Transportation board to review use of dwellings

The Idaho Transportation Board will review the status of ITD-owned dwellings, a process required annually, when members assemble for its February business meeting in Boise Wednesday.

ITD owns three wood-framed houses, 11 manufactured homes, six manufactured bunkhouses, along with two apartments at Johnson Creek and Cavanaugh Bay airstrips; the property is used seasonally.

The department also owns 25 trailer pads, 14 of which are occupied by employee-owned manufactured homes.

ITD provides or rents state-owned dwellings to employees in situations where the best interests of the department are served. In some circumstances, employees live in a state-owned facility as a condition of their employment.

Nine other trailer pads and three ITD-owned houses are located at rest areas around the state. Rest area maintenance contracts require the contractor to be available for daily conferences and on call for emergencies 24 hours a day. Providing state-owned dwellings is part of the consideration of the maintenance contract.

Other board agenda items

Add Transportation Management Area projects
Congress approved the federal Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) transportation act last summer. It includes the consolidation of a number of programs, such as Safe Routes to School, Enhancement and Recreational Trails, into a new Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP). Some TAP funds must be sub-allocated to other entities based on population. Idaho’s only Transportation Management Area (an area with a population of more than 200,000) is the Community Planning Association of Southwest Idaho, or COMPASS. It encompasses the greater-Boise area and will receive approximately $414,000 of Idaho’s TAP funds.

Anticipating the changes in MAP-21, COMPASS solicited applications for TAP funds. It will request board approval to add six projects to the Transportation Alternatives Program:

  • Union Pacific Railroad Rail with Trail Arterials Study, Meridian - $85,000
  • Boise Bike Share Program, Phase 1 - $287,000
  • Ada County Highway District Stormwater Design Guide - $70,000
  • Natures’ Wood Duck Island Trail, near Barber Park - $150,000
  • Treasure Valley YMCA Safe Routes to School Coordinator - $140,000
  • Boise Bike Share Program, Phase 2 - $53,000

Other funds will be used as required local matches. The projects will be programmed in FY13 and FY14.

Overview of TAP
The agenda also includes an overview of the new Transportation Alternatives Program. The Federal Highway Administration requested ITD to establish a TAP program using funds through this new program before the end of this federal fiscal year – Sept. 30. There are many options related to establishing a TAP program, so ITD staff will provide more information at the February meeting with the intent of seeking guidance on implementing the new program later.

The myriad list of eligible activities for funding includes lighting and other safety related infrastructure, reduction of vehicle-related wildlife mortality, compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, environmental mitigation, sidewalks, vegetation management, bicycle infrastructure, traffic calming, historic preservation and rehabilitation, and recreational trails.

A breakdown of Idaho’s $5.4 million TAP funds includes $1.7 million for recreational trails; $1.85 million available at the board’s discretion; and approximately $1.8 million that must be sub-allocated based on population, including the $414,000 to the TMA outlined earlier.

The Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation administers the Recreational Trails Program. Approximately $1.7 million TAP funds for recreational trails will be passed on to IDPR for recreational trails and trail-related projects. Parks and Recreation personnel will make a presentation to the board on the background of the program, its history and an overview of the administration.

Published 2-15-13