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On September 1, 2011 the Community Working Group (CWG) convened for the second time. The meeting was well attended with the participation of representatives from several community organizations, local stakeholders, businesses, elected officials and City agencies.
Key information shared through the presentation included an overview of the planning and related analysis processes and the project timeline. Group members were very interested in the methodology being used by the Interagency Team to determine what options for the Sheridan Expressway and related road network are feasible and what the costs and benefits of each option are. Lastly, the presentation turned to the upcoming public planning workshop or charrette.
The purpose of the meeting was to provide an overview of the land use and transportation planning process, an update of project activities and to discuss the upcoming charrette.
The Interagency Team conducted a presentation and question and answer session before small group discussion began.
Small Group Discussion
The Community Working Group was asked to break into groups. Groups were asked to reflect on proposed improvements and/or changes to the Sheridan and Bruckner Expressways. These proposals included maintaining the Sheridan Expressway in its current configuration, reimagining the Sheridan as a boulevard or removing the roadway completely. Participants the identified what pieces of information, data, visuals or other materials would make the scenarios more tangible and understandable.
Community Working Group members provided substantive feedback asked – questions and suggested strategies for making the public charrette successful.
These questions and suggestions fell into three major categories:
Provide pertinent background information
- What are current issues in the study area?
- Which are the “worst” intersections in the study area?
- What improvements are needed to relieve existing bottlenecks
- How does this process relate to the SDOT process?
- What are housing conditions and trends in the study area?
- Are there planned transportation improvements in the study area? Will this project impact those improvements?
- How are existing community plans being incorporated in the current process?
- What improvements/changes to the road network are a part of baseline assumptions?
- Create a Glossary of Terms and Acronyms
Supply Meaningful Data and Information
- Cost/Benefits for each scenario
- Traffic modeling that shows how each scenario may cause problems
- Ratio of trucks to cars on the Sheridan
- Pedestrian and cycling networks
- Impacts of Crotona Park East/West Farms Rezoning
- Feasibility of decking over Sheridan
- Current cost of maintaining the Sheridan
- Status of OakPoint ramps
- Feasibility of Bronx River Parkway as an alternative north-south route
- What goals does each transportation scenario meet?
- Job creation data per transportation scenario
- Appropriate mix of uses and densities for future development in the study area
- What are DCP/DOT standards and policies related to the study
Design a dynamic charrette
- Outreach should be done throughout the study area
- Use various media outlets to conduct outreach
- Storyboarding or Illustrating Ideas as people discuss strategies
- Translate all materials
- Make visuals readable and easily understandable
- Emphasize various options for each scenario (for example, modify can mean a variety of things, not just creating a boulevard)
- Create a priority setting exercise
- Build a physical model
The next Community Working Group Meeting will be held in late fall followed by public open houses where draft visions for the project study area will be shared.