August 2017
Transportation Policy Council - July 28, 2017
From left to right: TPC Chairman Matt Sebesta; Chambers County Commissioner Rusty Senac, Chambers County Engineer Bobby Hall, P.E., TPC Secretary Tom Reid 
On July 28, the Transportation Policy Council (TPC) approved a Resolution of Commendation to outgoing TPC member Bobby Hall, P.E. for his distinguished service to Chambers County and to the Houston-Galveston Area Council. Hall served on the TPC representing Chambers County from 2004-2007 and again from 2013-2017. On July 19, the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) recognized Hall and Amar Mohite, City of Houston, for their service to the TAC.

A resolution amending the 2017-2020 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) and 2040 Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) for two projects of the FM 1463 widening project in Fort Bend County was approved by the TPC. This approval will result in modifications to reflect the current limits, scope, and proposed funding. 

TPC also approved a Resolutions for adoption of the 2018-2019 Unified Planning Work Program (UPWP) and a Resolution for Adoption of the Public Participation Plan (PPP). The UPWP describes the metropolitan transportation planning activities to be conducted during the 2018-2019 Fiscal Years (October 2017 - September 2019) for the Houston-Galveston Transportation Management Area (TMA). The PPP describes techniques used by H-GAC to create opportunities for public involvement and participation in the transportation planning process.

TPC recognized August as Commute Solutions Month. Commute Solutions is a H-GAC program that supports carpooling, teleworking, vanpooling, and other transportation-related options and services. The ultimate goal is to reduce Nitrogen Oxide (NOx) pollution and vehicle miles traveled. 

To view the TPC meeting live-stream archive click HERE
High Capacity Transit Task Force
On July 28, the High Capacity Transit Task Force (HCT) met for the second time. METRO Chair, Carrin Patman, presented the METRONext planning effort which will explore potential investments in various types of transit that will connect more people to more places. The HCT also discussed hosting a workshop that will explore challenges and opportunities of expanding high capacity transit in our area and will review the experience of "peer regions" in their efforts to develop high capacity transit. The goal of the task force is to coordinate with regional stakeholders and identify the benefits, required level of investment, funding solutions, and policy consideration that could advance high capacity transit within our eight-county region. The task force will ultimately submit recommendations to the 2045 Regional Transportation Plan (RTP). 

For more information click HERE.
Mobility Trends Update with Alan Clark
Mobility is continuously evolving with the addition of innovative technology. On July 21, H-GAC MPO Director, Alan Clark, presented the "Impact of Technology on Our Transportation Future" at the Fort Bend County Chambers of Commerce. 

With the eight-county region expected to grow 80-110% over the next 35 years, the population growth will directly impact how we will travel in the future. 

Clark discussed how autonomous vehicles, buses, trucks, and the proper "smart" infrastructure system may result in more efficient, reliable highway travel with lower costs for transit. 

H-GAC is working with stakeholders researching technology advances and developing pilot projects that can inform us on potential costs and benefits, redesign existing (and future) infrastructure, and identify legal and institutional barriers to positive technology changes.
In Case You Missed It (ICYMI) - Brown Bag Lunch Series
"Regulations, Capabilities, Safety Technologies, and Trends for Unmanned Aircraft"

The July Brown Bag Lunch Series presentation featured current and new emerging drone technologies. Kraetti Epperson, CEO and co-founder of Vigilant Aerospace Systems, provided a presentation on fully autonomous collision avoidance software for unmanned aircrafts based on an exclusively licensed NASA patent.


To view the power point presentation click HERE.
Employee Spotlight - Meagan Coughlin 
This month, H-GAC spotlights Public Outreach Program Manager Meagan Coughlin, APR. Meagan leads the outreach team in engaging the public and key stakeholders in the transportation planning process. As a Mississippi native, Meagan joined H-GAC in March with more than a decade of experience in communication and public relations. Prior to arriving in Houston, she worked as the Director of International Communications and Protocol for Mississippi State University's (MSU) International Institute. Meagan is an MSU graduate with an arts and sciences degree in communication with an emphasis in public relations. In 2015, Meagan earned her Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) and began taking classes for a master's degree in public policy and administration. She serves on the board of the Public Relations Society of America Houston Chapter.
Partners in Planning - TxDOT
Photo courtsey of TxDOT
US 290 Update:

TxDOT's contractors on the US 290 project continue to progress with construction activities. Over the last year, traffic has been switched on several segments, putting traffic on new pavement and allowing the contractors to begin demolition on other sections. Last month, the new direct connector linking I-10 outbound to US 290 westbound and I-610 North Loop eastbound was opened to traffic. This opening was significant in that it separates the I-610 northbound weaving movements of drivers coming from I-10 and I-610 northbound as they exit to US 290.
 
The team looks forward to additional traffic switches later this summer to keep the momentum moving on the project. There is light at the end of the tunnel; it is estimated that construction will be complete by the end of 2018.

For more information visit: www.my290.com.
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Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) Meeting
Wednesday, August 16, 2017 
9:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. 
H-GAC Offices
3555 Timmons Lane
2nd Floor Room B.
Houston, TX 77027

Transportation Policy Council (TPC) Meeting
Friday, August 25, 2017
9:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. 
H-GAC Offices
3555 Timmons Lane
2nd Floor Room B.
Houston, TX 77027


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