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The RRPDC is a regional planning agency serving
the Town of Ashland;
the City of Richmond; and
the counties of Charles City, Chesterfield, Goochland, Hanover, Henrico, New Kent, and Powhatan.



Richmond Regional
Planning District Commission

9211 Forest Hill Avenue
Suite 200
Richmond, VA 23235

Directions to RRPDC


Phone:  804.323.2033
Fax:  804.323.2025


Office Hours:
Monday - Friday
8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.



 

 

 

Monthly PDC/MPO Meeting Report Flyer (PDF)

Legislative Agenda Planning Begins


Communications Coordinator Chuck Gates presented the RRPDC Board with copies of the 2010 RRPDC Legislative Summary and outlined various pieces of legislation passed in the 2010 General Assembly session that impacted the interests of the Richmond Region.

The booklet summarizes legislation that relates to the work and missions of the RRPDC, RAMPO, and the Capital Region Collaborative.

Mr. Gates expressed gratitude for the legislators who passed bills included in the 2010 RRPDC Legislative Agenda,  especially Senator John Watkins and Delegate Rosalyn Dance for their bills delaying the implementation of forthcoming stormwater regulations.

Mr. Gates outlined plans to begin the process of creating the 2011 RRPDC Legislative Agenda and called for initial thoughts on what new items may be suggested.

These included:

  • opposition to federal mandates of collective bargaining for public safety officials,
  • transportation funding options,
  • land-use authority, and
  • cash proffers.

Further suggestions may be sent to Mr. Gates or to the appropriate local representative to the Large and Small Jurisdictions Committees, which will begin drafting the document this month.

Capital Region Collaborative Continues Progress


Executive Director Bob Crum provided the RRPDC Board with an update on the public participation process of the Capital Region Collaborative (CRC). Mr. Crum and Kim Scheeler, the President and CEO of the Greater Richmond Chamber of Commerce, have been speaking at public meetings to introduce the CRC’s Strawman Draft of Regional Priorities to the public.

Strawman Presentation Meetings held (as of July 8, 2010):

  • Leadership Metro Richmond Alumni
  • Richmond Regional Planning District Commission
  • Management Roundtable
  • Vision Check at Central Virginia Foodbank
  • New Kent County Board of Supervisors
  • Richmond City Council
  • Town of Ashland
  • Greater Richmond Chamber Board
  • Charles City County Board of Supervisors
  • Former Chairs of the GRCC

Strawman Presentation Meetings scheduled (as of July 8, 2010):

  • Hunton Williams – 7/21
  • Henrico County – 7/27
  • Hanover County – 7/28
  • Powhatan County – 8/5
  • Chesterfield County – 8/25
  • Goochland County – 9/7
  • InVision Richmond – 8/12
  • InVision Henrico – 9/1
  • LMR Class Orientation – 9/10 & 9/11
  • InVision Chesterfield – 9/21
  • Better Housing Coalition – 9/22
  • InVision Hanover – 9/23
  • GRCC Foundation Board of Directors – 10/20

Strawman Presentation Meetings being scheduled:

  • Daily Planet (2 meetings)
  • Richmond Hispanic Office
  • Partnership for Smarter Growth
  • League of Women Voters
  • Richmond Times Dispatch Forum
  • Richmond Hill
  • Inter Faith Council

Stimulus Funds Flexed to Purchase GRTC Buses


The RAMPO Board took action to reallocate $3.12 million in stimulus funds under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) towards the purchase of eight buses for GRTC, or seven buses running on compressed natural gas instead of diesel.

The Board voted to amend the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) so that surplus stimulus funds remaining from the Region’s ARRA projects would be directed to purchasing the buses as part of GRTC’s replacement program. The funds were available after bids on three projects, to which RAMPO previously allocated ARRA funds, came in lower than expected.

The quick action by the RAMPO Board will allow the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) and the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT) to work with the Commonwealth Transportation Board and Governor McDonnell to re-obligate the funds before the September 30 federal deadline.

Purchasing the buses was the second recommendation of RAMPO staff after the initial recommendation to allocate the funds to the preliminary engineering (PE) work on rail projects around Acca Yard was deemed ineligible.  Representatives from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) explained that the ARRA stimulus funds must be part of an entire project, and not just the PE phase. The Acca Yard PE work was not eligible a stand alone ARRA project.

The board also asked FHWA if, in the future, the MPO could re-allocate non-stimulus surplus RSTP funds to rail projects. FHWA said that while existing agreements between FHWA and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) make it easy to fl ex FHWA stimulus funds to FTA projects, a similar agreement is not in place between FHWA and the Federal Rail Administration (FRA).

One MPO member expressed the apparent tension at the table and asked, “What do we have to do to make sure that in the future we can flex highway dollars into rail projects if we, as an MPO, choose to do so?”

Accordingly, the MPO unanimously directed staff to prepare a letter to the U.S. Secretary of Transportation and the Commonwealth’s Secretary of Transportation expressing concern that such an agreement has yet to be established between FHWA and FRA.

Despite the Board’s dismay with the limits on its ability to utilize the surplus funds for rail improvements, the members were pleased to provide replacement buses for the GRTC Transit System.

 

Passenger Rail in the Richmond Region


RRPDC Communications Coordinator Chuck Gates, and Kevin Page, the Chief of Rail for the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT), briefed the RAMPO Board on the current status of the three passenger rail projects in the Richmond Region.

Mr. Gates briefly reviewed the status of the Washington, DC to Richmond Rail Improvements Project before turning to the Tier 2 Draft Environmental Impact Statement of the Richmond to Raleigh portion of the Southeast High Speed Rail Corridor. Mr. Gates urged the RAMPO member jurisdictions and organizations to attend one of the upcoming public hearings.

The presentation culminated with a detailed discussion of the Richmond/Hampton Roads Passenger Rail Project and DRPT’s plans to bypass Main Street Station when the first train to Norfolk begins in 2013. However, Mr. Page assured the Board that the projects along the route through Main Street Station remain a priority of DRPT.

 

 


 


Richmond Regional Planning District Commission | 9211 Forest Hill Avenue | Suite 200
Richmond, VA 23235 | (804) 323-2033

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