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November 2015

In This Issue
Transportation Policy Council - October 23, 2015
Clean Cities Webinar
2015-2018 TIP Major Amendments Public Meeting
Save the Date for the Next Fall Planning Workshop
Montgomery County Thoroughfare Plan Public Meetings
US 59/IH 69 Corridor Congestion Mitigation Study
Westchase District Pedestrian & Bicycle Plan Public Meeting
Keeping Us Moving - Save the Date
Fueling METRO from the Freedom CNG Station
EPA Ozone Standards Raised for Public Health
Local Initiatives Projects (LIP) Funding Availability Presentation
H-GAC Announces Marine/Construction Equipment Grant Funding
Funding Available for Electric Delivery Vehicles in Houston
Did You Know....
H-GAC In The News
Join Our Mailing List!
Mark Your Calendar
TAC - Wednesday, November 18, 2015, 9:30 a.m. 

TPC - Friday, November 20, 2015, 9:30 a.m.

Clean Cities Webinar
Wednesday, November 4, 2015
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. 

2015-2018 TIP Major Amendments Public Meeting 
Wednesday, November 4, 2015
5:30 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Houston-Galveston Area Council
3555 Timmons Ln, 2nd Floor Rm A
Houston, TX 77027

Save the Date for the Next Fall Planning Workshop
Wednesday, November 4, 2015
9:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. 
Houston-Galveston Area Council
3555 Timmons Ln, 2nd Floor Rm B
Houston, TX 77027

Montgomery County Thoroughfare Plan Public Meetings
Tuesday, November 10, 2015
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
City of Conroe - Conroe Tower
300 W.Davis, 6th Floor
Conroe,Tx 77301

Thursday, November 12, 2015
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Shenandoah Municipal Complex
29955 I-45 North
Shenandoah, TX 77381

Tuesday, November 17, 2015
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Magnolia High School
14350 FM 1488
Magnolia, TX 77354

Thursday, November 19, 2015
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
R.B. Tullis Library
21569 US 59 
New Caney, TX 77357

US 59/IH 69 Corridor Congestion Mitigation Study Public Meeting
Thursday, November 12, 2015
4:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Houston-Galveston Area Council
3555 Timmons Lane, 2nd Floor, Rm B
Houston, TX 77027

Westchase District Pedestrian & Bicycle Plan Public Meeting
Thursday, November 12, 2015
5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
HCC Campus
2811 Hayes Rd.
Houston, TX 77082

Keeping Us Moving Workshop
Friday, November 13, 2015
11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Norris Conference Center -
City Centre
816 Town and Country Blvd.
Houston, TX 77024

We Are Social!
Clean Air Champion of the Month
Transportation Policy Council - October 23, 2015
The TPC approved the 2015 Call for Projects 10-Year Plan funding scenarios. The TIP Subcommittee met on October 1, 2015 and recommended two funding scenarios depending on the outcome of the Proposition 7 ballot initiative. The scoring/ranking information, project readiness and funding eligibility was considered in identifying the timing of recommended funding in the FY 2016-2025 time frame. A summary of the recommended 10-year plan scenarios can be found HERE.


A resolution was passed affirming the need for additional transportation funding for state highways in Texas and the eight-county Houston-Galveston region. On Nov. 3, 2015, Texans will vote on Proposition 7, a constitutional amendment to dedicate portions of revenue from the state's general sales and use tax as well as from the motor vehicle sales and rental tax to the State Highway Fund for non-tolled projects. This would dedicate $2.5 billion per year of statewide sales tax and a percentage of portions of the statewide motor vehicle sales and rental tax to the State Highway Fund. 
 
TPC authorized the TPC Chair to correspond with Chairman John Thune, U.S. Senator, regarding Positive Train Control regulations in the Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008. This is in response to a request for input regarding the implementation of Positive Train Control (PTC) systems and the potential consequences of the December 31, 2015 deadline. To read the letter, click HERE.
 
The revised US 290 Locally Preferred Alternative was approved by the TPC. Angela Stoddard P.E., (HNTB) presented an overview for the initial construction phase which includes one additional general purpose lane in each direction from I-610 to SH 6 while maintaining the one-lane reversible facility for HOV and toll vehicles in the center of US 290 from I-610 to the Grand Parkway. Improvements to make the facility safer and more efficient will include mainlane shoulders to accommodate vehicle emergencies. Once construction is completed, the intention is for the new reversible facility to have shoulders wide enough for a vehicle to safely pass a stalled vehicle in the lane. For more details click HERE.

Chairman Garcia and President Lambert gave an update on the status of METRO's New Bus Network. On August 16, 2015, METRO introduced a completely redesigned local bus network. The result is a new grid-like bus network with 22 frequent routes that compliment other bus and light rail services throughout the METRO Service Area to make transit travel a variable option for more people and more types of trips. METRO has also introduced new technology tools, such as the Trip App, Interactive Service Map, and Next Bus Texting to make the new local bus system easier to use and understand. Click HERE to watch the presentation.
 
Galveston Mayor Jim Yarbrough and Texas City Commissioner Dee Ann Haney presented an update about Galveston County's Transit providers. Both Connect Transit and Island Transit provide an extensive level of service with extremely limited resources to Galveston County residents and commuters. The agencies are seeking alternative means to supplement transit funding. Future improvements to Galveston County transit services may include connectivity between Houston and Galveston. View the presentation HERE
 
The TPC agenda with audio and video are available HERE.

Clean Cities Webinar
Clean Cities PEV Discussion Group: Lessons Learned During EV Project Charging Station Installations Webinar

On November 4th, the U.S. Department of Energy will host a webinar targeted to those persons or organizations interested in knowing more about installing charging stations, who are considering having one installed, or those who are currently looking for charging station hosts. Following the presentation, participants will have the opportunity to ask a panel of experts specific questions related to charging station installation. The webinar will be presented by Jim Francfort, Lead Advanced Vehicle Researcher at Idaho National Laboratory. 

The webinar is open to all from Nov. 04, 2015 at 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. Please share with other interested parties.

Click HERE to register today!

2015-2018 TIP Major Amendments Public Meeting 
The 2015-2018 TIP public comment period for Major Amendments to the 2015-2018 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) began on Monday, October 26, 2015 and will end on Monday, November 9, 2015 at 5:00 pm.
 
The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) has determined that it is in the public's interest and would provide the best value to the State to exercise its option to reconstruct the direct connectors at the interchange of SH 288 and IH 610 as part of the construction contract for the SH 288 toll lanes. This amendment would modify the project scope of work to include the interchange work.

2015-2018 TIP Major Amendments Public Meeting
Wednesday November 4, 2015 
5:30 p.m.-7:00 p.m.
Houston-Galveston Area Council
3555 Timmons Lane, 2nd Floor Conference Room A.
Houston, TX 77027

This meeting will also be simulcast via webinar (register HERE). 
Save the Date for the Next Fall Planning Workshop
Registration is now open for the next: 

Fall Planning Workshop for Local Governments
Friday, December 4, 2015
9 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Houston-Galveston Area Council
3555 Timmons Lane, 2nd Floor, Rm B 
Houston, TX 77027
 
At this half-day event, hear how communities are marketing themselves, engaging stakeholders, and quickly implementing on-the-ground projects to create a vibrant place to live, work, and play. Expert speakers will offer tips on knowing your community, getting people engaged and excited, getting started, and promoting your community. 
 
Each year, H-GAC presents a fall planning workshop for local governments featuring presentations on best planning practices for communities. There is no cost to attend this workshop, but space is limited.

More information is available online

Montgomery County Thoroughfare Plan Public Meetings
Montgomery County, the City of Conroe, H-GAC, and TxDOT have worked together to develop a Thoroughfare Plan for Montgomery County. The proposed Plan is a long-range transportation planning tool that will guide the development of Montgomery County for decades to come by identifying needed roadways and preserving future right-of-way. The draft Thoroughfare Plan will be presented at four public meetings in Montgomery County. 

The meetings will be held on:
 
Tuesday, November 10, 2015
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
City of Conroe - Conroe Tower
300 W. Davis, 6th Floor
Conroe, TX 77301
Thursday, November 12, 2015
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Shenandoah Municipal Complex
29955 I-45 North
Shenandoah, TX 77381

Tuesday, November 17, 2015
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Magnolia High School
14350 FM 1488
Magnolia, TX 77354
Thursday, November 19, 2015
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
R.B. Tullis Library
21569 US 59
New Caney, TX 77357

 For more information, visit www.montgomerycountymobility.com 

US 59/IH 69 Corridor Congestion Mitigation Study Public Meeting 
public meeting will be held to present the scope of the study effort, existing conditions, and preliminary draft alternative concepts being considered for future analysis. H-GAC invites the general public, business owners and local officials to attend the public meeting on the US 59/IH 69 Corridor Congestion Mitigation Study.
   
Thursday, November 12, 2015
4:00 p.m.- 7:00 p.m.
Houston-Galveston Area Council
3555 Timmons Lane, 2nd Floor, Rm B
Houston, TX 77027

For more information visit the project website at: www.mysouthwestfreeway.com.
Westchase District Pedestrian & Bicycle Plan Public Meeting
The Westchase District invites you to attend their Pedestrian & Bicycle Plan Kickoff Meeting. Experts will discuss the state of transportation infrastructure in the area and how your input can be used to create a high-quality bike & pedestrian environment within the District. For more information visit www.westchasedistrict.com.

Thursday, November 12, 2015
5:30 p.m. - 7:30p.m.
HCC Campus
2811 Hayes Rd.
Houston, TX 77082
Keeping Us Moving - Register Now
Keeping Us Moving LogoMark Your Calendars for Keeping Us Moving: Great Places - More Choices 
 
This half-day event offers a collaborative forum around topics related to the Livable Centers and Pedestrian/Bicyclist programs at H-GAC. The program will include a luncheon with keynote speaker Adam Thies, former director of planning and development initiatives for the City of Indianapolis.
 
The workshop will also include two afternoon breakout sessions: Emerging Trends, highlighting technical and policy considerations in transportation planning; and Back to Basics, touching on planning, funding, and H-GAC tools available.
 
Keeping Us Moving Workshop
Friday, November 13, 2015
11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Norris Conference Center - City Centre 
816 Town and Country Blvd. 
Houston, TX 77024.

Registration for this event is $35. Register HERE today.
Fueling METRO from the Freedom CNG Station
Freedom CNG is proud to announce their newest station will be providing fuel to Houston's METRO's new CNG bus fleet for the years to come. The Freedom CNG station, their third in Houston, will open to the public in the 4th Quarter of 2015 and is located inside the Pinto Business Park in North Houston at I-45 & Beltway 8 located inside the Pinto Business Park in North

For more information on Freedom CNG stations click HERE.
EPA Ozone Standards Raised for Public Health
On October 1st the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) strengthened the national standard for ground-level ozone pollution to 70 parts per billion (ppb) from 75 ppb. Based on extensive scientific evidence, the new standard will improve public health particularly for at-risk groups including children, the elderly, and people suffering from heart and lung diseases. 

Ozone is a primary component of smog and is formed when nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds emitted primarily from industrial facilities and motor vehicles react in the presence of sunlight. To learn more about ozone and the new ozone standard, please visit the EPA's website HERE.
 
Local Initiatives Projects (LIP) Funding Availability Presentation

TCEQ logo

The Local Initiatives Program (LIP) provides funding to counties participating in the Vehicle Emissions Inspection Maintenance program (Brazoria, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris and Montgomery Counties) for local projects to improve air quality. The 84th Texas Legislature significantly increased available LIP funding, with amounts ranging from $100,000 to $1,700,00 for each county. 

 

For more information on the LIP program, please visit the website


 


 

 

H-GAC Announces Marine/Construction Equipment Grant Funding

H-GAC has announced grant funding available for regional marine vessel owners and regional construction equipment owners for the purchase and deployment of clean diesel or alternative fuel tug, tow/push boats, or heavy-duty construction equipment. The equipment must operate within the Houston-Galveston-Brazoria (HGB) non-attainment area and requires the destruction of the replaced equipment. Applicants are expected to provide two years of data collection and reporting. Responses to the Call for Projects must include CARB or EPA-certified equipment.
 

More information regarding marine projects is available HERE, and information regarding nonroad construction equipment is available HERE.  

Funding Available for Electric Delivery Vehicles in Houston
H-GAC is currently soliciting fleet partners for the deployment of zero-emission delivery vehicles in the greater Houston area. Grant funding is available through a grant from The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), with the goal of demonstrating the viability of all-electric delivery vehicles in the region. The vehicles must operate within the Houston-Galveston-Brazoria non-attainment area and applicants will be responsible for two years of data collection and reporting. Technical assistance is available to fleets wishing to gauge the appropriateness of electric vehicles for their business. For more information, click HERE.
Did You Know....

H-GAC In The News
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