Invitation Letter to 11th Annual SSO Program Meeting in Minneapolis, MN on September 17 to 20, 2007

Printer Friendly Number 2007-53

June 26, 2007


Mass Mailout Number III-2007-53


Subject:  Invitation Letter to 11th Annual SSO Program Meeting in Minneapolis, MN on September 17 to 20, 2007


Dear Transit Colleague:


FTA's Office of Safety and Security, in partnership with the Minnesota Department of Public of Safety and Metro Transit, is pleased to invite you to attend the 11th Annual State Safety Oversight (SSO) Program Meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  This meeting is being held between Monday morning, September 17, 2007 and noon on Thursday afternoon, September 20, 2007.


Please find the Invitation Letter that is attached to this email.




The 11th Annual SSO Program Meeting will be held at:

Millennium Hotel Minneapolis:

1313 Nicollet Mall

Minneapolis, MN 55403


Hotel rooms are available at the government rate of $113 per night.  The hotel is situated in downtown Minneapolis, near the tree-lined Nicollet Mall, the Minneapolis Convention Center, fine shopping, the Target Center and Metrodome, and a number of theaters and museums.


You may arrange your accommodations by phone or on-line.  To make reservations by phone, please call the hotel directly at (800)-522-8856 or (612) 332-6000 and mention that you are part of the "FTA SSO Annual Meeting."


To make reservations on-line, please click on the hotel’s reservation URL and follow the instructions on the website:  (


Rooms must be held with a credit card and there is a 72 hour cancellation policy.  Due to the hotel’s policy, all rooms must be reserved by August 24, 2007.  In making your reservation, you will be considered registered for the 11th Annual SSO Program Meeting.


The hotel is located about seven blocks from the Metro Transit 5th & Nicollet Mall light rail stop.  The train fare is $1.50 from the Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport (MSP).  Metro Transit Bus also provides dedicated service on the Nicollet Mall that will bring you right in front of the hotel (Route 11 – get off at the 12th and Nicollet stop).


The hotel is about a 25 minute cab ride from MSP.  Cab rides typically cost about $30.  In addition, there is Super Shuttle that leaves MSP every 30 minutes.  Advanced reservations are highly recommended, and can be made by calling (612) 827-7777 or 1-800-BLUEVAN or on-line at


Car rentals can be made at the airport from:

Alamo:  1-800-327-9633

Avis:  1-800-831-2847

Budget:  1-800-527-0700

Dollar:  1-800-800-4000

Enterprise:  1-800-325-8007

Hertz:  1-800-654-3131

National:  1-800-227-7368


If you have any questions or concerns regarding your attendance or hotel reservation, please do not hesitate to contact Ms. Jennifer Grant at or (434) 973-5132.




A number of SSO agency and rail transit agency representatives have volunteered to support development of the agenda for the 11th Annual SSO Program Meeting.  FTA will be conducting a teleconference call with these volunteers in mid-July, and hopes to have a draft agenda out to everyone by early August.  At the current time, FTA anticipates joint and break-out sessions focusing on the following topics:


• Implementing the Hazard Management Process specified in 49 CFR Part 659

• Strategies and Techniques for Conducting Accident Investigations and Developing Effective Corrective Action Plans

• Enhancing Track Worker Protection

• Performing Safety Oversight of Maintenance Activities as required in 49 CFR Part 659

• Status of Revisions to Part 10 of the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD)

• Update regarding FTA’s initiatives to address open NTSB recommendations

• Sharing of effective oversight practices

• Resources devoted to SSO and rail transit agency safety programs


Metro Transit will also be providing a tour of the Hiawatha Light Rail Line and there will be a group dinner at the Mall of America.


For additional information please call Annabelle Boyd, FTA SSO Program Contractor, at (434) 466-4727.


Please feel free to distribute this information throughout your organization as appropriate.





Herman C. Shipman

Deputy Regional Administrator