of the ordinance by suit for injunctive or declaratory relief and penalties not to exceed $500.

The Regional Transportation Council opposes City of Dallas Proposition 1. Since 1995, theTrinity Parkway has been planned as a toll road reliever to the Dallas Mixmaster (I.H. 35E/I.H. 30) and has been coordinated with flood protection and recreation improvements along theTrinity River. This is a critical project to reduce congestion, increase reliability, improve airquality, and provide sustainable development options within the City of Dallas.

Regiona l Transpor ta t ion Counc i l

For more information, contact Amanda Wilson at (817) 695-9284 or [email protected].

Surface TransportationTechnical CommitteeJill House, P.E., Chair

NCTCOG Executive Board 2007-2008

Regional Transportation Council 2007-2008

PresidentChad AdamsCounty Judge, Ellis County

Vice PresidentJohn MurphyMayor Pro Tem, City of Richardson

Secretary-TreasurerBobby WaddleMayor Pro Tem, City of DeSoto

Past PresidentT. Oscar Trevino, Jr., P.E.Mayor, City of North Richland Hills

DirectorCarter BurdetteCouncilmember, City of Fort Worth

DirectorBecky MillerMayor, City of Carrollton

DirectorKen ShetterMayor, City of Burleson

DirectorDavid DormanMayor, City of Melissa

DirectorMike CantrellCommissioner, Dallas County

DirectorB. Glen WhitleyCounty Judge, Tarrant County

DirectorKeith SelfCounty Judge, Collin County

DirectorLinda KoopCouncilmember, City of Dallas

DirectorCarter PorterMayor Pro Tem, City of Wylie

General CounselJerry Gilmore

Executive DirectorR. Michael Eastland

T. Oscar Trevino, Jr., P.E., ChairMayor, City of North Richland Hills

Linda Koop, Vice ChairCouncilmember, City of Dallas

B. Glen Whitley, SecretaryCounty Judge, Tarrant County

Ron BrownCommissioner, Ellis County

Dorothy BurtonCouncilmember, City of Duncanville

Mike CantrellCommissioner, Dallas County

Sheri CapehartCouncilmember, City of Arlington

Maribel Chavez, P.E.District EngineerTxDOT, Fort Worth District

Jan CollmerBoard ChairDallas/Fort Worth International Airport

Wendy DavisCouncilmember, City of Fort Worth

Maurine DickeyCommissioner, Dallas County

Rudy DurhamCouncilmemberCity of Lewisville

Loretta EllerbeCouncilmember, City of Plano

Becky MillerMayor, City of Carrollton

Jack MillerVice Chair North Texas Tollway Authority

Rich MorganCitizen Representative, City of Dallas

John MurphyMayor Pro Tem, City of Richardson

Ron NatinskyCouncilmember, City of Dallas

Rick StopferCouncilmember, City of Irving

John TatumCitizen Representative, City of Dallas

Marti VanRavenswaayCommissioner, Tarrant County

Cynthia WhiteCommissioner, Denton County

Bill WhitfieldMayor, City of McKinney

Kathryn WilemonCouncilmember, City of Arlington

Michael Morris, P.E.Director of Transportation, NCTCOG

Charles EmeryBoard ChairDenton County Transportation Authority

Mark EnochBoard ChairDallas Area Rapid Transit

Paul GeiselBoard MemberFort Worth Transportation Authority

John Heiman, Jr.Mayor Pro Tem, City of Mesquite

Kathleen HicksMayor Pro Tem, City of Fort Worth

Joe JaynesCommissioner, Collin County

Ron JensenCouncilmember, City of Grand Prairie

Ron JonesMayorCity of Garland

Jungus JordanCouncilmember, City of Fort Worth

Pete KampMayor Pro Tem, City of Denton

Bill McLendonCouncilmemberCity of Hurst

Mike LeymanCouncilmember, City of Mansfield

MEDIA RELEASE Contact: Lara Rodriguez

(817) 695-9247 (o) (214) 232-2246 (c)

[email protected] or

Michael Morris (817) 695-9241

[email protected]

10 Reasons to Build the Trinity Parkway Not Building Planned Toll Road Would End $4.8 Billion of Other Transportation Projects

Oct. 11, 2007 (Arlington) – Nearly $5 billion of much-needed transportation projects will be in jeopardy if voters pull the plug on the Trinity Parkway. Without the planned toll road, improvements to roads such as IH-35E, IH-30, US 67, and US 175 cannot be made. (See attached map). The Trinity Parkway, proposed as a toll road since 1995, is essential to relieving traffic congestion in and around downtown Dallas. Building the planned toll road will provide a reliever route to the downtown Dallas Mixmaster, the intersection of IH-35E and IH-30. Without a reliever route, it will be impossible to make the needed radial improvements such as adding additional lanes and replacing bridges. Reasons for building the toll road range from decreased congestion to improved air quality:

1. Mobility Benefits

15,000 vehicle hours per day of reduced congestion delay. 4.2 million vehicle hours of reduced congestion delay per year. $66 million reduction per year in the cost of congestion delays for the region.

2. Included in Regional Plan Since 1974 Recommended as a toll road since 1995.

3. Project (and those it directly impacts) Unlocks Downtown Dallas’ Congestion Nightmare The third most congested roadway bottleneck in the U.S. 10 percent reduction in regional congestion delay.

4. Safety Benefits - Downgrade S.M. Wright Elevated Sections Construction of the Trinity Parkway between U.S. 175 and I.H. 45 permits the

removal of the elevated S.M. Wright bridge structures. 5. Creates Opportunity to Rebuild Canyon/Mixmaster

Provides a reliever route that facilitates reconstruction of the Canyon/Mixmaster. 6. Air Quality Benefits

In 2015, the Trinity Parkway will reduce approximately 84 tons of nitrogen oxide and volatile organic compound emissions - a 10 percent reduction.

7. Reliability Benefits Unreliability of Canyon/Mixmaster would be benefited by the Trinity Parkway as a

reliever facility. 8. Regional Project for Dallas Residents

44 percent of road users live or work in the City of Dallas. 9. Recreation + Flood Control + Mobility = Dallas Economic Development Winner

Supported by the city of Dallas Economic Development Study. 10. Appropriate Need for Appropriate Facility/Thoroughfare Street Near the Park

Would be a Disaster Higher speed commuters by-passing congested freeways will lead to safety

concerns. Industrial Boulevard as a Trinity Parkway alternative contradicts the city of Dallas’

intended purpose in the Balanced Vision Plan for the Trinity River Corridor. The Regional Transportation Council of the North Central Texas Council of Governments opposes City of Dallas Proposition 1 that would prohibit building the Trinity Parkway as planned. About the Regional Transportation Council: The Regional Transportation Council (RTC) of the North Central Texas Council of Governments has served as the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for regional transportation planning in the Dallas-Fort Worth area since 1974. The MPO works in cooperation with the region’s transportation providers to address the complex transportation needs of the rapidly growing metropolitan area. The Dallas-Fort Worth Metropolitan Area includes Collin, Dallas, Denton, Rockwall and Tarrant counties, as well as portions of Ellis, Johnson, Kaufman and Parker Counties. The RTC’s 40 members include local elected or appointed officials from the metropolitan area and representatives from each of the area’s transportation providers. More information can be found at www.nctcog.org.

# # #

DRAFT-----OP ED for Submittal by Major Metro MPO ED’s Fixing bridges and potholes are not partisan matters, and with the gas tax and transportation authorization due to expire on June 30, Congress cannot let business as usual detour it from coming up with a multi-year answer to our nation’s surface infrastructure needs. As with all Washington deadlines, there is plenty happening behind the scenes, much of it encouraging. Senate Bill 1813, “Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century” (MAP-21), is already being hailed as a bipartisan compromise that would maintain funding levels while creating more accountability, sustainability and efficiency in transportation policy. It is, in many ways, true reform, and not another temporary extension of outdated legislation – the likes of which we’ve seen nine times since SAFETEA-LU (the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, and Efficient Transportation Equity Act) expired in September 2009. But finer points of the measure are still being negotiated in House-Senate conference committee, and with less than a month to go before the current authorization expires, there is no guarantee that billions of dollars in needed transportation funding – or 2.9 million associated jobs – won’t be jeopardized. Compounding all of this is H.R. 4348, which would essentially extend SAFETEA-LU a 10th time through Sept. 30. As representatives of several of the nation’s major metropolitan planning organizations who represent many millions of residents, cities, and counties---we strongly urge Congress to avoid another temporary fix, and to move thoughtfully and with a sense of purpose toward a multi-year solution. Our regions are major economic drivers for the nation and improving global competitiveness and ensuring a safe and reliable way to work are all common national goals. Kicking this can down the road with another bill extension not only fails to address our evolving transportation funding needs, but also exposes us to the potential for partisan stalemates or delays once that grace period ends. The nation cannot afford that – not with the number of essential highway and transit projects that would be put at risk nationwide, and not with 2.9 million jobs tied to the successful passage of the legislation. In addition, the overall economic impact of doing nothing is staggering. A 2011 study by the American Society of Civil Engineers estimated that “deficiencies in America’s surface transportation systems cost households and businesses nearly $130 billion” in vehicle operating costs, travel time delays, safety costs and environmental impact. In simplest terms, transportation infrastructure is fundamental to our long-term economic prosperity and quality of life, and figuring out how to fund it is perhaps never more important than in an unstable economy. MAP-21 addresses this, and more, by reforming transportation policy and better ensuring that funds are directed toward well-defined national objectives. An example is the bill’s inclusion of a new National Freight Program and establishment of the Office of Freight Planning and Development. Transportation represents about 10 percent of the U.S. economy, as measured in gross domestic product, and a significant portion of that (trillions of dollars in economic impact and several million jobs) is tied to freight and goods movement. Other provisions allow for early right-of-way acquisitions, expand the use of innovative contracting methods, reduce bureaucracy for projects with no significant environmental impact, and eliminate other forms of red tape. The bill also returns 95 percent of money received back to the states themselves, up from 92 percent under SAFETEA-LU.

There are a handful of modifications we would suggest. For example, we encourage the conference committee to reconsider how certain Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) costs are applied under the bill so not to divert funding from critical congestion relief projects which also do so much to help improve air quality. If the “encouraging” bipartisan cooperation cited by Committee Chair Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., holds true, we’re confident that these bumps in the road can be smoothed over and that MAP-21 becomes a true, multi-year program to address our surface transportation needs. Randy Blankenhorn, Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning Steve Heminger, Metropolitan Transportation Commission Irma San Roman, Miami-Dade Metropolitan Planning Organization Mike Eastland, North Central Texas Council of Governments Hasan Ikhrata, Southern California Association of Governments Barry Seymour, Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission