Albuquerque, New Mexico
The City of Albuquerque’s Transit Department in coordination with the City of New Mexico’s Highway and Transportation Department, the Middle Rio Grande Council of Governments are proposing to undertake a High Capacity Transportation System (HCTS) Study. The study is anticipated to respond to Albuquerque metropolitan planning area needs and the opportunity to develop a transportation system, which will help to ensure the quality of life and economic vitality for the people of New Mexico, in the 21st Century. Planning for the proposed HCTS will be completed in two phases. Phase I will develop a conceptual high capacity transportation system plan, which is anticipated to be completed in December 1999. Phase II will identify a set of corridors from which approximately three alternatives will be chosen for detailed analysis. A Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) will be selected and a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) will be prepared. The DEIS is anticipated to be completed in December 2001. Alternatives that are being studied include: No-build, roadway improvements, new roadways, Travel Demand Management/Transportation System Management (TDM/TSM), including Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) applications, bus service improvements, express bus and park-and-ride service, High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes, busways, commuter rail, light rail, automated guideway, personal rapid transit, and a combination of modes. The High capacity corridors have been incorporated into the region’s Metropolitan Transportation Plan. It is anticipated that HCTS will be adopted in the Transportation Improvement Program in early 1999. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $4.96 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort
The Georgia Rail Passenger Authority (GRPA) is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine the feasibility of various transportation improvements in the 70-mile transportation corridor between downtown Atlanta and downtown Athens, Georgia. The options under evaluation include a No-build option, Transportation Systems Management (TSM) options, including commuter bus service on existing roads, and commuter rail service on the existing CSX line between Athens and Atlanta. The GRPA has submitted a preliminary draft of the MIS for review by the public, the Georgia Department of Transportation (GADOT), the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC), the Athens-Clarke Metropolitan Planning Organization, and the transit operators in the Atlanta and Athens areas. It is recognized that an additional analysis of ridership, capital and operating costs and financing will be conducted as part of the MIS.
The Georgia Rail Passenger Authority (GRPA), in coordination with the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT), is advancing the 1997 Intercity Rail Plan with its program of combined intercity/commuter rail service in North and Middle Georgia. The plan calls for commuter rail service to Griffin and intercity services beyond to Macon, Georgia. The proposed line will serve seven counties (Bibb, Monroe, Lamar, Spalding, Henry, Clayton, and Fulton). The GRPA has undertaken a study to update the 1997 GDOT Intercity Rail Plan in preparation for completing a Major Investment Study (MIS) in the corridor. Plans for the initial service outline the utilization of over 102 miles of an existing Norfolk Southern commercial freight line. Total capital costs for the initial service from Atlanta-Griffin-Macon is estimated at $163.12 million. The Georgia General Assembly has appropriated approximately $4 million to continue with the MIS and follow-up activities.
The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine transportation options in a proposed 15-mile corridor extending from the South campus of the Georgia Perimeter College, north to the Emory University area. The proposed corridor also includes the Centers for Disease Control and medical center complex, and continues on to the existing Lindbergh Center Station on MARTA’s North Line. Phase I of the MIS is projected for completion in May 1999. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $2.65 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Maryland Mass Transit Administration (MTA) has decided not to pursue this effort at this time. The most cost-effective alignment is not acceptable to the public, or locally elected officials.
Baltimore, Maryland-Washington, D.C.
The Mass Transit Administration of the Maryland Department of Transportation (MD DOT) is conducting a Conceptual Planning, Site Selection and Economic Feasibility Study for the Maryland Commuter Rail (MARC) maintenance facility. This study is one of several recommendations resulting from the MARC Master Plan completed in 1995. The purpose of the study is to locate, plan, and design a centralized maintenance facility for the MARC system. Currently, maintenance and storage activities are performed in multiple facilities owned and operated by Amtrak and CSXT in the Baltimore and Washington metropolitan area. A preferred site has been selected and the results of the Economic Feasibility Study will determine when the environmental documentation and preliminary engineering work will be conducted. The proposed site is located in the southwest area of Baltimore City along the MARC Penn-Camden Connection. The first phase of the project was funded by the MD DOT.
Baltimore, Maryland-Washington, D.C.
The Maryland Mass Transit Administration (MTA) is in need of a mid-day storage facility for MARC commuter trains. Presently, these vehicles are stored at platforms at Washington, D.C.’s Union Station. Once Amtrak begins operating its new high speed trains in late 1999, the current storage area will no longer be available to MARC. In addition, once MARC service to Frederick begins, mid-day storage for three additional train sets will be necessary. MTA has identified a five-acre site owned by Amtrak, which could potentially be a suitable alternative location for their mid-day storage needs. Environmental studies on the proposed site have been initiated
Baltimore, Maryland-Washington, D.C.
The Mass Transit Administration of the Maryland Department of Transportation (MD DOT) is conducting a Conceptual Planning, Environmental Documentation and Preliminary Engineering Study for the Maryland Commuter Rail (MARC) Penn-Camden Rail Connection. This study is one of several recommendations resulting from the MARC Master Plan completed in 1995. The Penn-Camden Connection is a proposed six-mile connection between MARC’s Camden Station and Amtrak’s NECusing mostly existing railroad right-of-way owned by CSXT, Conrail and Amtrak. The study is evaluating the feasibility of connecting the CSXT Capital subdivision (Camden Line) and Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor (NEC) - Penn Line - to provide access to the planned MARC maintenance facility. The proposed project is also anticipated to provide a new route for the MARC Camden Line reverse peak service, and allow Camden Yard Sport trains to resume service. This connection will not include any passenger service. It will provide a means for MARC trains to assess the planned maintenance facility, which will be built within the right-of-way, and the mid-day storage facility. It will also permit easy access to both the Penn and Camden lines. A preferred alignment was selected in 1995 during the MARC Master Plan Study. The preferred alignment is located in southwest Baltimore City. Subsequent to the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) approval of the environmental analysis, final design, right-of-way acquisition and construction will be initiated. The proposed project is expected to begin service in the year 2002.
Baltimore, Maryland-Washington, D.C.
The Maryland Mass Transit Administration (MTA) is currently in Phase 2 of an environmental analysis and early engineering effort on the proposed Silver Spring Transit Intermodal Center (SSITC). The proposed site is located on an existing bus and Metrorail station and is included in the approved Silver Spring Central Business District (CBD) Master Plan. The recommended alternative of the SSITC will create a full service intermodal transit center at the site of the existing transit operations in downtown Silver Spring. The purpose of the proposed project is to meet existing and future transit needs and to allow for the safe and convenient passenger transfers from one mode of travel to another. The varying modes of travel located at the proposed site include commuter rail, heavy rail, commuter and transit bus, automobile, taxi, bicycle and pedestrians. The total site proposed for the SSITC is a 9.7-acre parcel of land located at the southwest corner of Colesville Road (US Route 29) and Wayne Avenue in the CBD of Silver Spring. The site is comprised of parcels owned by Montgomery County and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transportation Authority (WMATA). The project is scheduled for completion in the spring of 1999. Total capital costs for the SSITC are estimated at $36 million.
The Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport), in coordination with the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA), conducted a Major Investment Study/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (MIS/DEIS) on transportation improvements to enhance the intermodal connection between Logan International Airport and the Boston regional transit system and ease airport roadway and curb congestion. The study included bus as well as People Mover alternatives. During the MIS process, Massport determined that improvements to the bus system at Logan Airport and the addition of bus service to South Station would be more cost-effective than a People Mover. Massport suspended work on the MIS/DEIS and further developed the bus alternative now known as the Airport Intermodal Transit Connector (AITC) under an environmental assessment (EA). The project involves two routes: one connecting South Station in Boston to the airport via the South Boston Transitway and the new Ted Williams Tunnel (Central Artery) and the second connecting the MBTA’s Blue Line to airport terminals. Massport will operate dual mode buses (electric trolley/diesel) on the South Station to Logan International Airport route and alternative fueled buses on the Blue Line/Terminals route. The Federal Transit Administration has approved the EA for the AITC and Massport is now prepared to move ahead with the project which is programmed in the Massachusetts State Transportation Improvement Program and Boston Transportation Improvement Program. The estimated cost to design and implement the AITC is approximately $40 million.
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) has previously conducted a series of feasibility studies for improvements to the North Shore transportation system. These studies evaluated extensions of the Blue Line; improved commuter rail and express bus services; and the connection of the Blue Line and North Shore commuter rail service in Revere. Area officials now intend to further evaluate these alternatives for the corridor by focusing on operational impacts to the MBTA system, ridership analysis, capital and operating costs, community impacts, environmental impacts and cost/benefit analyses. This project is not in the Boston area Long Range Transportation Plan. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.99 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) is conducting a Major Investment Study/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (/MIS/DEIS) to examine transit options in the corridor between North Station and South Station in downtown Boston. The alternatives under consideration include a bus shuttle system as a transportation systems management (TSM) option and various configurations of a rail tunnel. The tunnel would be constructed under the Central Artery alignment and would permit through commuter rail transit to serve both downtown stations. Currently, MBTA commuter rail service is split into two completely separate services, one serving the North Station and the other serving the South Station. The project is included in the "future projects" section of the Boston area Long Range Transportation Plan, but is not in the financially constrained plan. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.496 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
This project involves the construction of a commuter rail layover facility in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. The project is a joint Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT/Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) venture for the design and construction of 6-9 track commuter rail yard for the purpose of overnight layover/storage and future light maintenance of commuter rail equipment. This project is to serve both the existing Providence-Boston service and Rhode Island’s future Providence-Westerly service. The twelve-acre parcel is situated adjacent to and east of the Amtrak Main Line. As part of the existing agreement with the MBTA, RIDOT will fund the design and construction of the yard in exchange for ten years of commuter rail service to the Providence Station. The total project cost is estimated at $10 million. The project is included in Rhode Island’s Transportation Plan, and Transportation Improvement Program (TIP).
Charlotte, North Carolina
The North-South Corridor extends approximately 36.4 miles from Davidson in North Mecklenburg County through Center City Charlotte to Pineville in southern Mecklenburg. This corridor was identified in the Centers and Corridors Plan adopted by the Charlotte Council and Mecklenburg County Board of Commissioners in 1994 and reaffirmed through inclusion in the approved 2015 Long Range Transportation Plan. The scoping meeting for the Phase I environmental analysis is scheduled for January 1999. Several alternatives will be considered as part of the study. These include: No-build; Transportation Systems Management (TSM), bus rapid transit, light rail transit, High Occupancy Vehicle/bus lanes on Interstate 77 and widening of I-77. The City of Charlotte, Mecklenburg County and the six other municipalities in the County have developed a Countywide Transit/Land Use Plan for 2025. Transit options and possible land use actions for the North-South Corridor were analyzed. The 2025 Plan built upon earlier transit studies and land use plans for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg area. The Plan was also the basis for obtaining support for the recently approved county-wide referendum for a ½ cent sales and use tax dedicated to public transportation. The tax, which is anticipated to yield approximately $50 million during the first year, will provide local capital and operating funds to support a county-wide public transportation system. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $3.97 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Douglas Branch project is a complete reconstruction of the Douglas Branch of the Chicago Transit Authority’s (CTA) Blue Line. The line runs for six miles from a point just west of downtown Chicago to the terminus of the line at Cermak Avenue. The Douglas Branch includes 11 stations. CTA has completed the necessary planning and engineering work. The Douglas Branch was built between 1912 and 1985. The line currently carries approximately 27,000 daily riders. Because of its age, the line is seriously deteriorated and has resulted in high maintenance and operating costs. The Douglas Branch serves one of the most economically distressed areas in Chicago. Total project costs are currently estimated at $394 million. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $1.5 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this project.
The City of Chicago is proposing to design and construct the Lakefront Busway project. The proposed project consists of a two-lane, two-way bus road to shuttle McCormick Place attendees between the convention center located along the Navy Pier, and their hotels to the north. The proposed roadway, which would be separate from general traffic in and adjacent to Grant Park, is anticipated to allow faster trips to and from McCormick Place, and thereby reduce the convention center’s transportation costs, and traffic congestion in Grant Park.
The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) is proposing to lengthen existing platforms and expand stations on the existing CTA Brown Line to accommodate 8-car trains. The Brown Line runs for 9.2 miles from the north side of Chicago to the Loop elevated in downtown Chicago and includes 19 stations. Most of the Line is operated on elevated structure except for a portion near the northern end of the line, which operates at-grade. The Brown Line was built between 1900-1907. The Line currently carries approximately 104,000 daily riders. Ridership has been steadily increasing and current station and platform size prohibits CTA from increasing capacity on the line to handle increased demand. The proposed project would expand stations and platforms and straighten curves to allow CTA to operate longer trains, which would increase the capacity of the line. Selected yard improvements would also be undertaken. CTA has completed the necessary planning and engineering work. Total project costs are currently estimated at $310 million. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $1.5 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this project.
The Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA) is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to determine transportation options to provide a direct link between downtown Cleveland, Hopkins International Airport, the International Exposition Center, and Baldwin College. The proposed Berea Rapid Transit Extension, approximately three miles from the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority’s Airport station, is directly aligned with the local transit operator’s Red Line rapid rail system. The MIS is also considering adequate walk-up access and park-n-ride facilities to encourage more usage of the Red Line Light Rail Transit System (LRT). The Berea Rapid Transit Extension MIS was programmed in the NOACA FY 1997 Unified Work Program. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $2.9 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Akron, Canton, Cleveland, Ohio
The METRO Regional Transit Authority (METRO), in cooperation with local metropolitan planning organizations, regional transit authorities, and the Ohio Department of Transportation, is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to assess the costs and benefits of new passenger rail service, Transportation System Management (TSM), and/or capacity improvements for the Canton-Akron-Cleveland (CAC) Corridor. The 70-mile corridor follows a path along Interstate 77 (I-77) between Canton and Akron. Between Akron and Cleveland, the corridor widens to include both I-77 and State Route 8 (SR-8). The SR-8 alignment utilizes Interstate 271 and Interstate 480, returning to I-77 and continues into the Central Business District of Cleveland. The corridor frequently experiences traffic congestion and related safety problems on major transportation facilities. The study is currently in the primary scoping stage. The proposed project is included in the Akron Metropolitan Area Transportation Study’s Long Range Needs Plan. In addition, several miles of rail right-of-way have been purchased for passenger rail use. Federal, State and local sources have allocated nearly $15 million to the project. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $11.88 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (GCRTA) is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine transportation options in a corridor extending from the terminus of GCRTA’s Blue Line at the intersection of Van Aken Boulevard and Warrensville Road in Shaker Heights to Highland Hills. One of the alternatives under consideration is a potential extension of the Blue Line. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.8 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA), the local Metropolitan Planning Organization for the Cleveland area, is examining the feasibility of initiating commuter rail service in a proposed corridor between Cleveland and Ashtabula County. The proposed corridor is one of seven found to be feasible for commuter rail under Phase I of the Northeast Ohio Commuter Rail Feasibility Study (NEOrail) being conducted by the NOACA. Currently, no commuter rail service operates in the corridor. Prior to a decision to implement commuter rail service, NOACA will conduct Phase II of the NEOrail study. Phase II will complete the feasibility analysis, including implementing planning for all seven corridors, as input to the regional decision making process necessary to select, program and fund a proposed project.
The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (GCRTA) is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine transportation options to the North-South transportation corridor in the eastern portion of the Central Business District (CBD) in Cleveland, Ohio. One option under consideration includes providing Light Rail Transit (LRT) service to the proposed corridor. One of the alternatives under consideration includes a potential extension of the Waterfront Line LRT south from the existing North Coast terminus through the eastern portion of the CBD. Another potential alternative is Phase II of the Waterfront Line LRT. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.99 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The State of Alaska relies on ferries to connect many of the State’s coastal islands and towns. The State operates the Alaska Marine Highway, a system of 17 vessels, primarily in the Southeast portion of the State. This system has limited funding available and is unable to introduce additional, needed services or routes. In addition, there are isolated communities in the remainder of the State, which rely on access by water or air transport, as a road system is simply not developed. There are several settings where local communities are attempting to institute ferry services of their own, in light of the State’s limited resources. The City of Craig has combined with other communities on Prince of Wales Island to study the feasibility of replacing an existing ferry service operated by the Alaska Highway between the island and the City of Ketchikan with more frequent and reliable service. The proposed project has been included in the Southeast Alaska plan and was adopted in the State Transportation Improvement Program in 1998. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $6.3 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Denver Regional Council of Governments (DRCOG), in cooperation with the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and the Regional Transit District (RTD), has completed the technical work for a Major Investment Study (MIS) to evaluate transportation improvements in its East Corridor, which links downtown Denver via Interstate 70 with Denver International Airport (DIA). The East Corridor MIS was coordinated with concurrent Major Investment Studies of the region’s West and Southeast Corridors. The East Corridor MIS recommended a multimodal package of improvements in the corridor including a 23-mile single-track commuter rail line between Denver Union Station and DIA and a one-mile light rail extension from downtown to a proposed commuter rail station at East 40th Avenue and 40th Street. With the commuter and light rail improvements, DRCOG estimates an increase of 8,800 daily linked transit trips in the corridor by the year 2020. The capital cost for the commuter and light rail improvements is estimated at $330 million, with annual operating costs estimated at $31.2 million. DRCOG has officially adopted the Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) by including it in the Long Range Transportation Plan.
The Denver Regional Council of Governments (DRCOG), in cooperation with the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) and the Regional Transit District (RTD), has completed the technical work for a Major Investment Study (MIS) to evaluate improvements in the West Corridor, linking downtown Denver with the City of Golden at the intersection of US Routes 6 and 40, along West Colfax and Sixth Avenues. The West Corridor MIS was coordinated with concurrent MISs of the region’s East and Southeast Corridors. Included in the recommendations for the West Corridor is approximately 12.5 miles of light rail from Union Station to the Cold Spring Park-n-Ride, as well as some enhanced bus service. The capital cost of the recommended alternative is estimated at $251 million, with annual operating costs of $11 million. DRCOG has officially adopted the Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) by including it in the Long Range Transportation Plan. It is possible that a Minimum Operable Segment may proceed prior to the rest of the corridor. The segment would be called the Central Platte Valley Connector and would run from the Colfax Avenue station on the existing Central Corridor LRT system to the Denver Union Terminal and would serve the Auraria Campus, the Pepsi Center, Mile High Stadium and Lower Downtown Denver. Project sponsors have proposed to fund the segment with a combination of Federal, State, local and private funds.
The City of Galveston is conducting a Modified Investment Study and preliminary engineering report to determine the most suitable alignment and technology for extending the existing Galveston rail trolley system. The Galveston trolley has been operating successfully since 1985 and has been previously extended to serve the new Harborside development north of downtown. Preliminary feasibility studies have identified the potential benefits of extending the existing system to serve Galveston Island’s largest employer, the University of Texas Medical Center (UTMB) on the east of downtown, and the Island’s most important tourist destination, "Moody Gardens" on the west part of the Island. The proposed extension has been adopted as part of the Houston-Galveston area Council’s Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) and the Long Range Transportation Plan. The study is scheduled for completion in 1999. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $1.9 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The City of Hartford is proposing to study the feasibility of a connection from the Central Business District in Hartford to the "North Meadows" area in cooperation with the Greater Hartford Transit District. This is an area adjacent to the Connecticut River, along the Interstate 91 (I-91) North Corridor. The I-91 corridor has experienced a variety of development including, suburban commercial, light manufacturing, sports and a music theater. The corridor will be further defined by the study and may include some elements of downtown circulation to maximize the efficiency of the transit connection. The alternatives being considered may include light rail and bus rapid transit as well as the potential for "fringe parking." The City, the Regional Planning Agency and the Transit District are still defining the final scope of the project. This project is in the Hartford area Long Range Transportation Plan. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $1.5 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Greater Hartford Transit District (GHTD) has conducted a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine transit options within a proposed 16-mile corridor extending from downtown Hartford and several city neighborhoods to suburban towns to the north, and on to Bradley International Airport. The MIS resulted in a Light Rail Transit (LRT) option as the Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) being adopted in July 1995 by the Capitol Region Council of Governments (CRCOG) - the local Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). Since that date, the State, CRCOG, GHTD and local officials have had extensive discussions on funding sources and local financial constraint, and have determined that the LPA is not a viable alternative and are currently exploring possible additional analysis of transit mode alternatives. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.99 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Johnson County, Kansas
Johnson County, Kansas, in conjunction with the Mid America Regional Council – the local Metropolitan Planning Organization for the Kansas City region, is evaluating the feasibility of implementing commuter rail service along a proposed corridor extending from the Olathe, Kansas area to downtown Kansas City. The proposed project has been adopted in the area’s Long Range Transportation Plan. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.99 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Los Angeles, California
The Southern California Regional Rail Authority (SCRRA) is proposing a series of improvements to its commuter rail service within an existing railroad right-of-way. These improvements include the construction of sidings in the Interstate 10 Corridor, an upgrade of siding at Marengo and the double tracking of a line between the existing Pomona and Montclair stations. These improvements will result in an increase in service frequency, a reduction of commuter rail train delays, and an improvement to the schedules of counter-flow trains on the San Bernardino Line. The San Bernardino Line has the highest ridership of all Metrolink lines. There are currently 26 daily train trips in the corridor serving 8,200 daily commuter rail trips. The estimated capital cost for the proposed project is $31.4 million.
Los Angeles, California
The Southern California Regional Rail Authority (SCRRA) is proposing a series of multiple track improvements between the City of Fullerton and Los Angeles’ Union Station. The proposed project is located on the existing Metrolink Orange County Line, which is part of the Los Angeles-San Diego Rail Corridor (LOSSAN) between San Diego and Los Angeles. The proposed corridor is the second busiest in the nation. Throughout the Fullerton to Los Angeles section of the corridor, there are 21 Amtrak intercity train trips, 22 commuter rail trips and 41 freight trips. Metrolink ridership on the Orange County Line has grown to over 5,400 daily trips. Local agencies have jointly contributed over $400 million to purchase and upgrade the proposed corridor. Amtrak contributed approximately $15 million of this amount. The portion of the LOSSAN corridor from Los Angeles to San Diego is owned entirely by public agencies, except the proposed 25-mile section between downtown Los Angeles and Fullerton. The Union Station-Fullerton segment is owned by the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad (BNSF).
Los Angeles, California
The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LACMTA) is studying a section of Santa Monica Boulevard (State Route 2) between the San Diego Freeway (Interstate 405) and Moreno Drive, the boundary line between the cities of Los Angeles and Beverly Hills. The purpose of the study is to examine multimodal options in the corridor, including improved operational efficiency of the roadway, priority treatments to improve bus transit flow, a bikeway and parkway, and the preservation of the right-of-way for future rail improvements in the Santa Monica Boulevard corridor. Caltrans (California Department of Transportation) approved a Project Study Report (PSR) in October 1994. The PSR outlined a one-way couplet project concept for each direction. In January 1996, the LACMTA initiated a Major Investment Study (MIS) to refine the alternative approved in the PSR. In June 1997, LACMTA initiated preliminary engineering and environmental clearance for the project.
The Transit Authority of River City (TARC) recently completed the "Transportation Tomorrow (T-squared)" Major Investment Study (MIS) for a proposed corridor operating in an exclusive right-of-way extending south from downtown Louisville to an area just beyond the "Outer Loop," a distance of approximately 13 miles. The Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) recommended a fixed guideway rapid transit system, with an enhanced bus element. Enhanced bus service will include augmented cross-county service, which will connect riders from neighborhoods to the proposed rapid transit line. Improvements to both the existing bus service as well as the proposed bus enhancements will be considered. Preliminary capital costs estimates for the enhanced bus element are approximately $25 million. The fixed guideway portion of the LPA has not been determined. However, project sponsors have indicated the possibility of either an electrified Light Rail Transit (LRT) or Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) alternative. Buses would travel along an exclusive right-of-way in the Preston, Kentucky and Interstate 65 Corridor. Proposed station sites for the LPA are being considered at: Downtown, Medical Center, Smoketown, Shelby Park, University of Louisville (Student Center), University of Louisville (Papa John’s Stadium), Kentucky Fair and Exposition Center (Southern Heights), Louisville International Airport, United Parcel Service, Ford Motor, Inc, and at a proposed park-n-ride lot/maintenance facility to be located between the "Outer Loop" and Gene Synder Freeway. Preliminary capital cost estimates range between $300 - $450 million, dependent upon the determination of the mode and alignment for the fixed guideway portion of the LPA. The proposed project is pending inclusion in the local Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Long Range Transportation Plan.
The Miami-Dade Transit Agency (MDTA) is proposing to extend Metrorail service westward from the existing Okeechobee Metrorail Station (northern terminus) to a new station west of the Palmetto Expressway (State Route 826). The MDTA has completed the necessary planning and engineering phases and is ready to begin construction of the 1.4-mile heavy rail extension of the Metrorail system. The proposed project is anticipated to facilitate auto access for the north terminus station by its placement adjacent to the roadway facility and the construction of an over 700-vehicle at-grade parking facility. The proposed extension is projected to generate 1,900 new transit riders by 2015. Total capital costs for the proposed project are estimated at $87.8 million. The 1999 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) anticipates that the Federal Government will provide 57 percent of the total capital costs, while state and county sources are anticipated to provide 43 percent. The proposed project is scheduled for completion in December 2001.
The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) has completed a Project Development and Environmental (PD & E) Study and is in the design phase for the extension (Phase II) of the South Dade Busway, which opened in February 1997, and provides feeder services to Metrorail. The extension would be 11.7 miles from the current terminus at Southwest 112th Avenue, to Florida City along the U.S. Route 1 Corridor. The proposed project would utilize an abandoned railroad corridor for the busway facility. The project has been broken into three segments: Segment I extends from SW 112th Avenue to 264th Street; Segment II extends from SW 264th Street to SW 312th Street; and Segment III extends from SW 312th Street to 344th Street. Funding for segments I and II are included in the 1999 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) and the entire project is included in the 2015 Long Range Transportation Plan. Construction costs for the total project are estimated at $35 million. Phase I is scheduled for completion in 2003. The proposed project is being funded entirely through local sources. Various bus improvements are planned in the South Dade area to complement the proposed project, similar to the initial and presently operating South Dade Busway project. Ridership projections identify approximately 3,100 new transit trips by 2015.
Kenosha, Racine, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
The Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission (SEWRPC) – local Metropolitan Planning Organization - plans to conduct a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine the feasibility of extending Chicago-based Metra commuter rail service from Kenosha to Racine and Milwaukee. The study will focus on a proposed 33-mile corridor connecting the central business districts of Kenosha, Racine and Milwaukee in southeastern Wisconsin. SEWRPC has recently completed a feasibility study, funded entirely with local funds that concluded that the extension is feasible. The SEWRPC has adopted the project into the region’s Long Range Transportation Plan. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.496 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) has conducted a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine transportation alternatives in a proposed 9-mile corridor extending from Glendale and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, southwest through the Central Business District and the northside of Milwaukee, to the western suburbs of the city of Waukesha. The study considered a range of alternatives, including Transportation Systems Management (TSM), exclusive High Occupancy Vehicle (HOVE) lanes for buses and/or carpools, Interstate highway modernization, and light rail transit (LRT). Several combination alternatives using different technologies in different parts of the corridor were also considered. In 1991, WisDOT conducted an alternatives analysis study. In 1994, this study was converted to a MIS, which included both highway and transit elements. WisDOT selected a Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) which included improved bus transit with park-n-ride lots, LRT for Milwaukee County, the reconstruction of Interstate 94 with HOV lanes and the reconstruction of the Marquette Interchange in downtown Milwaukee. Total capital costs were estimated at $1.8 billion, with the LRT component estimated at $500 million. The Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission (local Metropolitan Planning Organization) included the East-West Corridor in its Long Range Transportation Plan. The Milwaukee County and Waukesha County Boards passed resolutions supporting the LPA. However, the resolution passed by the Waukesha County Board stated that the LRT component would not be built in Waukesha County nor funded by Waukesha County residents. In addition, $241 million in Interstate Cost Estimate (ICE) funds, which had previously been made available for transit, has since been reprogrammed to highway projects by a provision in Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21). Local and State officials continue to examine implementation and funding options, and to address the financial constraint issues.
Downtown Minneapolis-Anoka-St. Cloud, Minnesota
The Northstar Corridor Development Authority (NCDA), created by the Minnesota Department of Transportation, and acting as a joint powers board of 25 local government units with the cooperation of two metropolitan planning organizations (Metropolitan Council and the St. Cloud Area Planning Organization), is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) for a proposed 70-mile corridor between Minneapolis and St. Cloud, Minnesota. The proposed corridor includes the Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad and Trunk Highway 10. The corridor is the fastest growing corridor in the state. The MIS will evaluate a range of transportation alternatives, including the feasibility of implementing commuter rail service with appropriate land use patterns along the corridor. The study is scheduled for completion in May 1999. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.35 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota
The Ramsey County Regional Railroad Authority (RCRRA) of Hennepin County, in coordination with the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT), is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine transportation options within a proposed corridor located on the lower east side of St. Paul to downtown St. Paul. The proposed corridor also includes connections to the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, Mall of America in Bloomington - the largest retail complex in the nation, Phalen Corridor redevelopment area and the proposed Hiawatha Avenue Light Rail Transit (LRT) line. The corridor is also investigating potential connections to the Minnesota Science Museum, Ft. Snelling State Park and Ordway Theater, which combined have a total annual visitor patronage of approximately 2.7 million people. The study is considering a range of alternatives including No-build, an improved bus system, express buses operating in exclusive lanes and LRT. The study is scheduled for completion in April 2000. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $1.15 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Monterey County, California
Monterey Salinas Transit is proposing the development and extension of two commuter rail lines in Monterey County. The first component involves the extension of the Caltrain peninsula rail corridor, as a partial commuter rail train, from San Francisco to Seaside/Salinas. The proposed "Express" line would operate on an existing rail line extending south approximately 110 miles. Monterey has applied for funding as part of the $17 million California Rail Initiative, under State Proposition 116. The second component involves an extension of the Amtrak/Capitol Express to Monterey. This second component would allow Monterey County commuters to have regular access to San Francisco and Sacramento, California. It would also allow riders to access Caltrain and the Capitol Express to San Francisco and Sacramento, respectively, through transfers in the San Jose area.
Monmouth/Ocean/Middlesex, New Jersey
The New Jersey Transit Corporation (NJ Transit) is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to consider transportation improvement options between Lakewood and Newark, New Jersey. Several alignment possibilities have been examined and the options have been narrowed to diesel powered commuter rail and/or highway alignments and an enhanced bus system. NJ Transit’s Board of Directors subsequently endorsed the advancement of an enhanced bus system. However, in response to suggestions from one of the affected counties, analysis continues on potential rail options that would connect with Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor. Information on the local financial commitment, mobility improvements, cost effectiveness, environmental benefits and operating efficiencies is being developed as part of the MIS. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $7.8 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Morgantown, West Virginia
The University of West Virginia is planning an upgrade of the heating and on-board vehicle control system on the Morgantown Personal Rapid Transit (M-PRT) system. The system was originally developed as a research and demonstration project during the 1970s. The system consists of 8.2 miles of dedicated guideway with five passenger stations and a fleet of 71 fully automated vehicles. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $8.2 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Nashua, New Hampshire/Lowell, Massachusetts
The Nashua Regional Planning Commission (NRPC) and the City of Nashua are in the process of evaluating transportation alternatives for the corridor between Nashua, New Hampshire and Lowell, Massachusetts. The NRPC is establishing a Steering Committee for public participation and is developing costs and ridership projections for the alternatives. The project is presently not included in the Transportation Improvement Program/State Transportation Improvement Program, but is included in the Nashua RPC’s Long Range Transportation Plan.
The Nashville Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) and the local Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) are examining the feasibility of implementing a commuter rail system connecting the Downtown Nashville area with other areas in the Southeast Tennessee region. The Nashville Chamber of Commerce has created a task force to evaluate the prospect of commuter rail deployment. The MPO has also created a commuter rail task force. The Northeast Corridor to Hendersonville and the East Corridor to Mt. Juliet, with a spur to Opryland, have emerged in both processes as leading candidates for commuter rail. Early planning for eight intermodal commuter rail stations is beginning. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.99 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
New Jersey and Pennsylvania
The New Jersey Transit Corporation (NJ Transit) is conducting a Major Investment Study/Environmental Assessment (MIS/EA) for the restoration of passenger rail service on the former Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Main Line between Scranton, Pennsylvania and Port Morris Junction in Morris County, New Jersey. The study is scheduled for completion in December 1999. Through FY 1999, this effort has been provided $0.64 million in Section 5303 (Metropolitan Planning) and Section 5307 (Surface Transportation Policy - STP) funds.
New York, New York
The New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PORT) recently performed a series of studies examining potential routes connecting Staten Island (SI) with Downtown Brooklyn, either directly, after a stop in Manhattan, or enroute to a Midtown-Manhattan landing. Currently, there is no ferry service from Staten Island to Downtown Brooklyn. However, there is ferry service serving the Brooklyn Army Terminal Pier at 60th Street enroute from Monmouth County, New Jersey to Manhattan. In 1997, NYCDOT solicited the business community’s interest in operating these routes. The response to the request resulted in limited interest by private operators, in part due to the recent elimination of SI Ferry passenger fares, and the creation of the One City-One Fare free transfer between the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s buses and subways. NYCDOT has indicated that if a private ferry operator were to express interest, NYCDOT would consider constructing or enhancing existing docking space to support the service.
New York, New York
The Pennsylvania Station Building Redevelopment Corporation (PSRC) is proposing, as a component to the Pennsylvania Station/Farley Building Redevelopment project, a primary pedestrian connection between the existing Penn Station and the new Amtrak area in the Farley Building. The proposed project, located in the existing pedestrian passageway under 33rd Street (Midtown Manhattan) would connect Penn Station with the 8th Avenue IND Subway Station and the Long Island Rail Road West End Access. The existing passageway is currently overcrowded. The proposed project includes the widening of the passageway, reducing the grade of the ramp, improving ADA (American with Disabilities Act of 1990) accessibility, and upgrading the lighting, ventilation and life safety components. Total capital costs for the proposed connection are estimated at $10.8 million. The overall Farley Building Project is estimated at $315 million, of which $100 million is proposed for Federal funding. The 8th Avenue Subway Connection represents a portion of the $100 million Federal share. The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has been the lead agency for the Federal share. A draft Environmental Assessment has been prepared by the FRA for the entire redevelopment project, including the passageway.
New York, New York
The proposed project consists of the development of a ferry terminal on Manhattan’s West Side for a private ferry operator (New York Ferry Imperatore). The proposed terminal is located geographically on the West Side of Manhattan. However, New York Ferry’s base of operations is located across the Hudson River in New Jersey. Currently, no project sponsor has been identified. However, either New Jersey Transit or the New Jersey Department of Transportation could be a potential candidate.
New York, New York
The New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) is proposing to modernize the Saint George Ferry Terminal. The terminal is located on Staten Island and functions as a termination point for ferry service between Staten Island and Manhattan. The terminal also provides intermodal connections for commuter rail (Staten Island Rapid Transit Operating Authority - SIROTA), New York City Transit bus, vans, automobiles, bicycles and pedestrians. The facility has not undergone significant reconstruction since it was built in 1950 after a fire destroyed the original terminal. Hence, there are areas in and around the terminal that need immediate improvements. In addition, portions of the terminal have been closed to public access due to unsafe conditions. The proposed modernization and reconstruction of facilities will include new entrances, a pedestrian plaza at the concourse level, new stairs, escalators and elevators, parking facilities that conform with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), a new pedestrian walk, and intermodal improvements to the bus complex. Funding for the proposed project will come from a combination of sources including the City of New York, NYCDOT, and the State.
New York, New York
The New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) is undertaking the reconstruction of the Staten Island-Whitehall Street Ferry Intermodal Terminal. The terminal, located at the southern tip of Manhattan was mostly destroyed by fire in 1991 and ferry service has been operating out of interim facilities since then. Reconstruction of the terminal will include improved connections with the New York City Transit subway system and several bus routes. The Staten Island to New York Ferry System moves over 60,000 riders daily. A draft Environmental Assessment has been developed and is currently under review. A Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) is anticipated to be issued in the Spring of 1999. Final design and engineering are scheduled for completion shortly thereafter. The project is estimated to cost approximately $100 million. Project sponsors have informed the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) that there is a potential shortfall in local funding of approximately $30 million. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $11 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this project.
The Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District (NICTD) is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) for the West Lake Corridor to examine the southern extension of the South Shore Line commuter rail service. The proposed corridor includes approximately 4.5 miles of unused former right-of-way purchased under the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA) and jointly owned by the two towns of Munster and Hammond, Indiana and the NICTD. The right-of-way begins at Airline Junction in Munster, Indiana and ends at Dan Rabin Transit Plaza in downtown Hammond. NICTD has completed a sketch engineering study that would connect this corridor and the South Shore Line at Burnham Yards in Illinois. The proposed alignment would provide direct access via Metra’s (commuter rail division of the Regional Transportation Authority of northeastern Illinois) Electric to Randolph Street Route in Chicago. The MIS will primarily build upon an extensive study done prior to ISTEA. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $7.47 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Northern New Jersey
The New Jersey Transit Corporation (NJ Transit) has completed a Major Investment Study (MIS) resulting in a proposal to restore commuter rail service on the New York, Susquehanna and Western rail line (NYS&W) as far as Sparta, New Jersey. The service would connect to the NJ Transit Main Line at Hawthorne, New Jersey, where trains would serve the Secaucus Transfer Station and Hoboken. The proposed project would include track and signal improvements, new stations, parking facilities and equipment acquisition and rehabilitation of the Paterson, New Jersey Station on the NJ Transit Main Line. In addition, as part of the NYS&W rail line MIS, conceptual design, an environmental assessment, capital cost estimates, as well as preliminary design and engineering of the Paterson Station upgrade have been completed. Pending a Section 4(f) Report and a Section 106 Memorandum of Agreement with the New Jersey State Historical Preservation Office, the proposed Paterson Station upgrade component will be ready to proceed into final design and construction. In August 1996, a final Environmental Assessment Study was completed for the NYS&W rail line. Subsequently, in September 1996, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) issued a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI). Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $29.73 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) and the Berks Area Reading Transportation Authority (BARTA) are conducting an Alternatives Analysis Study/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (AA/DEIS) for the Schuykill Valley Corridor. The proposed corridor extends approximately 62 miles and includes the City of Philadelphia, smaller cities of Reading, Norristown, Pottstown and Phoenixville. The corridor also includes suburban centers of King of Prussia and Great Valley, as well as regional activity centers and attractions including Center City, Art Museum, Philadelphia Zoo, King of Prussia Malls, Valley Forge National Park and Reading outlets. The proposed corridor also encompasses three transit authorities: SEPTA, BARTA and Pottstown Urban Transit (PUT) and two metropolitan planning regions: Delaware Valley and Berks County. The corridor is located along existing rail freight or commuter rail right-of-way and parallels major congested expressways: the Schuykill Expressway (Interstate 76), the US 422 Expressway and US Route 202. Alternatives currently under consideration include light rail and commuter rail. Total capital costs for the alternatives are estimated between $401 million and $717 million. In addition, the Philadelphia Metropolitan Planning Organization (the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission) is considering opportunities under the Transportation and Community and System Preservation Act (TCSP) to support a proposed Philadelphia Regional Transit Oriented Development Program. The TCSP effort, coupled with the proposed Schuykill Valley corridor, is anticipated to provide opportunities for reverse commute and access to jobs activities with the areas of West Philadelphia, Norristown and Reading, Pennsylvania. Through FY 1999, Congress has provided $2.97 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for the proposed Schuykill Valley Corridor.
Pitkin County, Colorado
In 1995, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) completed a feasibility study of rail transit in the 40-mile Aspen to Glenwood Springs Corridor in the Roaring Fork Valley, about 160 miles west of Denver. The study estimated that a valley-wide rail system would cost approximately $129 million. As a result, the City of Aspen is considering a locally-funded light rail transit (LRT) line in a four-mile segment of the corridor connecting Pitkin County Airport with downtown Aspen. This segment is dependent on the outcome of a local ballot initiative that is expected in November 1999. CDOT, meanwhile, is conducting a Major Investment Study/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (MIS/DEIS) to analyze transportation alternatives, alignments, and costs in the remainder of the valley, the 35-mile corridor to Glenwood Springs. The MIS/DEIS is scheduled for completion in June 1999. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $1.9 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Pittsburgh Airborne Shuttle System is a proposal, put forth by a private sector group, to design and construct a low-speed magnetic levitation project. The study area for the proposed project is also part of the North Shore-Central Business District Major Investment Study (MIS) – see project description below. The Federal Transit Administration (FTA) has not received any definitive information on the proposed Airborne Shuttle System project.
The Port Authority of Allegheny County (PAT), in cooperation with the City of Pittsburgh and the Southwestern Pennsylvania Regional Planning Commission (SPRPC), is conducting a Major Investment Study/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (MIS/DEIS) for the North Shore-Central Business District (CBD) Corridor. The purpose of the MIS/DEIS is to assess potential improvements in the North Shore’s access to, and link with, the CBD and to enhance and support the private and public developments currently underway in the Allegheny River corridor. These developments include a new ballpark for the Pittsburgh Pirates, a new stadium for the Pittsburgh Steelers and a tripling of the size of the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. These three development projects are estimated at over $800 million. The MIS/DEIS is considering the potential option of extending the existing light rail transit (LRT) system from the CBD across the Allegheny River to the North Shore. Other improvements being considered include roads, park-and-ride improvements, enhanced transit service or Transportation System Management (TSM), pedestrian/bikeway facilities, shuttle buses, reserved bus lanes, busways, LRT and people movers. In addition, other participants in the MIS/DEIS include the Pirates, Steelers, Allegheny Conference on Community Development, Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, the Carnegie Science Center, Pittsburgh Parking Authority and the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.99 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Sacramento Regional Transit District (RT) is proposing a series of multiple improvements to the existing Light Rail Transit (LRT) corridor between downtown Sacramento and the Mather Field station, with a potential extension of LRT from the current Mather Field station to downtown Folsom. The proposed project also includes a potential extension of the LRT line in downtown Sacramento. The majority of the needed right-of-way for the proposed project has already been acquired using State and local funds. A portion of right-of-way acquisition is required in downtown Folsom. Improvements to the existing LRT system in the Folsom corridor will include double-tracking two portions of the existing line at Bee Bridge and 65th-to-Watt. These improvements will allow the RT to operate limited-stop express rail service from downtown Folsom to downtown Sacramento.
The Federal Transit Administration has not received any information on this effort.
Salt Lake City, Utah
The Wasatch Front Regional Council (WFRC) and Mountainlands Association of Governments (MAG) the two metropolitan planning organizations which oversee transportation planning for more than 85% of the State of Utah’s population, along with the Utah Transit Authority and the Utah Department of Transportation, are conducting an Alternatives Analysis (AA) Study to evaluate transportation improvements in a proposed 120-mile corridor encompassing the Salt Lake City-Ogden-Provo urbanized areas. The study will evaluate highway, bus, and rail alternatives in the proposed corridor. WFRC and MAG completed a Long Range Transit Analysis in 1996, identifying commuter rail as an effective means of serving the transportation demands in the proposed corridor between Brigham City and Payson. Project sponsors are considering the option of implementing an interim commuter rail segment from Provo to Salt Lake City to mitigate the impacts to traffic flow of the reconstruction of I-15 and for the Olympic Games. Six to seven stations are anticipated for construction. Initial discussions with Union Pacific Railroad have begun concerning acquisition of track for commuter rail and/or actual purchase of right-of-way to implement commuter rail, light rail or other transportation improvements. The September 1998 update of the region’s Long Range Transportation Plan included commuter rail service in the proposed corridor. A more detailed feasibility study of commuter rail options and costs has substantiated the recommendation of the regional transportation plan. The study is scheduled for completion in 1999. Total capital costs are estimated at $292 million. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $3.9 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
St. Louis, Missouri
The East-West Gateway Coordinating Council (EWGCC), the local Metropolitan Planning Organization, (MPO) and the Missouri Highway and Transportation Department (MoDOT) have completed a Major Investment Study (MIS) in the Cross County Corridor including St. Louis City and County. The east-west corridor connection is through Clayton, Missouri to the existing Metrolink system. The study evaluated transportation alternatives such as Light Rail Transit (LRT), busway, highway, Transportation Systems Management (TSM) and a No-Build alternative. Phase I of the MIS was completed in March 1997. A Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA), which included highway and transit improvements, was selected in September 1997. The transit component of the LPA is a 28.8-mile LRT line that extends Metrolink west in the City of St. Louis through downtown Clayton in St. Louis County, and then south from Clayton beyond the Interstate 55/Interstate 270 interchange in southeast St. Louis County and north from Clayton to beyond the Interstate 170/Interstate 270 interchange in North St. Louis County. Total estimated capital cost range from $1 billion to $1.2 billion.
San Joaquin, California
The Altamont Commuter Express (ACE) Authority is proposing a series of service improvements to the existing commuter rail line operating in the Silicon and Tri-Valley areas. ACE serves eight cities and many of the major employers in the Silicon Valley, Central Valley and Tri-Valley areas. The proposed project includes the purchase of an additional trainset and associated track improvements, which are estimated to result in an approximately 50% increase in ridership and a corresponding increase in fare revenues.
Santa Cruz, California
The Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission, in coordination with the Santa Cruz Metropolitan Transit District, is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to evaluate transportation improvements in the Watsonville to Santa Cruz Corridor. A State highway and an underutilized freight rail line run through the length of most of the corridor. The study is looking at seven different alternatives, including three fixed guideway options. The study is also considering the feasibility of initiating intercity weekend rail service between Santa Cruz and San Jose via Watsonville and Gilroy. The study is scheduled for completion in early 1999. The final project may include a combination of alternatives currently being studied.
The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT)-Marine Division is in the process of developing a 20-year plan for the current system. The plan has been carried through an extensive public involvement process and is currently being finalized. Alternatives for the system have been considered and several passenger-only ferry routes have been proposed in lieu of further expansion of the auto ferry capacity on these routes. Fiscal capacity to accomplish the $2 billion program of improvements is being considered by the Washington State legislature. Recent passage of state transportation bonding authority may enable the WSDOT to carry out several of the projects proposed in this program. The Southworth Highspeed Ferry is a component of the overall 20-year plan.
Southeast North Carolina
The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) is proposing to implement commuter rail service along the Southeast Corridor, also known as the Piedmont High-Speed Corridor (PHSC) from Washington, D.C. to Charlotte, North Carolina. The PHSC was one of five national high-speed rail corridors designated for improvements to high-speed status under the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA). The NCDOT conducted preliminary feasibility studies to examine the potential for utilizing high-speed rail along the PHSC. The section of the preferred PHSC in North Carolina is 236 miles in length and serves the urbanized corridor stretching between Raleigh, Greensboro, and Charlotte, North Carolina. The PHSC will connect with the existing high-speed service on the Northeast Corridor in Washington, D.C. North Carolina and Virginia are coordinating their efforts on the implementation of the PHSC. NCDOT will conduct an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the entire 236-mile corridor. The EIS is scheduled to begin in early 1999 with completion scheduled for 2002.
The Spokane Regional Transportation Council has conducted a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine the impacts of high capacity transportation on a proposed 16-mile corridor between the central business district of Spokane, Washington and Liberty Lake. The proposed corridor would connect major residential and employment centers within the Spokane Valley. Spokane has been classified as a "serious" nonattainment area for carbon monoxide. Trips along the corridor nearly double based on the population and employment forecasts between the years 1990 and 2020. The MIS considered three alternatives including: High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes, express busways, and Light Rail Transit (LRT). Based on the results of the MIS, LRT was selected as the preferred alternative with strong public support. The MIS was included in the region’s Long-Range Metropolitan Transportation Plan in November 1997. It is anticipated that the project sponsor(s) will complete an Environmental Assessment in early 1999 and will request to initiate Preliminary Engineering (PE) in mid 1999. The total estimated cost for the LRT, including local, State and Federal funding, ranges between $200 and $300 million. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.99 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The San Joaquin Regional Rail Commission (SJRRC), the Alameda Congestion Management Agency (ACCMA), and the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) have proposed to implement a commuter rail system along an existing Union Pacific Railroad right-of-way operating between the three counties. A Joint Powers Board (JPA) comprised of members from each of the three agencies was also created to operate the proposed Altamont Commuter Express (ACE). The SJRRC would be the managing agency for the initial 36-month term of an agreement executed between the three agencies. In addition to identifying potential sources for capital and operating funds, the member agencies will define the methods for allocating future costs and the shares of future capital improvement contributions from the member agencies.
Tampa-St. Petersburg, Florida
The Pinellas County Metropolitan Planning Organization is conducting an Alternatives Analysis (AA) study to identify transportation solutions to mobility issues in multiple corridors. The study will consider alternatives to address congestion occurring along north-south roadways in the north and central portions of the county, east-west corridors in the mid-portion of the county, north-south and east-west corridors near downtown St. Petersburg, and on corridors between Pinellas County and Hillsborough County to the east. The study is scheduled for completion in the year 2000.
Trenton-Newark, New Jersey
The New Jersey Transit Corporation (NJ Transit) conducted a study to examine the potential of restoring passenger rail service on an active freight rail line spanning central New Jersey, beginning in Ewing Township located along the Delaware River and traveling northeast to a connection with NJ Transit’s Raritan Valley Line at Bound Brook. The study, which was completed in April 1994, examined the potential station sites and western terminus options along the proposed alignment. In January 1998, NJ Transit began a feasibility assessment, which is scheduled for completion in early 1999. An Environmental Assessment will be conducted depending on the results of the current feasibility study. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $1.49 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Washington, DC Metropolitan Area
In June 1997, the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation (VDRPT) completed a Major Investment Study (MIS) which evaluated several transportation options in the Dulles Corridor. The corridor extends from the West Falls Church Metrorail Station to Dulles International Airport and continues into Loudon County. The study recommended that a 23-mile, $1.45 billion rail system be constructed to alleviate congestion and facilitate future growth in the corridor. The study also called for the development of a funding plan and the implementation of enhanced bus service. In July 1998, the Virginia Secretary of Transportation assembled the Dulles Task Force to determine the steps necessary for phased implementation of rail service along the Dulles Corridor. This includes a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system that will operate similar to a rail system with stations built in the median and access provided through pedestrian overpasses. These stations will be designed for conversion into rail stations during the next phase of the project. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $16.87 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Washington, DC Metropolitan Area
Due to increased congestion throughout the Washington, D.C. metropolitan region, the Virginia Railway Express (VRE) is proposing to expand commuter rail service to include the entire Washington, D.C.-Richmond, Virginia corridor. VRE currently operates commuter rail service between Washington, D.C. and Fredericksburg, Virginia. The Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation (VDRPT) initiated the Washington, D.C.-Richmond - Rail Corridor Study to identify specific improvements required to increase the maximum speed of passenger trains and to reduce the running time between Washington, D.C. and Richmond, Virginia, thus making it feasible for commuter rail service. The Commonwealth’s Corridor Study, completed in April 1996, recommended a six-phase rail improvement program along the existing CSX right-of-way. The improvements include, but are not limited to, straightening certain curve tracks, adding new signals, rail-crossing safety measures, constructing new track in several areas of the existing right-of-way, incrementally adding a third track, and purchasing new rolling stock and passenger facilities. To date, the Commonwealth has allocated $13 million for the initial phase of the proposed project. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $6.95 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort. In addition to the Commonwealth’s initiative, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) will soon be initiating a congressionally requested study of the Washington-Richmond corridor. The study will focus on the capital requirements needed for commuter rail service and intercity passenger rail service along the corridor. The study, developed in coordination with VDRPT and VRE and other regional transportation agencies, is scheduled for completion in early 1999.
Albuquerque, New Mexico
See project description for the Greater Albuquerque Mass Transit Project. Project sponsors have informed the Federal Transit Administration that the two are identical.
The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) is conducting a feasibility study to examine transit options in a proposed 14-mile corridor extending from the North Springs Station (currently under construction) to McGinnis Ferry Parkway along the Georgia 400 corridor. High growth in office, commercial, and residential development has occurred within the corridor with significant additional growth planned.
The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) is conducting a feasibility study to examine transit infrastructure options within the Interstate 285 Corridor extending from the existing Kensington Rail Station in DeKalb County to the Medical Center Station and Perimeter Center area. The proposed corridor is highly congested and currently carries over 170,000 daily auto trips.
The Federal Transit Administration has not received any information on this effort.
The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) is examining potential transit solutions to alleviate traffic congestion throughout South DeKalb County. The proposed area, located south of MARTA’s existing East Line is currently experiencing rapid growth in residential development. The result has been heavy traffic congestion on all major streets and highways. A portion of the proposed study area was included in the South DeKalb-Lindbergh Corridor Major Investment Study (MIS). As a result, data collected from the South DeKalb-Lindbergh MIS will be incorporated into the South DeKalb Comprehensive Transit study.
The Maryland Department of Transportation (MD DOT) is currently considering 17 transportation improvement options for the Baltimore and Washington Metropolitan Regions. The various projects under study for the region range in scope from a two-mile extension for a Baltimore-Washington International Airport Square Light Rail Transit (LRT) and a downtown Baltimore LRT "Loop" to 19 miles for a Metro (heavy rail) extension between Columbia and Silver Spring, Maryland. Total capital costs for the various options range between $120 million (downtown Baltimore Loop) to $1.9 billion (Baltimore Metro options to White Marsh Mall or Westminster).
The City of Baltimore has initiated a feasibility study to identify transportation improvements within the Baltimore Downtown area. The study area includes an east-west corridor that also encompasses the Inner Harbor. The study will examine transportation options for moving people in the downtown area to areas just east and west of the Harbor. Alternatives under consideration include, but are not limited to, a potential Light Rail Transit extension from the current Penn Station and a people mover. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.5 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Bergen County, New Jersey
The Bergen County, New Jersey, Cross County Light Rail Transit (LRT) line is one of the alternatives being considered in the West Shore Region Major Investment Study/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (MIS/DEIS) which is scheduled for completion in early 1999. The Cross County LRT is proposed to travel southeast from the Town of Maywood, New Jersey through the City of Hackensack down along the New York, Susquehanna, and Western Railroad (NYS&W) right-of-way and terminate at the Vince Lombardi park-and-ride lot, a distance of approximately seven miles. A second track and passing sidings for the LRT would be constructed in the right-of-way and would be separate from the current freight service. The potential stations include Maywood/Rochelle Park, Hackensack (Prospect Avenue), Hackensack (Main Street) and Bogota. The Vince Lombardi park-and-lot is the present terminus point for the Hudson-Bergen LRT (HBLRT). If the Cross County LRT line were selected, it would serve as an extension to the HBLRT. The HBLRT track and structures could be used for the operation of service from Hoboken to the Vince Lombardi park-and-lot in North Bergen. This would allow a one-seat ride from Hoboken to Maywood, a distance of 17 miles. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $3.97 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for the MIS/DEIS.
The Birmingham Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), in cooperation with local governments, the local transit authority, the Chamber of Commerce, and the Birmingham Regional Planning Commission, is conducting a light rail transit feasibility study as part of its Regional Multimodal Mobility and Long Range Transportation Plan. This effort constitutes Phase I of the Birmingham Transit Corridor and will result in the identification of feasible light rail alternatives with High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lane alternatives proposed within each selected corridor to determine which may be the most effective for addressing congestion management solutions. Phase I is being funded with Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Metropolitan Planing funds and local funds. Phase I is scheduled to be completed in August 1999. Phase II will consists of an Alternatives Analysis Study (AA) for the primary corridor. Phase II will evaluate the alternative alignments and technologies identified in the primary corridor in the system plan and choose a Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA). This phase will also initiate the environmental review process (National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended) – (NEPA) and include concept-level engineering and an environmental scan. Phase II is anticipated to take approximately 15 months and will be completed in November 2000. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.99 million in Section 5309 new starts funds to implement Phase II of this effort.
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine transportation alternatives to improve circumferential mass transit in a corridor surrounding the Boston central core. The proposed corridor, known as the Urban Ring and generally following a previously proposed inner belt highway alignment, includes regional trip generators, beginning at the University of Massachusetts’ Boston Campus at the southeast end and terminating at Logan International Airport at the northeast end. The corridor also includes many major public, private, and institutional activity centers located in Boston, Cambridge, Chelsea, Everett, Somerville, and Brookline. Currently, the alternatives under consideration include circumferential rail service, various combinations of rail and bus service to new station stops on the existing radial system, and enhanced bus service. These alternatives would connect with existing commuter rail and transit lines. The project is included in the "future projects" section of the Boston area Long Range Transportation Plan but is not in the financially constrained plan. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.74 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Vermont Agency of Transportation (VAOT) is planning an extension of commuter rail service on 7.8 miles of existing right-of-way between Burlington and Essex Junction. This is Phase II of the VAOT Burlington Commuter Rail effort. The proposed project will extend the Burlington to Charlotte commuter rail service from the recently renovated Union Station in Burlington to connect with Amtrak and major employment centers in Essex Junction. The Burlington to Charlotte commuter rail service is scheduled to begin operation in FY 1999. The VAOT is preparing a corridor analysis for the proposed project with $0.26 million from their $4.98 million FY 1998 earmark prior to commencing preliminary engineering, environmental, design and construction work. The improvements in the corridor would include track, tunnel, signal, at-grade crossings and drainage improvements. Two intermediate stations are also being considered along this route. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $6.96 million in Section 5309 new starts funds (including an additional $1.98 million in FY 1999) for this effort.
Charleston, South Carolina
The Charleston Area Regional Transportation Authority, in cooperation with the City of Charleston and the City of North Charleston, is examining the feasibility of implementing a proposed light rail or monobeam transit system from the Airport to the downtown Convention Center. The full-scale proposed monobeam prototype is a three-year $35-$40 million effort that is expected to be financed largely with private funds. An approximately 1.25-mile prototype will be erected on a site in Charleston to demonstrate the aesthetic, cost and environmental characteristics of the monobeam, as well as its safety and reliability. The prototype could become the first segment of a regional rail transit network. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $3.68 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Metra, the commuter rail agency for northeastern Illinois, has completed a preliminary study of a proposed commuter rail station near Comiskey Park, located within the City of Chicago. This is one of two proposed transfer stations between Metra and the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA). The Chicago Area Transportation Study (local Metropolitan Planning Organization) has recommended further study of these proposals.
Metra, the commuter rail agency for northeastern Illinois, has completed the first phase of a study examining the feasibility of implementing commuter rail service within the Chicago metropolitan area. The Chicago Area Transportation Study (local Metropolitan Planning Organization) has not included this effort in its Long Range Transportation Plan.
The Regional Transportation Authority of northeastern Illinois is conducting a feasibility study to investigate the transit and transportation needs of the Interstate 90/Northwest Tollway Corridor. The study is evaluating a range of transportation options that will result in a set of viable, cost-effective alternatives for the proposed corridor. The Northwest Corridor Transit Feasibility Study (I-90/Northwest Tollway Corridor) area is bounded by Harlem Avenue on the east, the Kane/Cook County line on the west, Metra’s (commuter rail agency for northeastern Illinois) Union Pacific Northwest Line on the north and Metra’s Milwaukee West Line on the south. A final recommendation of a set of alternatives is expected by mid-1999.
The Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA), the local Metropolitan Planning Organization for the Cleveland area, is examining the feasibility of initiating commuter rail service in a proposed corridor between Cleveland and Lorain County in northeast Ohio. The proposed corridor is one of seven found to be feasible for commuter rail under Phase I of the Northeast Ohio Commuter Rail Feasibility Study (NEOrail) being conducted by the NOACA. Currently, no commuter rail service operates in the corridor. Prior to a decision to implement commuter rail service, NOACA will conduct Phase II of the NEOrail study. Phase II will complete the feasibility analysis, including implementing planning for all seven corridors, as input to the regional decision making process necessary to select, program and fund a proposed project.
The Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA), the local Metropolitan Planning Organization for the Cleveland area, is examining the feasibility of initiating commuter rail service in the Cleveland metropolitan area. Phase I of the Northeast Ohio Rail Feasibility Study has been completed by NOACA. Seven corridors have been identified in Phase I as being potentially feasible for commuter rail service. Phase II will bring the analysis of commuter rail in northeast Ohio to a conclusion, providing regional decisionmakers with information necessary to select, program and fund potential commuter rail service. Completion of Phase II is anticipated during the year 2000.
The Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) Agency is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine transportation options in a proposed corridor extending approximately 19 miles north from the Dallas Central Business District. The proposed corridor also includes a new arena development in downtown Dallas, the Medical-Market Center, Love Field Airport, the cities of Farmers Branch and Carrollton, the Las Colinas Urban Center development, as well as developing areas northwest potentially including the Dallas-Ft. Worth International Airport. In addition, two rail lines and two major freeways are located within the corridor as alignment alternatives. The purposes of the study are to enhance mobility, provide additional capacity, reduce congestion, enhance transit, and maintain the environment. Alternatives under consideration include: No-build, Transportation System Management (TSM) including Congestion Management System applications, light rail, commuter rail, High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes and bus transit improvements. An extensive public involvement process is currently underway. The study is also being closely coordinated with two other MISs being conducted by the Texas Department of Transportation.
The Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) Agency is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine transportation options in a proposed corridor extending approximately 10 miles within the southeastern quadrant of DART’s service area. The proposed corridor also includes the Dallas Central Business District (CBD), the Medical-Market Center area, Baylor Hospital, the Deep Ellum Planned Development District, the Buckner Boulevard commercial/retail area and Fair Park. The Dallas CBD and the Medical-Market Center are outside the proposed corridor. However, they anchor one end of the southeast-northwest travel pattern of the corridor. The purposes of the MIS are to increase mobility in the corridor, add capacity along heavily traveled routes, reduce congestion and strengthen economic development. Alternatives under consideration include No-build, Transportation System Management (TSM), High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes, busway, commuter rail and light rail. Alignment alternatives to the DART-owned railroad right-of-way are also being considered. The Pleasant Grove Corridor is identified as a committed element in the region’s Long Range Transportation Plan. The MIS is scheduled for completion at the end of 1999.
The City of Dayton, in cooperation with the Miami Valley Regional Transportation Authority (Miami Valley RTA) is proposing to revitalize the area along the Miami River in downtown Dayton. The proposed riverfront corridor revitalization effort includes a landscaped walkway, a plaza for community festivals, fountains, a small boat harbor and the redevelopment of an existing street into a pedestrian way lined with trees, benches and streetlights. In accordance with this, the City of Dayton, along with the Miami Valley RTA is also proposing to relocate the existing infrastructure of an electric trolley for one of Miami Valley RTA’s electric trolley bus lines. In addition, the proposed project includes the construction of pedestrian access facilities, bus shelters, benches and signage.
The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) with the cooperation of local stakeholder agencies, are examing transportation options for the entire North Front Range, which extends 90 miles from the northern suburbs of Denver to the Wyoming border and includes the urbanized areas of Denver, Boulder, Longmont, Greeley and Fort Collins. Commuter rail is one of the alternatives being considered in the study. The North Front Range area demonstrated the highest ridership potential in a statewide commuter rail feasibility study completed in 1996. The feasibility study estimated ridership at 721,500 per year for an 85-mile Denver-Greely-Ft. Collins line and 416,200 per year for a 74-mile Denver-Boulder-Longmont-Loveland-Ft. Collins line. Both of these segments, as well as shorter lines using the same alignments, are under consideration in the current study. Phase 1 of the study was completed in 1998 and recommended more detailed consideration of commuter rail, High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes and highway improvements. Phase 2 of the study is currently underway. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.5 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
El Paso, Texas
The City of El Paso, Texas is proposing to reestablish a fixed guideway public transportation system between the City of El Paso, Texas and Cuidad, Mexico. The El Paso-Juarez region has the largest population of any international border in North America. The initial phase of the proposed international fixed guideway system involves approximately 1.6-miles of fixed guideway in downtown El Paso, Texas and an approximately 0.75-mile segment in downtown Juarez, Mexico. Until 1974, a rail trolley system linked the downtown areas of both cities. Tremendous growth and increased traffic resulting from the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) have increased traffic congestion on the region’s international bridges. Project sponsors are currently in the process of establishing an alignment, selecting the preferred technology, identifying stations and terminals, and developing an operational framework for the El Paso portion of the proposed system. The appropriate legal and international agreements will be pursued with local, State and Federal officials in Mexico to secure Mexico’s financial participation in the capital development and operation of the system. The total capital cost of the proposed project is estimated at $43.75 million.
The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (SCVTA) is examining transportation options in a proposed corridor extending approximately 21 miles between the cities of Union and Fremont, including downtown San Jose. The corridor is located primarily in the southeast portion of the San Francisco Bay Area. The corridor is predominantly traveled by residents living in the East Bay area and beyond who work in Silicon Valley. The proposed corridor is the third most congested corridor in the Bay Area. Residential development in the East Bay area has been compounded by the significant job growth in the Silicon Valley area, which has resulted in very high and increasing levels of traffic congestion. In 1994, building on several earlier planning efforts, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, in conjunction with local jurisdictions and transit agencies, conducted a study to evaluate multiple transit options in the corridor, including an option of the extension of the Bay Area Rapid Transit and SCVTA’s light rail systems. Capital costs for a potential extension ranged from $390 million - $1.14 billion, depending on preferred technology and route alignments. A longer-term rail project is included in the 1998 Regional Transportation Plan for the San Francisco Bay Area. Further analysis, regional consensus building and public involvement is needed to determine the specific technology and route alignments for a potential rail extension in the corridor.
The Cumberland-Dauphin-Harrisburg Transportation Authority (Capitol Area Transit – CAT) is conducting an Alternatives Analysis (AA) Study for a selected priority transportation corridor known as "Corridor One." The corridor was given priority status in June 1997 and extends approximately 55 miles in central Pennsylvania between Carlisle and Lancaster, via Harrisburg. The purpose of the Corridor One AA study is to provide a decision making process for determining transportation investments for the region. The AA study will reflect the policies and direction given by the Regional Growth Management Plan as developed by and for the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission. The AA study will also incorporate policies and elements of the Transportation Plan of both the Harrisburg region’s Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) and the Lancaster MPO. The proposed corridor has been endorsed by the Harrisburg Area Transportation Study (HATS) – the local MPO, as well as through local funding from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and numerous county, township and municipal contributions. The private sector has also been an active participant in this effort. The results of the CAT Regional Transit Alternatives Study and the Long Range Plan will be used to develop alternatives. The AA study is scheduled for completion in mid 1999. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.99 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Hastings-St. Paul, Minnesota
The Minnesota Department of Transportation is considering the feasibility of implementing commuter rail service along a proposed 30-mile corridor located in Washington County. The proposed corridor would connect downtown St. Paul, Minnesota with Hastings, Minnesota in Dakota County, located southeast of St. Paul. The area under consideration extends approximately 30 miles along Canadian Pacific railroad tracks. Ridership estimates vary between 933 daily passenger trips with two proposed stations over the entire 30-mile corridor to 1,179 daily trips with ten proposed stations along the entire corridor. Total capital costs for the entire corridor are estimated at $108.8 million.
The Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County (METRO) is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine advanced bus and light rail transit alternatives in the 7-mile Central Business District to (CBD) Astrodome Corridor. The proposed corridor extends south through Houston’s growing CBD, the rapidly redeveloping midtown area, and a major museum/park/zoo/university area, the Texas Medical Center and to the Astrodome event complex. The corridor experiences some of METRO’s highest ridership levels in the region. Improvements are needed to improve mobility in the corridor to serve a wide range of travel needs, including employment, school, shopping, medical, recreational and special events. METRO is seeking to develop a transit improvement that will connect significant and diverse activity centers and redevelopment within the corridor and to reinforce the transit/development linkages. The MIS was initiated in September 1998, and is scheduled to be completed in September 1999. The region’s 2020 Metropolitan Transportation Plan includes high capacity transit within the proposed corridor. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $1.49 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County (METRO) is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) focusing on Interstate 610 from the Interstate 10 interchange on the north (with connections to the Katy High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Lane and Northwest Transit Center) to the vicinity of Westpark Drive on the south. The corridor exhibits congestion as a result of high demand, limited road capacity, and difficult freeway interchanges. The focus of the study is the identification and evaluation of transit and HOV modes and strategies to serve corridor needs. METRO is working closely with the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) to ensure that any recommendation from the West Loop MIS is compatible with TxDOT’s planned maintenance improvements to the West Loop. Preliminary alternatives include a No-Build, low-cost alternative, a north-south connection alternative, diamond HOV lane, and a barrier separated HOV lane alternative. Public involvement contributed to the range of alternatives being considered in the MIS. The study is scheduled for completion in December 1999. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $1.49 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The City of Indianapolis, in cooperation with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Planning Organization, is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine the feasibility of major transit investments within the northeast portion of Marion County and the Southeast portion of Hamilton County between U.S. Route 31 and Interstate 70. The study corridor also encompasses parts of Interstate 69/State Route 37 and Interstate 465. In previous years, I-69/SR 37, as well as U.S. 31, were identified for major highway investments. Traffic congestion, along with rapid commercial and industrial development have also been increasing within the study corridor. However, as a result of including improved transit service as a potential alternative, the Hoosier Heritage Port Authority purchased the Norfolk Southern rail line extending from 10th Street in Indianapolis to Tipton, Indiana. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $1.25 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Jacksonville Transportation Authority and the Florida Department of Transportation are planning to conduct a corridor-level study for a single corridor in the Jacksonville urbanized area of Duval, Clay, and St. Johns' counties. The proposed study is a continuation of a systems planning effort known as the Jacksonville Long Range Corridor and Park and Ride Study (JLRCS) - Phase II. Phase II is scheduled to be completed in March 1999. The JLRCS will result in the selection of one corridor for study in a corridor-level analysis. The proposed study will consider all viable transportation alternatives for improving mobility in the selected corridor. The corridor-level effort will begin in April 1999 and will be based upon the Jacksonville Urban Area Transportation Study (JUATS) Update for 2020, nearing completion. The JUATS will also include a proactive, focused and citizen-led public involvement program. The corridor-level study is scheduled for completion in the year 2000.
The City of Knoxville is proposing an innovative program to incorporate multi-modal linkages among and between downtown Knoxville destinations. The Downtown Knoxville Transportation Linkages Study is examining the feasibility of connecting numerous destinations in downtown Knoxville with a fixed guideway transit system. The proposed program addresses the linkages that will connect these downtown generators with trolleys and a dedicated trolley route around downtown Knoxville, as well as bus transit, bicycle and pedestrian ways, transfer stations and intermodal parking/transit facilities. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $1.49 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Los Angeles, California
The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LACMTA) has proposed an eastern extension of the Metro Red Line from its current eastern terminus at Union Station in the City of Los Angeles. The first 3.7-mile segment, from Union Station to First and Lorena, is covered in the Full Funding Grant Agreement (FFGA) for Los Angeles MOS-3. The second segment, from First and Lorena to Atlantic and Whittier Boulevards in East Los Angeles, constituted the East Side Corridor Extension (Phase 2). The proposed 3.1-mile East Side Corridor Extension was a 3.1-mile extension, including three stations, all in subway. The project was estimated to cost $1,216 million. As a result of a November 1998 decision by the LACMTA Board, and following the review of the Draft Regional Transit Alternatives Analysis Report, the East Side Extension (Phase 2) project was suspended. LACMTA is currently examining the feasibility of implementing viable bus expansion alternatives with technological improvements such as Global Positioning System (GPS) tracking technology and automated fare collection. The LACMTA is also considering a rapid bus option with potential stops of between 1/8 (one-eighth) to one mile apart and including off vehicle fare collection, signal prioritization, stations, and the operation of articulated buses.
Los Angeles, California
The San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG) is proposing a complete reconstruction of a one-mile rail line previously purchased by the agency. The proposed rail line extends from the San Bernardino Metrolink station eastward to the site of a proposed intermodal bus terminal in downtown San Bernardino. The bus facility is currently in final design. If the proposed rail project is completed, it will allow many Metrolink trains to connect directly with the new bus facility. The proposed project will also provide for the design and construction of a signal system for the first mile. The proposed project is included in the State Transportation Improvement Plan (STIP).
Los Angeles, California
The Riverside County Transportation Commission (RCTC) is proposing to implement rail passenger service on the San Jacinto Line of the former Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe railroad. The proposed project would result in the implementation of service on the entire 38-mile line between the communities of Riverside/Highgrove and San Jacinto. RCTC plans to implement Phase I of the project, which involves railbed improvements, Metrolink connections, track and signal improvements, and station construction for the first 19 miles between Riverside/Highgrove and Perris. The capital cost for Phase I is estimated at $43 million. While the capital cost for the entire 108-mile project is estimated at $108 million. The proposed project is included in the Southern California Association of Governments’ Regional Transportation Plan. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.5 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Los Angeles, California
The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LACMTA) is studying alternatives in a proposed 17-mile corridor extending from the San Diego Freeway (Interstate 405) to the Warner Center in the West San Fernando Valley. The proposed corridor also includes the current terminus of the Los Angeles Metro Rail Red Line at North Hollywood. Alternatives under consideration include bus rapid transit, light rail transit and signal priority technology.
The Maine Department of Transportation (MEDOT) has conducted a Marine Highway Waterfront Assessment to study infrastructure needs to support highspeed ferry service connecting Maine’s coastal communities. This effort supports the MEDOT’s Strategic Passenger Transportation Plan and is in MEDOT’s Twenty and Six-Year Plans and will be included in the State Transportation Plan (STIP), if funded. The Marine Highway Waterfront Assessment identified locations in Portland, Bath, Boothbay Harbor, Rockland and Bar Harbor for ferry infrastructure development. The Marine Highway will link Portland to Bar Harbor, a distance of approximately 72 nautical miles and will provide an alternative for travelers on the congested Interstate 95/Route 1 corridor. The MEDOT estimates ridership for the marine network to be 87,000 a year (May to October). The proposed project is estimated to cost a total of $12.5 million, of which MEDOT is anticipating $10 million in Federal funds.
Sonoma and Marin Counties are exploring the possibility of implementing passenger rail service along an existing rail right-of-way. Some initial planning studies have been conducted, however, this effort has not yet entered into the alternatives analysis stage of planning. Currently, the Sonoma/Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART) Planning Group is considering the level at which the planning for this effort should proceed. Local funding is available for some initial planning work. However, the necessary funding for construction and operation of a potential rail line is currently not available. A local sales tax measure with the potential to fund a proposed project did not pass a November 1998 referendum.
The Memphis Area Transit Authority (MATA) has completed a Long Range Plan which includes Light Rail Transit (LRT) in three proposed corridors by the year 2020. The plan has been adopted by the local Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). The first proposed corridor selected for more detailed analysis is the East Corridor extending a distance of approximately 24.8 miles, and encompassing Downtown, Midtown, East Memphis, Germantown, and Collierville. Total capital cost for the East Corridor is estimated at $443 million. Daily ridership for the East Corridor is anticipated to be 34,300 by the forecast year 2020. The North Corridor constitutes the second proposed corridor and extends a distance of 17.6 miles and includes Downtown, North Memphis, Frayser, and Millington. Total capital costs for the North Corridor are estimated at $304 million. Daily ridership for the North Corridor is estimated to be 6,900 in the year 2020. The South Corridor, extending a distance of approximately 19 miles, constitutes the third corridor proposed for detailed analysis. The South Corridor includes Downtown, South Memphis, Whitehaven, Southhaven, and a spur to the Airport. Total capital costs for the South Corridor are estimated at $330 million. Daily ridership is anticipated to be 21,200 by the year 2020.
The Miami-Dade Transit Agency (MDTA), in cooperation with the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), is conducting an Alternatives Analysis Study (AA) to examine mobility improvements in the Kendall corridor to the Miami International Airport (MIA). The corridor would serve as a feeder to Metrorail and the proposed Miami Intermodal Center. The corridor spans approximately 15 miles with both east-west and north-south segments. The Kendall segment, from Southwest 147th Avenue to the Dadeland area, is centered along Southwest 88th Street or North Kendall Drive. The Palmetto/Airport segment, from the Dadeland area to the MIA, is centered along the Palmetto Expressway (State Route 826) corridor. Major generators along the study area include the MIA, Mall of Americas, Downtown Dadeland, Baptist Hospital and Miami-Dade Community College (Kendall Campus). The Kendall-Airport MIS commenced in July 1998 and is scheduled for completion during the summer of 1999. The study follows Miami-Dade’s 2015 Long Range Transportation Plan, which identified the Kendall and Palmetto corridors as requiring premium transit treatment. Several prior studies have examined the feasibility of transitways in the study area and concluded that transitways were viable options. The Kendall–Airport MIS is being funded locally by the FDOT, and managed by the MDTA.
The Miami-Dade Transit Agency (MDTA) is planning to conduct an Alternatives Analysis (AA) study for the area’s Northeast Corridor. The proposed corridor extends approximately 13.6 miles from Miami’s Central Business District to the Broward County line, serving the cities of Miami, Miami Shores, North Miami, North Miami Beach and Aventura. The Northeast Corridor AA will examine mobility enhancements generally along the Biscayne Boulevard alignment that includes a parallel railroad corridor. Transitway technologies that will be studied include both busway and rail options. The corridor was identified in the Miami-Dade’s 2015 Long Range Transportation Plan as requiring premium transit improvements. It also has been studied as part of the Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Miami-Dade Transit Corridors Transitional Analyses (1993), which concluded that the proposed corridor was viable for a transitway.
Nassau County, New York
An Alternatives Analysis (AA) is proposed by Nassau County, New York to examine transportation improvements within this 1.5 by 2-mile corridor area. The study will consider a range of alternatives, including light rail transit, a fixed guideway loop, and shuttle buses, that would connect existing facilities and new infill development into a pedestrian/transit-friendly environment. Potential circulator transit service would also connect with a LIRR commuter rail station. The primary site of the Hub will be located in the center of Nassau County, Long Island, New York, on the Mitchell Field (a former Air Force base), which has become an extensive mixed-use development. It already has major activity centers, including retail, office, recreation, college, museums and a sports arena. Nassau County will seek assistance from the New York Metropolitan Transportation Council (local Metropolitan Planning Organization), the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) and Long Island Bus, along with the local business and development community. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.5 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Newburgh, New York
The City of Newburgh is planning to intiate a feasibility study for a proposed Light Rail Transit (LRT) system linking its Hudson River waterfront to Stewart International Airport. There is currently no public transportation between the two sites. The proposed LRT corridor would run along Broadway (Route 17K) connecting Newburgh’s waterfront, historic district and downtown commercial area with the Airport and the surrounding industrial facilities, a distance of approximately four (4) miles. A segment of the proposed corridor passes through the City’s federally designated Enterprise Community area. It would also serve a major portion of Newburgh’s New York State Economic Development Zone (EDZ). The proposed LRT is anticipated to boost tourism in the City by creating a unique and direct link between its historic/waterfront area and the region’s major entry point for outside visitors. In addition, it would provide job access to the Stewart vicinity industrial sites for Newburgh’s underutilized work force. The feasibility study is anticipated to take approximately 12 months to complete, and include consultation with the Town of Newburgh, State of New York Department of Transportation, Stewart Airport Commission, and the Newburgh EDZ. It would also include consideration of alternative transportation systems.
New Orleans, Louisiana
The Regional Planning Commission (local Metropolitan Planning Organization) has conducted a Major Investment Study (MIS) for an approximately 15-mile corridor extending from Interstate 310 and the New Orleans International Airport to Downtown New Orleans and the Union Passenger Terminal on the East Bank of the Mississippi River. The corridor also covers the Jefferson, St. Bernard, St. Tammany and Plaquemines Parishes area. The proposed corridor is also 2-3 miles wide between Jefferson Highway (US 90) and West Napoleon Avenue. The proposed corridor will also serve a variety of major trip generators including the Elmwood Office and Industrial Park and Zephyrs’ Baseball Stadium. Some of the alternatives that were considered in the MIS included: No-build, Transportation System Management (TSM), an extension of Earhart Boulevard, fixed guideway, busway, a combination alternative, and a widening of US 61. The MPO has selected a Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA), which consists of both a fixed guideway element and an extension of Earhart Boulevard. Estimated costs for the LPA range between $140 million to $500 million.
New Orleans, Louisiana
The Regional Transit Authority (RTA) is conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to evaluate transportation improvements in the Desire Corridor, defined as the area bound by Canal Street, N. Rampart Street/St. Claude Avenue the Industrial Canal, and the Mississippi River. The proposed corridor which is approximately one-half mile wide and three miles long, contains densely developed residential areas, including the French Quarter, Fauburg Marigny and Bywater. These neighborhoods are on the National Register of Historic Places. The proposed corridor also contains major trip generators including the F. Edward Hebert Defense Complex (home to the Navy Support Activity Center and Military Traffic Management Command), the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts (currently under construction) and numerous other schools. It is also adjacent to the Louis Armstrong Park, which includes the Municipal Auditorium and the Mahalia Jackson Theater for the Performing Arts, and the St. Claude Medical Center. Ten transit lines currently serve the corridor. The lines have a total ridership of 40,000 passengers. Fifty percent of these passengers currently board within the proposed corridor. Alternatives under consideration include No-build, enhanced bus/Transportation Systems Management (TSM), busway/High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes and streetcar. The study is scheduled for completion in June 1999. The proposed corridor is also included in the Regional Planning Commission’s (local Metropolitan Planning Organization) Long Range Plan and Transportation Improvement Program. It is also included in the State Transportation Improvement Program. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $3.88 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
New York, New York
The proposed project involves the construction of a new extension of the New York City Subway System into LaGuardia Airport, located in the Borough of Queens. Currently, a project sponsor has not been identified. However, the Astoria-East Elmhurst Extension is similar to the LaGuardia Airport Subway Access/Alternatives Analysis/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (LASA-AA/DEIS). The New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority, in conjunction with the Federal Transit Administration and the Federal Aviation Administration is conducting the LASA-AA/DEIS. The purpose of the LASA-AA/DEIS is to examine options to provide convenient and cost-effective subway service from Lower Manhattan to LaGuardia Airport. In addition, the study is considering the extension of the existing BMT Astoria (N) Line from its current terminus at Ditmars Boulevard in Queens, east to the LaGuardia Airport Terminal. The study is being financed with local sources.
New York, New York
See project description for the Brooklyn-Manhattan Access project below. Project sponsors have informed the Federal Transit Administration that the two are identical.
New York, New York
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) and New York City Transit (NYCT) have completed a Major Investment Study to examine the preliminary operating and engineering options for improving the capacity and flexibility of subway services crossing the East River. The distribution among the subway lines crossing the East River is uneven and some crossings are congested while others have unused capacity. One of the major goals of the study was to provide alternatives to current NYCT subway service over the aging Williamsburg and Manhattan bridges. The MIS reviewed approximately 68 strategies and ultimately recommended Manhattan Bridge Alternative 5 (MBA 5) as the preferred alternative to be advanced for further analysis. The full MBA5 Alternative has an estimated capital cost of approximately $600 million, and an estimated operating cost of $0.4 million. The MBA5 Alternative is comprised of five components. These include: Rutgers Street Tunnel-DeKalb Avenue Track Connection; Lawrence Street-Metro Tech to Jay Street Transfer; Broadway-Lafayette and Bleecker Street Transfer; Revise Existing Service Pattern on the D/Q/N lines; and lengthen the No. 3 line trains. The MBA5 Alternative also recommended adding approximately 12 additional passenger trains per hour. These components are important to NYCT system improvements. However, the Rutgers Street-DeKalb Avenue Track Connection provides the major benefits of the MBA5 Alternative and its ability to provide critically needed system flexibility and additional capacity. In addition, it should be noted that while the study has been completed and a recommended alternative identified, the MTA/NYCT is focusing on the engineering of the Broadway-Bleecker Street and Jay Street transfers as distinct components. These activities have been programmed into the MTA’s FY 2000 Capital Program.
New York, New York
The New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) is conducting a Major Investment Study/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (MIS/DEIS) to evaluate new transit services to Lower Manhattan from three commuter rail terminals: Grand Central Terminal in Midtown Manhattan, Penn Station on the West Side of Manhattan, and Flatbush Terminal in Brooklyn. The rebound of businesses in Lower Manhattan from the economic recession in the early 1990s has lagged behind the rest of the island and office vacancy rates remain high. Contributing factors include: the age of the buildings, most of which are more than 50 years old and lack power and ductwork for modern office systems; and the lack of direct access to commuter rail services requiring workers to travel on congested rapid transit lines at least fifteen minutes from the commuter rail terminals to reach their offices. The preliminary alternatives being considered include Transportation System Management (TSM); rail shuttle service; new subway service; and extension of current commuter rail services. No federal funds are involved in the MIS/DEIS.
New York, New York
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) and New York City Transit (NYCT) are completing a Major Investment Study/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (MIS/DEIS) for the Manhattan East Side Alternative Access (MESA). The study is examining options to improve the mobility in the north-south corridor of Manhattan’s East Side from South Ferry to approximately 125th Street with potential connections in the Bronx. The East Side of Manhattan has only one rapid transit line (Lexington Avenue). In 1995, the line experienced significant overcrowding during peak periods, carrying approximately 288,000 inbound daily passenger trips on East 60th Street. Also, there is limited additional street capacity to expand bus service. The study has been refined and includes two build alternatives: Transportation System Management (TSM) and a No-build. The first build alternative (Second Avenue Subway) would provide express subway service on the existing Broadway line north from one of three termini (lower level of City Hall Station, Whitehall Street Station, or the 95th Street Station in Brooklyn) to 63rd Street. From there, the alignment would join a new subway line extending northward beneath Second Avenue to approximately 115th Street. From there it would transition via a curved tunnel alignment to a location adjacent to the east side of the 125th Street Station on the Lexington Avenue line. This alternative would include approximately 15 stations, of which five would be new stations. The estimated cost of the first build alternative is $3.5 billion. The second build alternative (Subway with Light Rail on Lower East Side) would contain all of the elements of the first build alternative, but would add light rail transit (LRT) to serve the Lower East Side and Lower Manhattan. The proposed two-way LRT would begin near the intersection of Water and Broad Streets, proceed along Water and Pearl Street to Frankford Street, where it would descend into a new tunnel to the Chambers Street/Brooklyn Bridge Station. From there it would continue in an existing tunnel to Ludlow Street where it would surface and travel along East Broadway to Grand Kazan to Columbia and extend across 14th Street between Avenue D and Union Square. The LRT would serve 11 new stations between Water Street and Union Square on 14th Street. The total estimated capital cost for the LRT element of the second build alternative is $700 million. It should be noted that this cost estimate is preliminary and will require further refinement as the project development process progresses. The New York Metropolitan Council (NYMTC) (local Metropolitan Planning Organization), has included the development of the MESA MIS/DEIS in its Long Range Transportation Plan. The study is scheduled for completion in early 1999.
New York, New York
The Rehabilitation of the North Shore Railroad Line project involves conducting an Alternatives Analysis/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (AA/DEIS) to examine the feasibility of re-establishing passenger rail service along the North Shore Rail line located on Staten Island, New York. Originally, the line went from Cranford, New Jersey to the St. George Ferry terminal on Staten Island. The current project only considers the section between the Arlington Rail Yards and St. George, Staten Island, a distance of approximately 5.2 miles. This effort is part of a larger project to improve intermodal connections between New York and New Jersey to transport freight from ocean-going ships and trucks as well as passengers to a new industrial work site, the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island. This project is also expected to stimulate economic development on Staten Island. The study will evaluate a range of alternatives including No-build, bus rapid transit, commuter rail and diesel multiple unit technology. Phases 1 and 2 of the rehabilitation project have been completed. Phase 3 consists of revitalizing the remaining portion of the rail corridor for passenger service and implementing the AA/DEIS study. Currently, the project is not in the Transportation Improvement Program/State Transportation Improvement Program. However, the North Shore Railroad Line project is part of the Corridor Level Options discussion in the draft Regional Transportation Plan for the New York City urbanized area.
New York, New York
The proposed project involves the construction of a Light Rail Transit (LRT) line along the Long Island City (LIC) waterfront. The proposed LRT would connect the new Queens West development, currently under construction along the waterfront, with subway stations that are a substantial distance inland. The Queens West development is a large, residential and commercial project sponsored, in part, by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and the Empire State Development Corporation. The developer is also interested in enhancing existing New York City Transit (NYCT) bus service, possibly with improved bus stop signage, shelters and maps. A local Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) was developed and included analysis of an enhanced bus shuttle to the subway stations. The LRT was not proposed as part of the EIS. Presently, a project sponsor has not been identified. However, several years ago the New York City, Queens Borough President’s Office made a similar proposal for a LRT along the LIC waterfront.
New York, New York
See project description for the Manhattan East Side Access. Project sponsors have informed the Federal Transit Administration that the two are identical.
New York/New Jersey Metropolitan Area
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, along with the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority and New Jersey Transit (NJ Transit) are conducting a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine the feasibility of establishing new transportation links from Westchester and Western Queens, New York through Midtown Manhattan to Northern New Jersey. This effort is know locally as the Access to the Region’s Core (ARC) study. A draft Milestone Summary Report identified as the most promising alternative a commuter rail solution involving all three of the region’s commuter railroads – NJ Transit, the Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North, which will allow all three railroads to gain access to New York's Penn Station and Grand Central Terminal. The alternative involves a new commuter rail tunnel under the Hudson River to an expanded Penn Station with a tunnel extension to Grand Central Terminal. Accordingly, project sponsors have indicated a need to proceed with more detailed analysis of this alternative as well as possible variants in order to reconsider the proposed Manhattan alignment between Penn Station and Grand Central Terminal, with an investigation of potential freight opportunities. There is also a need to identify capacity expansion strategies at Penn Station New York in the near term. A scope of work for Phase 3 of the study is being drafted.
Northern New Jersey
In 1995, Union County, along with New Jersey Transit (NJ Transit) initiated a study to determine the potential for establishing a new train station and for fostering development in the Townley section of the Township of Union, New Jersey. The proposed project is located at Morris Avenue on NJ Transit’s Raritan Valley Line. The project consists of a bridge for the railroad tracks at Morris Avenue, realignment of existing railroad tracks and all signal and communications; installation of gauntlet tracks; construction of a rail station structure of approximately 3,000 feet; construction of a center island high-level platform; installation of vertical accessibility elements; construction of a pedestrian passageway under the tracks; construction of a commuter parking lot for 484 vehicles; installation of closed circuit security television and the installation of signage, among other commuter amenities. The proposed project is currently in the preliminary design and engineering phase. An Environmental Assessment is under review.
The Bay Area Rapid Transit District (BART) and the Port of Oakland are proposing a 3.2-mile transit link between a planned new passenger terminal at the Oakland International Airport and the Coliseum BART station. The proposed Airport Connector project will generally follow a route along Hegenberger Road from the BART Coliseum station to the Airport. Project sponsors are studying the feasibility of implementing automated guideway transit (AGT), bus transit on an elevated guideway, and enhanced surface bus transit. Existing bus service takes almost 30 minutes for a three-mile peak period trip. BART anticipates that a potential grade separated transit system would reduce travel time to approximately seven minutes. Planning for the proposed project has been included in the Regional Transportation Plan and State Transportation Improvement Program. Capital funding for the Connector was a priority in a narrowly defeated county-wide ballot initiative in 1997 which would have provided approximately $66 million in sales tax revenue for the estimated $130 million project.
The Federal Transit Administration has not received any information on this effort.
The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) is completing a Major Investment Study/Draft Environmental Impact Statement (MIS/DEIS) along a proposed 60-mile suburban corridor in a southwest to northeast direction, from Glenloch in Chester County, through Norristown in Montgomery County and terminating in Morrisville, Bucks County. The proposed corridor, almost all of which is located along an existing rail freight right-of-way, is roughly parallel to the US Route 202 Expressway and the Pennsylvania Turnpike. A final draft of the MIS/DEIS is currently circulating. The Locally Preferred Alternative (LPA) has been identified as electrically powered light rail, to be built in two phases. The first phase would include light rail from Glenloch to Norristown via King of Prussia, coupled with express bus service from King of Prussia to Oxford Valley via the Pennsylvania Turnpike. The second phase would extend the proposed light rail system from Norristown to Morrisville. Total capital costs for the first phase are estimated at $396 million. Total capital costs for the entire corridor, including both the first and second phases, are estimated at $742 million. Total daily ridership for the first phase is anticipated at 8,500. Ridership for the entire corridor is estimated at 14,700. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $2.19 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Federal Transit Administration has not received any information on this effort.
Providence-Pawtucket, Rhode Island
The Rhode Island Department of Transportation and the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority are in the process of defining the project. Currently, definitive information on a proposed project is not available.
Riverside County, California
See project description for the Los Angeles, California – Riverside-Perris Rail Passenger Service. Project sponsors have informed the Federal Transit Administration that the two are identical.
Salt Lake City, Utah
The Utah Transit Authority (UTA) is conducting a feasibility study to examine the option of extending the North/South Light Rail Transit (LRT) line (currently under construction), approximately seven miles to the suburban communities of Draper and Sandy, Utah. The proposed project would be constructed on an extension of the existing railroad right-of-way owned by UTA and being developed for the North/South LRT. The proposed Draper extension would have six stations complete with park-and-ride lots and bus transfer facilities. The total capital costs for the proposed Draper Extension are estimated at $156.3 million.
Salt Lake City, Utah
The Utah Transit Authority (UTA) is conducting a feasibility study to examine the option of extending the North/South Light Rail Transit (LRT) line (currently under construction) approximately seven miles through the City of Midvale to the City of West Jordan. It would be constructed at-grade and would have five stations with bus transfer facilities and park-and-ride lots. Total capital costs for the proposed West Jordan extension are estimated at $187.5 million.
San Francisco-San Jose, California
The Council of San Benito County Governments is proposing an extension of Caltrain service approximately 13 miles south from the current terminus in Gilroy, along an existing rail line, to the City of Hollister located in the southeast portion of the San Francisco Bay Region. Hollister is the population center for San Benito County, the fasted growing county in California over the past five years. Hollister has grown in response to the increasing demand for affordable housing for Silicon Valley workers. Further planning, regional consensus building, and public involvement are needed to determine the specific technology and frequency of rail service for the proposed corridor. Total capital costs for upgrading the existing freight rail line is estimated at $15 million.
Santa Fe, New Mexico
The City of Santa Fe, in cooperation with the Santa Fe Southern Railway, Santa Fe County, the New Mexico State Highway and Transportation Department is proposing to develop commuter rail service along an existing 13-mile rail line between El Dorado and Santa Fe. The proposed project was identified in the local Metropolitan Planning Organization’s Long Range Transportation Plan and the City’s proposed General Plan. The proposed undertaking resulted from a commuter rail demonstration project that established the need for providing public transportation services in the Santa Fe/El Dorado Corridor. Project sponsors anticipate that the proposed project will provide connections between Santa Fe and El Dorado to major employment centers in both cities, thereby removing automobile traffic from a highly congested roadway network. In addition, the proposed project is expected to meet the long range regional planning goals of reducing sprawl and concentrating future growth in areas that will be serviceable by existing infrastructure. The proposed Santa Fe/El Dorado Rail Link is included in the region’s Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) and is anticipated to be included in the State TIP. Total capital costs for the proposed project are estimated at $10 million.
Lackawanna County is proposing the restoration of historic trolley passenger service on an old interurban trolley line between Scranton and Wilkes-Barre with major destination points at Montage, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport and Wilkes-Barre, a total distance of approximately 16 miles. The proposed corridor is located along a right-of-way (ROW) that largely parallels Interstate 81 from Scranton to the vicinity of the Airport. Luzerne County owns approximately 11 miles of the ROW. Lackawanna County is negotiating with the owner of the ROW for the acquisition of 3-4 miles of ROW not currently under public ownership. Currently, there is light, but active freight service along most of the route. Lackawanna County is in the process of opening bids on the first phase of re-electrification on the first portion of the line. This work is being funded by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), which also provided support for the assessment of service restoration feasibility and requirements, including the necessary engineering.
The City of SeaTac, Washington in cooperation with other local agencies, has conducted a Major Investment Study (MIS) to examine the options to improve the mobility of the City’s commercial core which includes the activity centers located around the International Boulevard area and the City of SeaTac International Airport. The MIS, completed in July 1997, resulted in a Locally Preferred Transportation Strategy recommending a Personal Rapid Transit (PRT) System. The total estimated capital cost for Phase I of the PRT system is $307.5 million. Phase I of the proposed project includes the acquisition of 210 PRT vehicles, operating along 12.1 miles of "one-way" guideway and serving a forecasted ridership of 24,000 patrons, utilizing 21 PRT stations. The City of SeaTac has incorporated the proposed PRT system into its Municipal Comprehensive and Transportation Plans. The City is also proposing that the project be included in the Regional Plan for Seattle. Since the primary beneficiaries of the proposed PRT system are local businesses, a "Partnership Franchise" between the public and private entities was recommended as part of the implementation approach. The proposed project is included in the Puget Sound Regional Council’s Long Range Transportation Plan. Through FY 1999, Congress has provided $0.6 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Sioux City, Iowa
The City of Sioux is examining the feasibility of implementing a Micro Rail Trolley system in an as yet undefined corridor that could potentially include the city’s downtown Central Business District. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.25 million in Section 5309 new starts for this effort.
In September 1996, the cities of Newport News, Williamsburg and Hampton initiated a Major Investment Study (MIS) on a proposed 32-mile corridor along the CSX rail right-of-way. The Hampton Roads Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) identified the CSX Corridor, from Williamsburg to Newport News, as a priority transportation corridor for providing long range transportation alternatives to widening existing roadways. The Hampton Roads MPO determined that a MIS was needed to establish feasible alternatives leading to the development of a multimodal transportation system on the Virginia Peninsula. The CSX Corridor MIS evaluated six alternatives, ranging from the No-build to a fully automated fixed guideway system. The MIS, completed in December 1997, recommended Light Rail Transit (LRT) as the locally preferred alternative. The MIS also recommended a number of steps that would both prepare for the eventual introduction of LRT and immediately improve the current public transit system on the Peninsula. This included providing an enhanced bus system, developing transit-supportive land use, and protecting future right-of-way along the CSX Corridor, supporting regional transit initiatives, and developing a stronger funding base for transit in the Hampton Roads area. The Peninsula Transportation District Commission, in cooperation with local and state officials, is currently developing a plan to implement the recommendations of the MIS.
The Toledo Metropolitan Area Council of Governments (TMACOG) is planning to conduct an Alternatives Analysis (AA) study to examine transportation options in an approximately four-mile proposed corridor in Toledo. The study will examine the potential of a fixed guideway circulator in downtown Toledo to connect major activity centers including the Toledo convention center, science museum and Amtrak rail station. The study will also examine the potential of fixed guideway transit in radial corridors leading from downtown Toledo to the Toledo Zoo and Toledo art museum, which would connect with the downtown circulator. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.99 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Area
The Federal Transit Administration has not received any information on this effort.
Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Area
The Maryland Mass Transit Administration (MTA) is currently conducting the Maryland Route 5/Waldorf Corridor study. The study is one of several recommendations resulting from the US 301 South Corridor Transportation Study, a Major Investment Study (MIS) that was completed in 1996. The study corridor extends approximately 19.5 miles from inside the Capital Beltway in Prince George’s County, Maryland along Maryland Route 5 and continues along US 301 and the Pope’s Creek Branch freight rail line to White Plains in Charles County, Maryland. The alignment connects to the Washington Metrorail system at the Branch Avenue Metrorail Station, which is currently under construction. The purpose of the study is to identify a future light rail transit (LRT) alignment, station sites, and a maintenance yard, which can be reserved for development of an LRT system. Information on the environmental features, roadway improvements and utilities has been collected. Preliminary corridor ridership is projected at 25,000 total daily trips for the year 2020, based on the US 301 South Corridor Transportation Study. The proposed LRT is anticipated to provide access to jobs in downtown Washington, D.C., and its surrounding suburban areas by connecting to the regional Metrorail system.
Albuquerque, New Mexico
The City of Albuquerque in coordination with the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, and the State Historic Preservation Officer of New Mexico is constructing an intermodal transfer facility to serve the city’s downtown core. This project will include a bus transfer site, and will also include retail and office space, bus circulation elements, taxi, a downtown bus circulator a passenger plaza for transit patrons, and a surface parking lot. The project will also serve to revitalize the area and create a positive atmosphere and a safe and clean environment for visitors and citizens. The facility is envisioned as a transportation hub for the metropolitan area and will also serve as a site for the current Amtrak rail service, intercity transport services and future modes of urban and regional rail services. The primary design concept behind the proposed project is to make the facility work as a transportation center and to further design the facility to include transit-oriented development, which will incorporate other transit-related amenities so that the facility becomes a major activity center within the Central Business District (CBD). The construction of the Alvarado intermodal facility is a key component in the City’s plan to achieve and maintain National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). The project is scheduled to begin construction in the Spring of 1999. The proposed project is scheduled for completion in the year 2000.
The proposed project involves the construction of an Intermodal Transportation Center in downtown Bridgeport. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $6.5 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The proposed project involves the reconstruction of the existing rail line between Old Saybrook and Hartford. Future passenger uses, however, remain uncertain. The line is currently inactive except for a short tourist operation near Old Saybrook. No planning efforts have been undertaken for this effort and it is not included in Hartford’s Long Range Plan. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.49 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
New London, Connecticut
Currently, there is no defined waterfront access mass transit project in the City of New London. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.49 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.
The Federal Transit Administration has not received any information on this effort.
Currently, there is no defined new start intermodal mass transit project in Rhode Island. The Rhode Island Department of Transportation and the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority are in the process of defining the project and justifying its new start eligibility.
The Stamford Fixed Guideway Corridor Project involves the reconstruction of roadways to improve access to the Stamford Transportation Center, which is currently being rehabilitated to accommodate high speed rail service and to provide additional commuter parking. A Brownfields area is adjacent to the Center. The specific roadway components include the Dock Street Connector, the Market Street Extension and the Jefferson Street reconstruction. The Connecticut Department of Transportation, the Southwestern Regional Planning Agency, the Metropolitan Planning Organization, and the City of Stamford have coordinated the development of the proposed project. The project is identified in the Long Range Transportation Plan. Through FY 1999, Congress has appropriated $0.99 million in Section 5309 new starts funds for this effort.