Central West Steering Committee Meeting Summary – July 22, 2013

For more information about the July 22nd Central West Steering Committee meeting, please see below!

Central West Focus Area
July 22, 2013 Steering Committee Meeting
Co-Chair Summary

By: Michael Parker and Amy Ryan, Co-Chairs, Central West Steering Committee

The Central West Steering Committee met on July 22 at the Chapel Hill Public Library from 6:00 – 9:00 PM. Copies of all meeting materials can be found at http://www.townofchapelhill.org/centralwest
All formal agreements of the Committee reflect the affirmative vote of at least 2/3 of the members present.

Agenda Items

1. Opening Remarks: Megan Wooley began by sharing the goals for the meeting. She noted that Matt Sullivan from the Chapel Hill Police Department would be filling in for Loryn Clark, who was not able to attend the meeting.

Julie McClintock moved that the discussion of Principle 13 be shifted earlier in the agenda to follow Todd LoFrese’s presentation, so that the committee would be certain of having time to discuss it. The motion failed by a vote of 4 to 8.

Firoz Mistry moved that the committee permanently extend its second public comment period to 10 minutes. This measure was passed by general agreement.

2. Community Participation: Megan Wooley began by saying she had a request from community member Erin Langston to have Megan to read her comments to the group, since Erin was unable to attend. The committee discussed this request and decided by general agreement that it could not be accommodated, citing concerns about setting a precedent that might lead to having multiple such requests at a single meeting. It was noted that Megan forwards all written communications to the committee and that this practice allows people who cannot attend to express their thoughts directly to the committee members.

Several individuals from the community than shared comments/opinions with the group.

3. Comments from Todd LoFrese: The assistant superintendent for support services with Chapel Hill–Carrboro City Schools spoke about the school board’s safety goals, plans that will soon be proposed for upcoming capital projects that will improve traffic circulation and student safety, and the statistics for how Estes and Phillips students go to school. A question and answer session with the committee followed.

4. Transportation Overview: David Bonk, the Chapel Hill long range and transportation planning manager, gave a presentation on the existing transportation conditions in the Central West area, showed three possible road profiles for Estes Drive that would incorporate improved bike/ped facilities, and led the group through a sample exercise that showed how a trip generation analysis was conducted. He shared data from a rough estimate of trip generation from two of Rhodeside and Harwell’s June 4 concept plans—one at lower density with more residential (option 1 less 25%) and one at a higher density with more commercial (option 3). He noted that it was not possible to draw definitive conclusions from these initial estimates. Specific land use plans—along with possible internal circulation solutions—will be needed before the impacts on Estes Drive and MLK Boulevard can be ascertained.

Brian Litchfield, Chapel Hill Transit’s interim director, gave a short presentation about the planned transit alternatives analysis that will be conducted along the route that stretches from the Eubanks park and ride south along MLK and then through town to the Southern Village park and ride.

A question and answer period followed the transportation and transit presentations. The group decided by general agreement to extend the Q/A period to take up the time allotted for agenda item 5, Transportation Discussion, and that decisions on bike/ped facilities and road profiles scheduled for that time would be deferred to the committee’s next meeting.

5. Principle 13: The text for the proposed new principle 13 that had been developed by the Principles and Objectives Subcommittee was presented for discussion. The committee debated at some length whether “assess” was the correct word or if “consider” would be preferable. They voted unanimously to accept number 13 in principle, with the understanding that final wordsmithing would be conducted at a later date—most likely on August 27, when all principles and objectives will be reviewed.

6. Community Comment: The meeting concluded with comments from several community members.

Thanks to everyone who attended for your continued hard work and interest in the Central West process.

The next Central West Steering Committee meeting will be on today, Tuesday, July 30th from 6:00-9:00pm in Meeting Room B at the Chapel Hill Public Library, 100 Library Drive.

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