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03-21-2002 LAS CRUCES AREA TRANSIT (RoadRUNNER) TRANSIT ADVISORTY BOARD MEETING OF MARCH 21, 2002 A meeting of the Transit Advisory Board (TAB) was held on March 21, 2002 at Conference Room 214, City Office Center, 575 South Alameda, Las Cruces, New Mexico. Members Present: Charles Harvey, Jonah Garcia, Chris Ray, Jesus Frietze, and Catherine Peterson. Members Absent: Mike Elrod and Mike Baumann. Others Present: Ken Miyagashima, City Councilor; Louis Roman, Public Services Director; Mike Bartholomew, Transit Administrator, Dale Kemp, Transit Analyst, Lisa Fuselier, MPO Planner, and Kim Hartley, Bulletin (newspaper) Reporter. CALL TO ORDER Mr. Harvey, Chairman, call the meeting to order. A quorum was present for the meeting. It was noted that a Recording Secretary was not present and that Dale Kemp, Transit Analyst, would be doing the recording for a summary of minutes for the meeting. REVIEW AND APPROVAL OF MINUTES The Minutes of the January 24, 2002, were approved during the meeting. OPERATIONS UPDATE The main agenda of this meeting was to allow Mike Bartholomew, Transit Administrator, to provide the TAB an overview of his observations during his first two months as Administrator and to report on the current Transit activities and projects. • Job Access and Reverse Commute Plan: (Welfare to Work Program) We are working on the plan and have had meetings with the South Central Council of Governments, Paul Lucero, State Human Services Department, and Liz Carter, NMSHTD Public Transportation Bureau. The plan being developed will continue our partnership with New Mexico Works. We are interested in contract service for after the normal operating hours service or all of the service. We will continue to work with New Mexico Works to provide monthly bus passed for fixed route service. We will be following up and meeting with Ben Archer and Safe Ride concerning the opportunity of them providing the Welfare to Work Program transportation needs. • Route realignment: We have started getting drivers, both fixed route and demand response, input. We will need to address the immediate issues such as Route 9. Route 9 travels from the mall up Triviz on to the Elks Club and Four Hills area and on up to the Highway 70 east Transit Advisory Board—Minutes of 03/21/02 1 mesa area. However, the major development is on the other side of the freeway in the Telshor area and we are getting several requests for service in that area as well as the Roadrunner Parkway area that must be addressed. Another issue is that in the Short Term Transit Plan that was done last Spring, one of the goals was to desire routes that are 30 minutes long. Currently the routes are 40 minutes long. In reviewing the proposed routes in the study, the routes are just not going to be able to be made on a 30 minutes schedule. Therefore, we will be looking at the 30 minute versus the 40 minute route schedule. We will be looking at the costs involved for route realignment in developing a proposal to present to the public and council. Realistically, to stay within the budget we have, it is going to be really tough to do anything other than the 40 minute schedule. We will just have to look at what we can do and the costs and present the options for consideration. • Bike Racks: The bid is in so that, all buses will have bike racks. Currently only three buses have bike racks and we hope to have all them installed on all the buses by mid May. During the meeting there was general discussion concerning the space required to park the buses with the bike racks at the current transfer center. This has been checked and no problems are expected. There will not be any special training required for those customers using the bike rack. The driver will be able to teach the customer how to safely us the bike racks. • Dial-a-Ride: The heavy use by the school system for school functions has become a major problem. It is to the point that if it did not stop (for example last week we were doing 50-55 hours of school service) we are at a point of almost providing charter service. We are providing a service that the school system should be providing so effective last week we have stopped providing the special service. • Intermodal Study: We have an approved grant for an intermodal study that has not been used due to the fact that nothing has been done regarding an intermodal transportation center. We have received a 1.9 million FTA grant for a transportation center. Therefore we will be completing a Request for Proposal for the intermodal study. The question and discussion concerning weather or not this study had already been completed, determined that there had only been discussion but no study was ever done. Both grants are 80% FTA funded. • Budget---Vehicles: In this current budget year we will purchase one administrative vehicle and two demand response vans. In next years budget we will purchase three fixed route buses and 3 demand response vans. The FTA grant funding will be 83% of the cost. • General Information: Mr. Bartholomew gave a brief over view of his plans. Training is a priority; in fact after meeting with the drivers they are really interested in training. We have already brought in outside trainers for the Dial-a-Ride scheduling system to train not only the supervisors and schedulers, but other Transit employees as well. Mr. Bartholomew will attend a FTA grants management seminar as recommended by the Regional Office. He will also check into FTA sponsored training for the TAB members. Mr. Kemp emphasized to the TAB how Transit is working with the for and how Transit must and is following the required planning process. Mr. Kemp gave an overview of the current budget being presented to council and the fact that Transit is looking at funding opportunities to put Transit in a better budget position. • TAB Feedback: Ms. Peterson expressed concern about the maintenance of the Dial-a-Ride vehicles. (The AC and lifts were the two major concerns.) There was general discussion Transit Advisory Board-Minutes of 03/21/02 2 concerning the transit maintenance program. Mr. Bartholomew explained that this was a priority with him and outlined the open communications and follow up procedures that he has developed to insure we have a top notch maintenance program. There was general discussion and feedback from Mr. Ray concerning the bike racks on the Aggie Shuttle bus. Mr. Ray stated that he was aware that the Aggie Shuttle had a bike rack and had heard few comments from the students. Mr. Bartholomew pointed out that the Aggie Shuttle was the pilot route and promotion of the bike racks would not begin until all the buses were fitted with the bike racks. Councilor Miyagashima led a discussion concerning the route realignments and the possible use of the grid system or dividing the City into three different hubs. Mr. Bartholomew explained that the grid system works better in a high density situation and does add operational costs. Also having three hubs could increase the number of transfers for customers to get to their destination and increase their travel time. Mr. Bartholomew stated that the recommendation would be included in the development process for the route realignments. The question concerning customer surveys was discussed to determine what they wanted. (Customer surveys were part of the short range study with the time of travel being the most serious concern.) The TAB asked about the Summer Fun Pass. It was explained that the Summer Fun Pass Program would continue this summer and that Transit was working with the City Recreation Centers, Branigan Library, NMSU, Las Cruces Public Schools, and other City wide summer programs. The pass is provided to youth at no cost. Transit does attempt to get a sponsor to pay for the program. The cost of the program is minimal. This is the most popular program that Transit has and the increased ridership does carry over during the school year. There was general discussion of offering free days to introduce more citizens to Transit. ADJOURNMENT The meeting adjourned at 4:50 p.m. Prepared by: Approved by: a Daie Kemp, Transit An �. Charles A )C— Date: arles Harvey, Chairman Date: Transit Advisory Board—Minutes of 03/21/02 • ~ ' (SO, LAS CRUCES AREA TRANSIT ADVISORY BOARD MEETING NOTICE & AGENDA A meeting of the Transit Advisory Board will be held on Thursday, March 21, 2002, 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. The meeting will be held at Conference Room 214, City Office Center, 575 South Alameda, Las Cruces, New Mexico. I. Call to Order and Roll Call II. Review and Approval of Minutes of January 24, 2002 III. Operations Update IV. Adjournment If you need an accommodation for a disability to enable you to fully participate in this meeting, please contact us 48 hours before the meeting at 541-2500/Voice or 541-2541/TTY. AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER P.O. Box 20000 LAS CRUCES, NEW MEXICO 88004-9002 Phone(505)541-2000