11 Staff Report
Council Agendas and Reports
11 Staff Report
2/4/2020 3:59:28 PM
2/4/2020 3:44:06 PM
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PAGE 2 OF 3 <br />SUBJECT: Receive a Report on How Vehicle Miles Travelled and Level of Service Analysis <br />Will Work Together in Shaping Future Development Projects <br />DATE: January 13, 2020 <br /> <br /> <br /> <br />DISCUSSION (continued): <br /> <br />Historically, the CEQA analysis related to transportation has focused on LOS at intersections. <br />More specifically, this has been the measure of intersection performance in terms of delay, <br />with intersections receiving a rating from A to F. Specific t hresholds, based on increases in <br />delay at intersections, would trigger required mitigations. The practical result has been project <br />conditions that require changes to the roadway system to mitigate the measured increase in <br />delay. This often leads to changes in roadway architecture, such as the addition of travel lanes, <br />to help the intersections perform better for vehicles. <br /> <br />VMT takes a different approach and, from a bigger picture view, looks at changes that can be <br />made to a project (versus the previous method of making changes to the roadway network) to <br />reduce impacts to the transportation network. VMT is an origin-based (project) approach <br />whereas LOS has been a recipient (roadways) based approach. A simple example is the <br />issuance of transit passes to residents or employees on a developing property. By issuing <br />transit passes, a measurable reduction in VMT can be made. Many of these elements of VMT, <br />including which measures to implement and what level of reduction is enough will be topics of <br />discussion and decision making for the Council in the coming months. <br /> <br />However, the Town will still need a way to manage local roads and their functionality for all <br />users (including vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, and others). The VMT measure does not <br />provide a means to do this – VMT measures how far vehicles will travel, but not which <br />intersections or which roads they will use or where they may create local congestion . For this <br />reason, a transportation analysis will continue to be necessary in the future. <br /> <br />In the short term, staff recommends maintaining the current transportation analysis as <br />identified in the Town’s Traffic Impact Policy. This will allow for a continued focus on <br />implementing VMT by the July deadline. Subsequently, the Council may want to look at policy <br />changes with respect to traffic analysis to include a stress analysis for pedestrians and bicyclists, <br />as well as the functionality analysis for vehicles. A stress analysis is a measure of how <br />comfortable a roadway is for users of varying age, skills, and abilities. By expanding the <br />transportation analysis, roadways are modified to the benefit of all users. <br /> <br />CONCLUSION: <br /> <br />Staff is introducing this discussion early as some perceptions may exist that VMT will fully <br />replace the analysis of local streets and roads, staff wanted to avoid any confusion in future <br />discussions. Staff believes that ongoing transportation analysis on local roadway performance <br />will need to continue outside of the CEQA VMT analysis, with an expansion of the current LOS <br />analysis to meet the needs of all users.
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