Use the link below to read Section and Chapter updates for March/April 2009!
ITE Alaska Section
The December 2008 meeting of the ITE Alaska Section had an attendance of 58 and featured guest speaker Lori Schanche. The topic of the presentation was the Non-Motorized Transportation Plan, a community-developed guide to identify and prioritize projects funded through Anchorage Metropolitan Area Solutions and the Capital Improvements Program. The plan is being completed in three phases: Pedestrian Plan (2006), Bicycle Plan (2009) and Areawide Trails Plan Update (2010). Some of the challenges include non-motorized hazards, climate, safe routes, and budget. For more information, visit www.muni.org/transplan/non-motorized.cfm.
Items of business discussed at the December 2008 Section Meeting were: planning for the 2011 District Annual Meeting, Engineer Week (Bayou Bash on Feb. 13 and Banquet with Keynote Speaker Dr. Akasofu, UAF, on Feb. 21), selection of Jim Amundsen as ITE Engineer of the Year, and consideration of the Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum as a new meeting location.
ITE Southern California Section
The January 21, 2009, meeting took place at the Monterey Hill Restaurant in the City of Monterey Park.
At this meeting, staff from The Office of Senior Health in the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health distributed the “Survey of Transportation Engineers on Policies and Procedures for Pedestrian Signaling,” to better understand the standard practices, as part of a research study to improve pedestrian safety and promote leisure as well as utilitarian walking. With an increase in the prevalence of obesity and chronic disease, emerging evidence suggests that built-environment interventions can effectively promote physical activity, which can decrease the risk of these health conditions.
Jon-Eric Santanello and Matt Keller with South Coast Lighting and Design (the vendor sponsor for the meeting) presented their products, including “Sustainable Designs through Outdoor Lighting”, which incorporates the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) incentives. Using sustainable products such as their StressCrete concrete poles, energy saving light emitting diode (LED) fixtures, and wind/solar powered solutions can build LEED credits. For more information visit www.southcoastlighting.com.
Monica Suter began the presentation by posing the question, “How can we better build consensus with the public and get elected official support for engineering recommendations?” She provided real-life examples and training, finishing with some final words of wisdom: While we may be the best engineer, until we can also better sell and communicate our engineering recommendations and principles, we aren’t yet a fully successful engineer. Otherwise, non-Engineers are selected to “manage us”. We can learn these new sales skills without selling out our principles!
ITE Colorado-Wyoming (CO-WY) Section
The Colorado/Wyoming ITE Section held their annual Holiday Luncheon and Food Drive at the Curtis Hotel in Denver on December 5, 2008. Section President Craig Faessler presided over the meeting that was attended by 90 members and guests.
Section Newsletter Co-Editor, Bart Pryzbyl, announced Dave Eberhart as the newsletter’s Puzzle Maniac contest winner. Dave elected to donate his winnings to the Section’s scholarship fund.
It was also announced that the Section’s Annual Ski Train Trip is scheduled for February 7th. Members and guests will travel from Union Station in Denver to the Winter Park Ski Resort to enjoy a day of winter activities.
Nate Larson gave an update on the upcoming Western District Annual Meeting in Denver. The Local Arrangements Committee is looking for volunteers to assist with hosting this event July 12-15, 2009. If you are interested, please contact Nate Larson at 303-299-7835.
Craig Faessler recognized two members, Steve Blue and Carol Walters with Lifetime Member certificates.
Awards Chairman, Dave Hattan, together with Pat Noyes, presented the Lifetime Achievement Award to Allen Albers, for outstanding contribution to the transportation engineering profession. Allen Albers thanked his employer, the City of Lakewood, and received a plaque and resolution from the Western District.
Section Vice President, Ben Waldman, introduced the technical presentation. Steve Hersey of CDOT Region 6 and Nate Larson of URS shared information on the progress of the US 36 Corridor Project, “Curing What Ails US 36 with a Heavy Dose of Vitamin C.”
The Colorado/Wyoming ITE Section held their Annual Vendor Show at the Arvada Center on January 23, 2009, attended by 250 members and guests. Section Vice President Ben Waldman thanked Will Johnson for coordinating the event with 35 vendors showcasing the latest technology for transportation.
Ben Waldman announced the Annual Ski Train Trip to Winter Park (sold out), and the upcoming PTOE Refresher Course (ITE Webinar) offered by the City of Loveland. The next Executive Committee meeting will take place on January 30th.
Dave Hattan, Awards Chairman, called for nominations for the Transportation Professional of the Year awards.
Section Newsletter Co-Editor Bart Pryzbyl announced Tim Murray as the winner of the Puzzle Maniac contest. The prize was a $25 gift certificate.
Alex Ariniello and Will Johnson gave an update on the Western District Meeting to be held in Denver this year. The technical committee is anticipating a great technical program and has received over 100 abstracts so far. They will be reviewing them over the next few weeks. Information will be sent to potential vendors and sponsors in the next month.
Ben Waldman thanked the vendors, and each gave a short presentation on their products and services. Will Johnson, Vendor Show Coordinator, thanked the vendors for attending. Mike Deckard of Reno A&E shared that he had “never seen a turnout like this at an ITE meeting after 30 years in the business!”
A highlight of the show was the Wyoming Student Chapter’s silent auction to raise money for their scholarship fund.
ITE Riverside-San Bernardino Section
On January 15, 2009, the Riverside-San Bernardino Section (RSBITE) held a Vendors Day at the Riverside Convention Center. The show had over 34 vendors and over 180 people attending throughout the day. During lunchtime, Mrs. Jennifer Franco, SANBAG’s Director
of Intergovernmental and Legislative Affairs, discussed these topics:
- State and Federal Economic Stimulus Negotiations,
- Federal Transportation Reauthorization, and
- A Primer on Authorization vs. Appropriations
Mrs. Franco is responsible for creating, communicating and implementing a legislative program and advocacy plan for transportation, regional planning and affordable housing.
View more on the Riverside-San Bernardino Section’s Activities at: westernite.org/Sections/sbr/
ITE San Francisco Bay
On November 13, 2008, the SF Bay Area ITE Section (SFBayITE) conducted a joint meeting with the South Bay ITE Chapter, known as the South Bay Traffic Officials Association (SBTOA), at the Bella Mia Restaurant in San Jose, with 99 people in attendance.
SFBayITE President Wing Lok, and SBTOA President Jaime Rodriguez thanked Godbe Research (www.godberesearch.com) for sponsoring this meeting and reducing admission costs for attendees. Bryan Godbe provided a short presentation on Godbe Research.
Wing announced that the Social Activities Survey for upcoming ITE events would be closing soon. The deadline for submitting nominations for the Section’s 2008 Transportation Professional and Transportation Project of the Year was approaching soon. The winners were to be announced at the January 2009 ITE Meeting.
Rachel Donovan announced the ITE Technical Program, “Transportation Data Needs for Transportation Studies/Modeling/ITS Applications” on November 21 in Redwood City and the ITS California Annual Meeting on December 8-9 in Sacramento.
An ITE member announced the opening of Kimley-Horn’s new office in San Jose.
Wing Lok introduced the guest speaker, Bijan Sartipi, District 4 Director of California Department of Transportation (Caltrans). Mr. Sartipi provided his perspective on funding challenges facing the Bay Area, traffic engineering innovations, congestion management, and information regarding the Bay Bridge construction project.
Check sfbayite.org/pastevents to view the full scribe report, photos, and available presentations for our Section.
ITE Washington State Section
At the September 2008 Section Meeting, Goran Sparrman, Bellevue Director of Transportation Services, spoke on the near-term outlook for transportation in downtown Bellevue, Washington. Over the past several years, new buildings and new overpasses have been built. Regular transit service and optimized signals along with great streets initiatives will encourage public transit use and non-motorized circulation. To meet future transportation needs, a transit Rapid Ride with shorter headways, improvements to major freeway (I-405, I-90, SR 520) interchanges, and a high capacity transit connection were recommended.
Section President Nick Ching announced that these members have achieved ITE Life Membership status: James Zimmerman, Jr., Edward Stephens, Einer Handeland, Michael Birdsall, Jeffrey Webber, and Victor Bishop. The ITE Washington Section was recognized at the ITE Annual Meeting for contributing $2500 to the endowment fund.
Nick Ching, ITE Washington Section president, and Puget Sound Women’s Transportation Seminar (WTS) Chapter president, Brenda Nnambi, presided over the joint meeting at Salty’s on Alki. Mr. Ching announced that ITE will not endorse nor oppose I-985 but will provide information literature for the proposal.
David Beal, Program Manager for Sound Transit, gave a presentation. In 1996, Sound Transit began collecting across county boundaries and has grown to serve 13.7 million riders, averaging 56,000 rides per day on express buses, heavy rail, and light rail.
Voters decided against the Roads and Transit package proposed a year ago. This year, Sound Transit is proposing the ST2 package, streamlined for transit improvements. The new plan would open light rail from Downtown Seattle to the University of Washington and a First Hill street car connector to light rail in 2016. The plan includes extensions to Northgate, Bellevue, and the vicinity of Highline Community College in 2020, service to the Redmond Overlake Transit Center by 2021, and service to Lynnwood and Redondo/Star Lake by 2023. Improvements would reach Tukwila, Auburn, Sumner and Puyallup by 2015 and Mukilteo, Edmonds, Kent, Tacoma, and Lakewood by 2023. Transit projects could be a step towards a sustainably building our community.
by Bruce Newman, Guest Scribe
At the November meeting, Puget Sound Regional Council (PSRC) Program Managers Michael Cummings and Jeff Frkonja described “Destination 2040,” a new regional transportation plan for the year 2040. Their job is to divine the future. What changes in technology will shape transportation? What demo-graphic and economic changes will occur? What will be the political and regulatory landscape in 2040? These are no small questions.
Each of the five alternatives being evaluated includes a mix of projects, with various funding assumptions. Many improvements are common to all alternatives, including Sound Transit East Link (Seattle to Bellevue to Redmond), SR-520 bridge replacement (with variable tolling), conversion from HOV-2 to HOV-3, and the Alaska Way viaduct replacement.
Each alternative invests to different degrees in “Efficiency Improve-ments” (transit, vanpools, TDM) and “System Improvements” (such as widening I-405). Alternatives assuming less available funding focus on efficiency improvements (e.g., “outer tier” park-and-ride lots, expanded transit service hours, and converting HOV lanes to HOT lanes). Other scenarios include more investment in freeway improve-ments, freeway ITS, signal coordination between jurisdictions, and a two-lane regional HOT network. Congestion pricing could be expanded to other facilities beyond SR-167–possibly even to arterials. I-405 could be tolled to fund further improvements. One alternative focuses on making urban areas people-friendly, with more transit expansion and more downtown bikeways.
PSRC will be evaluating each alternative against mobility, growth management, economic prosperity, and environmental stewardship. The refined transportation models will not be based solely on VMT and will take a closer look at travel speeds, fleet mix, and other factors.
A plan must be selected and approved by 2010, to comply with federal clean air regulations, maintain PSRC’s authority to accept federal funds, and—most importantly—ensure the region is attractive enough as a place to live for our grandchildren.
At the December 2008 “ITE Breakfast Meeting and Training,” held in Woodin-ville’s Carol Edwards Center, Section President Nick Ching introduced the speaker, Dina Swires (WSDOT.) Ms. Swires discussed the challenges and successes related to 24 existing and proposed locations for roundabouts on state routes throughout Skagit and Whatcom Counties. Patrick McGrady (Reid Middleton) continued with training on the basic elements of a good roundabout design including: 1) Proper Deflection 2) Good Speed Control and 3) Fluid Drive Path. With these design elements, roundabouts can reduce crash experience by 40%, decrease injuries by 70%, and drop fatalities by 90% over a typical signalized intersection.
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The deadline is the 25th of odd-numbered months. For the May-June issue, turn in your reports by March 25. Each year, one lucky scribe will win the coveted Windiest Scribe Award, currently held by the scribes of the ITE San Francisco Bay Area Section.