Supporting the California Active Transportation Program (ATP) at LA Metro

metro At the April 24th Metro Board meeting, Metro directors will continue discussion on implementing the Active Transportation Program in Los Angeles County.

The Active Transportation Program (ATP) is a new statewide competitive grant program that encourages bicycling and walking, especially for students traveling to school and for residents of disadvantaged communities. ATP resulted from the consolidation of multiple walking and bicycling programs, including Transportation Alternatives (formerly Transportation Enhancements), federal Safe Routes to School program, state Safe Routes to School program and the state Bicycle Transportation Account, with additional funds from the federal Highway Safety Improvement Program. Of these former programs, Metro used to have programming authority for only Transportation Enhancements, which is 53 percent of the total ATP. The new ATP, however, inherits a focus on travel to school and disadvantaged communities from the former Safe Routes to School programs, which were not selection factors in Metro’s previous programming decisions.

The Safe Routes to School National Partnership and Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition continue to engage in this discussion, where this first came up at Metro’s February Board Meeting, and then last week at the Ad Hoc Sustainablity Committee and Planning and Programming Committee.  Please read our comment letter here.

Fundamentally, Metro’s current predicament with ATP is a function of the agency’s over reliance on limited state and federal funding sources for active transportation. Los Angeles County is a self-help county with close to 70% of transportation investments coming from locally generated revenue. These funds are by and large not being leveraged for active transportation and safe routes to school, requiring cities to rely on state and federal grants like ATP for 80 to 90 percent of their walking and bicycling funds.

Over the coming year we hope to see Metro devote greater attention to active transportation planning, project development and finance strategy to ensure that Los Angeles County is better prepared for future ATP cycles, and work in partnership with local jurisdictions to identify needs.

 

 

Schools as the Centers of our Communities – coordinating efforts in Los Angeles County

Isabelle at Rosemont Elementary in Los AngelesIn Los Angeles County, we have been having more and more meetings with partners working in schools.  Many of our partners, particularly community based organizations are working in schools but having a challenging time interfacing with transportation departments and school districts.

We were recently inspired by a meeting with the National Partnership’s Los Angeles based national shared use staffer Mikaela Randolph with a group called People for Parks, who are doing great work with Community School Parks and Urban Greening efforts in LA City and working on shared use issues. We’d like to share their work with interested partners on Tuesday afternoon May 13th at our offices in downtown Los Angeles. We want to share their experience and start a conversation and workgroup on schools and transportation in Los Angeles County.  We hope you’ll join us.

One of the reasons we are especially motivated to do this now is  Metro will kick off a Safe Routes to School County level strategic plan this summer. Let’s come together on May 13 to start to coordinate and sync up efforts.  Please fill out this google form to RSVP and receive meeting details.

 

Gateways Cities Active Transportation Work Group

Gateway Cities RegionIn our work in Los Angeles County we have come to recognize the importance of partnerships and participation with Councils of Governments.  Currently the Gateway Cities Council of Governments is developing a active transportation strategic plan, as a part of its investment of $8.8M into creating a regional transportation plan for the COG.  This effort includes scoping for project lists and needs for safe routes to school, first/last mile and walking and bicycling projects.  In this effort it is critical that stakeholders participate.  The National Partnership and Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition have been working to share information on this effort and want to form a working group to make sure community groups, school districts and all interested partners are looped into this effort. Read more of this post

Support safer school zones and more funding for SRTS – act now!

DSCF6863Senate Bill 1151 needs your support before April 22!

SB-1151 aims to increase safety for schools students in two important ways: 1. by improving driver behavior in school zones with higher penalties for speed limit violations, and 2. by dedicating the additional revenue generated by those higher penalties to school-based safety improvements through the Active Transportation Program.

This important bill comes at a critical time – dedicated Safe Routes to School project funding is only guaranteed for the first three years of the new Active Transportation Program. With the additional revenue that SB 1151 proposes to generate, the state would continue a dedicated source of funding for projects that prioritize the safety of students walking and bicycling to school.

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Riverside County Transportation Commission – Active Transportation Presentation & Workshop

April 9th RCTC - Call for Projects - Active Transportation ProgramPlease Join the Riverside County Transportation Commission’s Workshop on the Call for Projects Requirements for the Active Transportation Program (ATP):

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014 from 1:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

at RCTC – 4080 Lemon Street, Third Floor, Conference Room A, Riverside, CA 92501

Please contact RCTC’s Tanya Love for more information: tlove@rctc.org

Safe Routes to School National Partnership’s ATP resources can be accessed here:  http://saferoutescalifornia.org/srts-atp-funding/

California Transportation Commission – March 2014 Meeting

CTC_logoThe California Transportation Commission (CTC) was established in 1978 by Assembly Bill 402 out of a growing concern for a single, unified California transportation policy. The Commission replaced and assumed the responsibilities of four independent bodies: The California Highway Commission, the State Transportation Board, the State Aeronautics Board, and the California Toll Bridge Authority.

The Safe Routes to School National Partnership regularly attends the CTC board meetings, and will be attending the March 20th Board meeting in Santa Ana as the Commission approves the ATP guidelines and discusses the State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP).  See the comment letter signed by organizations across the state on the STIP here.

LA Metro Releases ExpressLanes Net Toll Revenues Grants for Active Transportation

LA Metro ExpressLanes Tollway Grant 3 mile buffer mapIn October 2013, LA Metro dedicated 40% of the Toll Road Revenue to active transportation projects in their Toll Road Revenue Allocation Plan, which stakeholders and the Los Angeles County Active Transportation Collaborative supported and provided public comments, see blog post and again in  The application for these funds were released earlier this week under the ExpressLanes Net Toll Revenues Re-Investment Grant. Eligible projects will need to provide mobility/sustainability benefits for the I-10 or I-110 corridors.
The application package for the ExpressLanes Net Toll Revenues Re-Investment Grant is available for download: (1) Application, (2) Project Eligibility Guidelines, (3) 3-mile radius map of the I-10 and I-110 corridors.
Project applications are due by May 30, 2014. Please contact Steven Mateer at 213-922-2504, mateers@metro.net or Kathy McCune at 213-922-7241, mccune@metro.net with any questions.

Workshops for applying for these funds are coming up:

I-110 Corridor – Tuesday, March 25, 2014 9:30 AM to 11:30 AM

Council District 8 Constituent Services Center – Community Room

8475 S. Vermont Avenue Los Angeles, CA 90044

I-10 Corridor -Thursday, March 27, 2014 9:30 AM to 11:30 AM

Metro Division 9 Transportation Building

Metro Service Council, 3rd Floor

3449 Santa Anita Ave. El Monte, CA  91731 Read more of this post

Active Transportation Program: An Open Q&A Session with CTC/Caltrans

ATP-WebBanner-600x300

Join April Nitsos, Caltrans Chief, Office of Active Transportation and Special Programs and Mitch Weiss, California Transportation Commission Deputy Director for an open Q&A session on the ATP Call for Projects.
Active Transportation Program: An Open Q&A Session with Caltrans
Thursday, March 27, 2014   |   10:00am – 11:30am PST
REGISTER TODAY!

This session is for Active Transportation Program applicants who Read more of this post

Did you miss anything? Inland Empire ATP and OPR Workshops

Thanks for attending the February 19th workshops in the Inland Empire on the Active Transportation Program (ATP) and Office of Research and Planning Environmental Goals and Policy Report (OPR EGPR). There were over 60 participants at the combined event and much fruitful conversations. Read more of this post

Grantwriting Assistance for ATP proposals in LA County!

LA n Sync, with assistance from the Los Angeles County Active Transportation Collaborative, endeavors to support up to five applications to the Active Transportation Program (ATP) from Los Angeles County with grant writing and other technical assistance to support the submission of competitive applications. Apply by March 18th March 21st to be considered for this great opportunity!

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