Our New Transportation LegislationConcerns & Opportunities…
Erik Hein President of Preservation Action Registered Lobbyist From Bucks County, PAWho am I? Live in Columbia Heights, District of Columbia Penn State University (B Hum.) George Washington University (MA AMSTD, HP) Trustee of the Committee of 100 on the Federal City, Board Member US/ICOMOS Former Positions and Board Service… Historic Harrisburg Association, the Friends of the Star Barn, City of Harrisburg, the People’s Bridge Coalition, the Broad Street Market Corporation, AIA Pennsylvania, DC Preservation League Membership/Marketing/Communications national non-profits and for-profit technology companies
Why the connection betweentransportation andpreservation? A personal example… Franklin Square, Philadelphia. 1895 Map, 1915 Photograph Franklin & Vine, 2012 map & photograph same intersection.
H.R. 4348 (MAP-21) 27 months, $105 billionOverview Former law, SAFETEA-LU expired September of 2009, and was extended 10 times prior to the President signing the new law on July 6th.
Transportation Enhancements (funding) Competition for smaller amount of money Streamlining Exemption from NEPA review for advance acquisitionConcerns Categorical exclusion from EA’s or EIS’s in emergencies Categorical exclusion from EA’s or EIS’s in existing “right-of-way” Categorical exemption from EA’s or EIS’s less than $5 million Categorical exemption from EA’s or EIS’s 15% or less federal funds (unless project over $30 million) General calls to find other ways, processes to expedite project delivery
SAFETEA-LU MAP-21 10% mandatory set- Approx $808 million for aside for 12 eligible TransportationTransportation activities (several preservation related). Alternatives (redefinedEnhancements In 2010 about $886 TE), preservation still million apportioned. eligible…BUT… $927 million in 2011.
• As redefined, acquisition of historic easements or sites, transportation museums andTransportation scenic/historic byways are gone. Alternatives • Transportation Alternatives also compete with Safe Routes to Schools and Recreational Trails Program.
• TRANSPORTATION ALTERNATIVES ‘‘(A) Construction, planning, and design of on-road and off-road trail facilities for pedestrians, bicyclists, and other nonmotorized forms of transportation, including sidewalks, bicycle infrastructure, pedestrian and bicycle signals, traffic calming techniques, lighting and other safety-related infrastructure, and transportation projects to achieve compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 12101 et seq.). ‘‘(B) Construction, planning, and design of infrastructure-related projects and systems that will provide safe routes for non-drivers, including children, older adults, and individuals withTransportation disabilities to access daily needs. ‘‘(C) Conversion and use of abandoned railroad corridors for trails for pedestrians, bicyclists, Alternatives or other non-motorized transportation users. ‘‘(D) Construction of turnouts, overlooks, and viewing areas. ‘‘(E) Community improvement activities, including— ‘‘(i) inventory, control, or removal of outdoor advertising; ‘‘(ii) historic preservation and rehabilitation of historic transportation facilities; ‘‘(iii) vegetation management practices in transportation rights-of-way to improve roadway safety, prevent against invasive species, and provide erosion control; and ‘‘(iv) archaeological activities relating to impacts from implementation of a transportation project eligible under this title. ‘‘(F) Any environmental mitigation activity, including pollution prevention and pollution abatement activities and mitigation to— ‘‘(i) address stormwater management, control, and water pollution prevention or abatement related to highway construction or due to highway runoff, including activities described in sections 133(b)(11), 328(a), and 329; or ‘‘(ii) reduce vehicle-caused wildlife mortality or to restore and maintain connectivity among terrestrial or aquatic habitats.’’
Pennsylvania Preservation TE Funding 1992 to 2011: 3) Scenic/historic acquisitions $4,468,000 4) Scenic/historic highway programs & welcome centers $9,146,092Transportation 5) Landscaping and scenic beautification $126,016,403Enhancements 6) Historic preservation $10,716,311 7) Preservation historic transportation facilities $57,774,608 8) Rail corridor preservation and trail development $68,102,531 10) Archaeological planning and research $791,795 12) Transportation museums $6,836,130 Manassas-Guth Covered Bridge; Manheim Railroad Station; Daniel Lady Farm, Gettysburg
Section 1302: Exemption from NEPA review for advance acquisition • States can purchase “real property interests” (for an anticipated federally funded transportation project) in advance of full NEPA reviews.Streamlining • States must certify in writing the acquisition will not have an adverse environmental impact and will not limit alternatives. • Section 106 still applies • Secretary may establish conditions • Before federal reimbursement, NEPA must be completed Potential Problem: Certifying in writing does not guarantee that acquisition prior to review will not bias decisions or limit alternatives.
Section 1315: Categorical exclusion from EA’s or EIS’s in emergencies • For reconstruction or repair of roads, highways and bridges if in the same location, is of the same design, capacity, and dimensions.Streamlining • Materials are not mentioned. • Section 106 still applies • The Secretary is instructed to propose rules as to how to accomplish this categorical exclusion. Potential Problem: Depends upon rule making. “Same design,” is a loose term – particularly without material consideration.
Section 1316: Categorical exclusion from EA’s or EIS’s in existing “right-of-way” • Property purchased for construction or mitigation • Roadways, bridges, interchanges, culverts, drainage, clear zones, traffic control signage, landscaping, andStreamlining any rest areas with direct access to a controlled access highway • Section 106 still applies • Secretary is to promulgate regulations Potential Problem: Depends entirely upon contents of the regulations. Rights-of-way are held by DOT’s nationwide and include historic resources.
Section 1317: EA and EIS exemptions for small projects • Categorical exemption from EA’s or EIS’s less than $5 millionStreamlining • Categorical exemption from EA’s or EIS’s 15% or less federal funds (unless project over $30 million) • Section 106 Still Applies • Secretary of Transportation required to promulgate regulations Potential Problem: Small projects can still have a big impact. This depends upon how the regulations are written.
General calls to find other ways,Streamlining processes to expedite project delivery ????
Victories: • Preservation funding eligible • More State/Local Opportunity • National Historic Preservation Act (Section 106) not specifically targeted • 4(f) remainsOverall Losses: • Funding for Byways, Acquisitions • Less Money Available • States can choose other programs • NEPA Exemptions • NEPA/Section 106 Coordination – exempting one may impact the other
State/Local Access to Funding Competitive grants Rulemaking Rulemaking is a collaborative process. COMMENT!!!OPPORTUNITIES 2014 – The Next Transportation Bill To do well, we will need: Good Data… Job Creation Demonstrated Return on Investment Improved Project Delivery Times Documented Community Support
Cooperative Focus on Efficient Project DeliveryPrinciples… Wise use of public funds Mutual interest in saving places & pursuing good transportation policy