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RV 2015: Sustainable Corridors: Broad and Specific Looks by Robert Hastings

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What does it mean to build a sustainable corridor? How do you honor the overall goal of conserving resources, but also engage stakeholders to develop the right type of project for their community? Take a wider look at the national perspective on building sustainable corridors. What is being done across the country to conserve resources and involve communities in these efforts? Then hear stories about a successful sustainable corridor in Portland; Albuquerque's BRT project; and an urban green plan to transform existing park-and-ride lots along Los Angeles' growing transit network into more sustainable places.

Moderator: Shelley Poticha, AICP, Director, Urban Solutions, Natural Resources Defense Council; Board Member, Board of Directors, Rail~Volution, Washington, DC
Katherine Lemmon, Transportation Planning Manager, Metro, Los Angeles, California
Robert Hastings, Agency Architect, TriMet, Portland, Oregon
David Leard, AICP, Senior Management Consultant, HDR, Seattle, Washington

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RV 2015: Sustainable Corridors: Broad and Specific Looks by Robert Hastings

  1. 1. Sustainability- Have faith in the Measurable… and the Immeasurable Robert Hastings, FAIA Agency Architect TriMet Capital Projects 2015 Railvolution, Dallas TX October 28, 2015
  2. 2. Three Points •How TriMet fashioned a comprehensive Sustainability Program •Used ENVISION™ to measure the quantitative and qualitative outcomes •Sustainability Initiative Focus- turning remnant properties (trash) into useful projects (treasure)
  3. 3. Project Overview •Extension of light rail from Portland State University south •10 new stations—two on the west side of the Willamette River and eight on the east side •The Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Bridge spanning the river from OSHU’s future South Waterfront campus to OMSI •South terminus on SE Park Avenue in Clackamas County
  4. 4. Project Overview • $1.49 billion (50% FTA funding) • Up to 14,500 jobs created • 7.3-mile light rail extension • 10 elevated structures • 718 vehicle parking at 2 Park & Rides • 445 bicycle parking • 22,800 weekday rides by 2030 • 10 major contracts totaling ~$700m • 5.1m square feet of property acquired
  5. 5. Corridor Segments •Innovation Quadrant •Neighborhoods/Employment Segment •Neighborhoods/ Recreation Segment •Downtown Milwaukie Segment •Green Gateway/ Multi-modal Segment
  6. 6. Sustainability Program Summary •Create a ‘new normal’ of agency integration of project-wide sustainability initiatives •Internally- Lead a new direction of ‘State of Good Repair’; build in resiliency •Externally- make connections to neighborhoods, communities •Holistic, inclusive engagement, collaborative support, demonstrate TriMet values •Seek, select, utilize new innovations in measurements for sustainability- Quantitative & Qualitative
  7. 7. Sustainability Program  FTA/EPA/HUD Partnership: • Livability Principles- protect the environment, promote equitable development, and help to address the challenges of climate change • Six guiding livability principles  Provide more transportation choices  Promote equitable, affordable housing  Enhance economic competitiveness  Support existing communities  Coordinate and leverage federal policies and investment  Value communities and neighborhoods From the FTA Sustainability Toolkit, August 2011 edition
  8. 8. Sustainability Program  TriMet Values: holistic approach, be a national leader • Progressively build on previous project experience • Create a ‘new normal’ of agency integration of project-wide sustainability initiatives • Internally: Lead a new direction of ‘State of Good Repair’; build in resiliency for daily operations • Externally: Make connections to neighborhoods, communities, partner with commerce/govt.
  9. 9. Sustainability: Going Beyond the Triple Bottom Line Conventional sustainability frameworks seek to measure the ability to deliver economic performance, environmental excellence and social contribution. Quadruple Bottom Line – includes Governance Quintuple Bottom Line – changes Culture How do you measure the effectiveness of sustainability strategies spanning these realms?
  10. 10. Program Development  January 2010,TriMet workshop- led by VIA Architects • Design/Engineering • Operations • Facilities Maintenance
  11. 11.  Broad Themes • Throughout Design, Construction, Maintenance • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Program Development
  12. 12.  Natural Systems • Storm water treatments • Landscape materials Program Development
  13. 13.  Habitat • Willamette River • Crystal Springs • Tacoma Park & Ride • Trolley Trail & Park Avenue Program Development
  14. 14.  Innovations • Eco-track • Eco-roof • Renewable Energy • LED Lighting • Durable Materials Program Development
  15. 15.  28 viable initiatives Three Categories- -Do, integrate into the project -Consider, needs more information -Already happening, track quantities and impacts Program Development
  16. 16.  Do - Top 10 1. Smart Track- happening at Park Ave 2. Wayside Energy- happening at Park Ave 3. Pervious Paving- done 4. Eco trackway- done at Lincoln Station 5. Durability- throughout the Project 6. Material Salvage- throughout the Project 7. Bicycle & Pedestrian Connectivity- throughout the Project 8. Art- Sustainability Themes- throughout the Project 9. Provide Habitat- throughout the Project 10.Flex Parking; Zipcar, Getaround- Tacoma & Park Ave P & R Program Development
  17. 17.  Consider 11.Commissioning – in process 12.Vehicle Charging – happening at Park Ave 13.Vegetated Structures – on some system buildings 14.Temporary Art During Construction - done 15.LEED Certification – happening at Center Street 16.Habitat Protection - done 17.Solar Energy (Wind too!) – platform shelters, buildings, Bridge VAWT 18.Transit Oriented Development – in process Program Development
  18. 18.  Already Happening - Track Quantities 19.Solar Energy at Ruby Junction 20.Train Grey Water Recycling Washing 21.Water Quality 22.Landscaping 23.Ecosystems 24.Noise Pollution Mitigation 25.Light Pollution; dark skies initiative 26.Material Selection; local sourcing 27.Construction Sustainability Programs 28.Composite Ties Program Development
  19. 19. THE NEED FOR A Transit FRAMEWORK There’s been significant focus on the sustainability of the built environment, but not in infrastructure, which covers larger areas and has wider, more variable impacts The lack of indicators and assessment methods to comprehensively measure the progress toward sustainable infrastructure has been a barrier to its development.
  20. 20. • Reporting Results- “so what does it all mean?”  Help TriMet evaluate the effectiveness of its sustainability strategy  Identify additional opportunities for sustainable construction  Communicate the effectiveness of sustainability initiatives to internal and external stakeholders Program Implementation Tracking/Metrics
  21. 21. • JLA Public Involvement with Parametrix • ENVISION- new innovative national methodology for transit • INVEST- new pilot project methodology for Federal Highway Administration • Reporting Results- “so what does it all mean?” Program Implementation Tracking/Metrics
  22. 22. •ENVISIONTM- a complete approach; innovative methodology for infrastructure Program Implementation- ENVISIONTM
  23. 23. •Provided guidance and tools to further improve the sustainability of the PMLR •Provide a baseline for future reporting and benchmarking by collecting and displaying sustainability metrics for the design and construction of the PMLR •Display the breadth and depth of TriMet’s commitment to sustainability in order to educate and hopefully inspire others outside of the agency; and •Encourage an open and honest conversation about the challenges faced and solutions needed to move forward Program Implementation- ENVISIONTM
  24. 24. •ENVISIONTM is designed to be used as a project assessment tool and to provide guidance for sustainable infrastructure design. •Applies to all phases of infrastructure development “The purpose of ENVISIONTM is to initiate a systemic change…to transform the way infrastructure is designed, built, and operated.” -William Bertera Program Implementation- ENVISIONTM
  25. 25. 60 Possible Credits in 5 Categories Purpose, Community, Well- being Siting, Land & Water, Biodiversity Materials, Energy, Water Collaboration, Management, Planning Emission, Resilience Source: Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure 2013. Program Implementation- ENVISIONTM
  26. 26. Levels of achievement: 1.Improved 2.Enhanced 3.Superior 4.Conserving 5.Restorative Source: Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure 2013. Program Implementation- ENVISIONTM
  27. 27. Qualitative assessment methods- example: turning building demolition into a training opportunity for local firefighters 1. We crosswalk initiatives to the appropriate credit(s), which in this case is “LD1.3 Foster Collaboration and Teamwork.” 2. Using building demolition as a training opportunity shows a shift from ‘business-as-usual’ to a systems view of project design and delivery, helping TriMet earn a “Superior” Level of Achievement for this credit. Program Implementation- ENVISIONTM
  28. 28. Quantitative assessment methods Sustainability Strategy Effectiveness Measure Potential Measurement Methodology Unit Meaningful Interpretation of Strategy Potential/Example of Meaningful Interpretation SmartTrack Engineering Energy Savings, Air Emissions Avoided Measure the total amount of energy saved due to adjustments in track geometry over the proposed lifetime of the system. This measurement could be interpreted from the track profiles created by the Track Engineer (URS). Kilowatt Hours (kWh) of Electricity Saved Using Agency-Approved Equivalency Calculators (Such as the EPA GHG Calculator which can be accessed online at http://www.epa.gov/cleanenergy/energy- resources/calculator.html), develop meaningful equivalency messaging. "Smart Track Engineering Saves Enough Energy to Power X Number of Portland Homes for One Year". Wayside Regenerative Energy Storage Energy Savings, Air Emissions Avoided Measure the total energy savings realized by reconverting energy by using motors as generators when braking. This measurement could be interpreted using existing systems and architectural plans prepared by Systems Engineer (LTK). Kilowatt Hours (kWh) of Electricity Saved Using Agency-Approved Equivalency Calculators (Such as the EPA GHG Calculator which can be accessed online at http://www.epa.gov/cleanenergy/energy- resources/calculator.html), develop meaningful equivalency messaging. "Regenerative Energy Storage Saves Enough Energy to Power X Number of Electrical Vehicles for One Year". Salvage Materials from Selected Demolished Buildings Waste Avoided, Air Emissions Avoided, Energy Saved, Quantity of Oil and Gas NOT Consumed, and other metrics. EPA created the Waste Reduction Model (WARM) to help solid waste planners and organizations track and voluntarily report greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reductions from several different waste management practices. Kilowatt Hours (kWh) of Electricity Saved, Tons of Emissions Avoided, Tons of Waste Beneficially Reused, Gallons of Gasoline Saved, and more. WARM allows users to compare baseline scenarios of material consumption with alternative, more sustainable scenarios. The JLA team could populate material recovered (tons) from buildings using data collected by Stacy and Witbeck. "During construction, the PMLR team salvaged X tons of building materials for beneficial re-use. This has the same impact on the climate as planning X number of trees." Bicycle Access/Bike - Ped Connection/ Flex Bicycling Several, including gallons of gasoline saved, air emissions avoided, and number and type of non- motorized transport users. The Transportation Research Board has published data on how bicycle access affects ridership. Using this data as a baseline, the JLA project team could apply a framework for evaluating non- motorized transportation benefits and costs developed the Victoria Transport Policy Institute in British Columbia. The "Units" of measurement could be as diverse as the categories of non-motorized transport benefits and costs, which include "Improved walking and cycling conditions ", "Increased walking and cycling activity", "Reduced automobile travel", "Land Use Impacts", "Economic Development", and "Cost". In the category of Reduced Automobile Travel, examples of meaningful metrics include congestion reduction, road and parking facility cost savings, consumer savings, accident reductions, energy conservation and air emissions reductions. "The PMLR makes it possible for X number of people a year to use their bikes and public transit to get to work. This amounts to a savings of X gallons of gasoline each year." Wayside Regenerative Energy Storage Energy Savings, Air Emissions Avoided Measure the total energy savings realized by reconverting energy by using motors as generators when braking. This measurement could be interpreted using existing systems and architectural plans prepared by Systems Engineer (LTK). Kilowatt Hours (kWh) of Electricity Saved Using Agency-Approved Equivalency Calculators (Such as the EPA GHG Calculator which can be accessed online at http://www.epa.gov/cleanenergy/energy- resources/calculator.html), develop meaningful equivalency messaging. "Regenerative Energy Storage Saves Enough Energy to Power X Number of Electrical Vehicles for One Year". Program Implementation- ENVISIONTM
  29. 29. • Gideon Urban Micro Business Incubators (GUMBI) – Clinton Station • Heads and Tails – SE 17th Corridor • Sparrow Commons – ODOT Pit/South Milwaukie • Update on Brooklyn Tool Kit “The Portland-Milwaukie light rail alignment shall weave itself into the natural, economic and human fabric of the adjacent neighborhoods more than any previous TriMet alignment. For, rather than TriMet distinguishing this alignment as a system within Portland, it will become the city itself.”
  30. 30. Overarching Goals for All of the Projects • Leverage highest and best use of TriMet-owned station area parcels • Facilitate the early approval, support and guidance from BDS, BOPS, PBOT the City of Milwaukie and Clackamas County • Engage a diverse range of developers (non-profits, small scale builders, etc.), spread the wealth of potential partners • Utilize existing public and private sector financing partnerships • Move toward "in-the-ground" or "completed by" ribbon-cutting time-line
  31. 31. Clinton Station Gideon Urban Micro Business Incubators (GUMBI) Goals: • Activate station area • Create business incubators on TriMet-owned 16 x 800 foot parcel • Jumpstart future station area development
  32. 32. • Adjacent to heavy freight rail corridor • Occupancy scheduled for April 2012 • 4 Buildings at 16 foot widths Precedent By Green Gables
  33. 33. • Green building and usury practices • Fully leased with waiting list
  34. 34. Proposed: Gideon Urban Micro Business Incubators (GUMBI)
  35. 35. • Same sidewalk width as PMLR 90% drawings • Same amount of stormwater management as 90% drawings • 50% of on-street parking for north side of Gideon GUMBI ROW and Stormwater Management Stormwater Treatment Between Buildings Stormwater Treatment in ROW
  36. 36. Existing 90% Drawing Proposed Gideon Incubators
  37. 37. 1. Market analysis undertaken 2. Presentations made to TriMet's real estate managers 3. Developer of Front Street Project fully engaged 4. Project conceptually approved and unconditionally supported by BDS, BOPS, PBOT Next Steps: • Properties purchased by TriMet • TriMet issues RFQ/P 2013 status of GUMBI:
  38. 38. 1. TriMet initiated and led RFQ/ RFP 2. Selects developer; ‘Reworks’ 3. Highly innovative TOD approach; small foot print commercial, maker spaces 4. ‘Intertwine’- highly supported by City of Portland 5. Inspires other actions; private development with City collaboration Next Steps: • Final permitting • Construction begins early 2016 GUMBI: Today
  39. 39. SE 17th Avenue Corridor Improvements TriMet-owned properties slated for TriMet bus driver parking TriMet purchase but no identified use
  40. 40. Near Term and Far Term Development Recommendations for SE 17th Avenue (Heads and Tails) Goals for Heads and Tails: • Determine highest and best use for all parcels • Build ridership • Provide parking for TriMet • Provide neighborhood-scale retail services for residents and workers • Preserve appropriate expansion opportunities for TriMet
  41. 41. MicroIncubator ground floor Residential apartments or condos above Small commercial spaces on ground floor 2-story loft units shown above, parking in between Typical small commercial spaces on ground floor Small, economical apartment flats shown above (cyan), parking in between Potential Development Configurations
  42. 42. A B-1 B-2 Apartments over Micro Commercial Loft Apartments with Commercial in Three Buildings Eff. Apartments with Commercial in Three Buildings Sitework Building $130,000 $1,468,500 $130,000 $1,981,500 $130,000 $2,515,500 Total Construction $1,598,500 $2,111,500 $2,645,500 Soft Costs $559,475 $739,025 $925,925 Total Development Cost (TDC) $2,157,975 $2,850,525 $3,571,425 Capitalized Value $1,826,082 $2,542,643 $3,437,987 GAP ($331,893) ($307,882) ($133,438) Gap as % of Cap Value -18.2% -12.1% -3.9% Project Economics Gaps can be reduced or eliminated with ten or more units to qualify for the Transit Tax Credit
  43. 43. RECOMMENDATION #1 Utilize PG&E site and Center Street “Heads” for near term TriMet parking and potential for long term future TriMet or Private development. RECOMMENDATION #2 Create fertile RFQ process for development of “tails” Possibilities Project Recommendations
  44. 44. Potential Partners • Smaller, design/develop or design/build entities • Reach • Proud Ground • Habitat for Humanity • Portland YouthBuilders • Hammer&Hand • Green Gables • Neil Kelly • Benson High School • Umpqua Bank • American Institute of Architects Work with a diverse set of builders and developers rather than a single firm.
  45. 45. Status of Heads and Tails Project to Date 1. Presentations made to TriMet's parking and real estate managers 2. Exploratory discussions undertaken with a range of non-profit and for profit developers 3. Concepts approved in principle by BOPS, BDS, PBOT Next Steps: • Further conversations with not-for-profit development groups • Hold for-profit developer round table discussion with TriMet prior to issuing RFQ/P
  46. 46. Heads and Tails Projects: Today 1. TriMet initiated and led RFQ/ RFP 2. Selected developer 3. Highly innovative TOD; market rate housing, retail, parking 4. City of Portland support Next Steps: • Finalize developer/TriMet agreement • Close funding gap •Construction; mid 2016
  47. 47. SE 17th Avenue- SE Boise to SE Mall Streets
  48. 48. SE 17th Avenue- SE Boise to SE Mall Streets
  49. 49. Enhancing the Brooklyn Neighborhood • Tapping into existing improvement funding programs • Improving safety, security, circulation and sense of pride • Facilitating the residents opportunity to improve their homes
  50. 50. The Brooklyn Toolkit • Additional Street Trees • New Bike Boulevard • Improved pedestrian circulation/green streets • Additional streetlights • Energy audits and improvement grants • Additional curb ramps • Fast-track granny flat permitting and financing TODAY TOMORROW Toolkit Could Include:
  51. 51. New Curb Ramp Opportunities
  52. 52. Existing Streetlights
  53. 53. Green Street & Bike Boulevard Opportunities
  54. 54. Street Tree Gaps & Opportunities
  55. 55. Potential Accessory Dwelling Units
  56. 56. The Brooklyn Toolkit
  57. 57. ODOT Gravel Pit, Co-Housing Development Sparrow Commons
  58. 58. Co-Housing Precedents • Low Impact to Neighborhood • Shared Open Space • Community Resource
  59. 59. Co-Housing Promotes: • Neighborhood livability • Sense of community • Reduced infrastructure & pavement • Smart building considerations
  60. 60. Sparrow Commons Illustration by Dave Carpenter
  61. 61. Status of Sparrow Commons • Unofficial conceptual approval by City of Milwaukie Development Staff • New City of Milwaukie housing code to be adapted by City Council, March, 2012 • Specific User Identified • All other work on hold until determination by TriMet

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