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New Starts/Small Starts and BRT: An Update. APTA Bus Conference Seattle, WA May 5, 2009. Topics. Overview of the New Starts/Small Starts Program Small Starts Project Planning & Development Small Starts Evaluation and Funding BRT in Small Starts (and New Starts).

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new starts small starts and brt an update

New Starts/Small Starts and BRT:An Update

APTA Bus Conference

Seattle, WA

May 5, 2009

topics
Topics
  • Overview of the New Starts/Small Starts Program
  • Small Starts Project Planning & Development
  • Small Starts Evaluation and Funding
  • BRT in Small Starts (and New Starts)
new starts small starts funding supply and demand
New Starts/Small Starts Funding: Supply and Demand
  • Demand:
    • 14 New Starts projects in PE and Final Design
    • 21 Small Starts projects in PD
    • Total cost of pipeline: ~$25 billion, $10 billion in New Starts funding
    • FTA tracking >100 planning studies considering major transit capital investments
  • Annual funding
    • New Starts: $1.6+ billion
    • Small Starts: $200 million
eligibility small starts
Eligibility: Small Starts
  • Cost criteria
    • Total cost <$250 million
    • Small Starts share < $75 million
  • Scope criteria
    • Project has a fixed guideway for 50 percent or more of its length during peak periods, or
    • Non-fixed guideway project in a corridor including at least three of the following:
      • Significant transit stations
      • Traffic signal priority or pre-emption
      • Low floor buses or level boarding
      • Premium service branding
    • No longer require all four project elements

“Exempt” projects exist only until a new rule is published

eligibility very small starts
Eligibility: Very Small Starts
  • Small Starts criteria for cost and scope
  • Plus additional eligibility criteria:
    • Total cost under $50 million
    • Cost per mile < $3 million per mile, excluding rolling stock
    • (Existing weekday riders over 3,000)
small starts very small starts eligible applicants
Small Starts/Very Small StartsEligible Applicants
  • Any public body is eligible to apply for Small Starts funds
  • If the applicant is not the operator:
    • The small starts application must demonstrate how the project will be operated and maintained
    • Project sponsor must provide an executed operating agreement before a PCGA can be finalized
small starts very small starts project development
Small Starts/Very Small StartsProject Development
  • Alternatives Analysis
    • Simplified
    • Project Justification based on Warrants for Very Small Starts
  • Project Development
  • Project Construction Grant Agreement
what is a project construction grant agreement pcga
What is a Project Construction Grant Agreement (PCGA)?
  • Formal Agreement signed by FTA and Grantee following detailed review by DOT, OMB and Congress
  • Agreement on Project Scope, Budget, and Schedule
  • Terms and Conditions of Federal Participation
  • Multi-year Funding Commitment (subject to Congressional Appropriations)
  • Caps Federal Section 5309 Small Starts funds
project construction grant agreement
Project Construction Grant Agreement
  • To receive a PCGA a project must:
    • Be Authorized in Law
    • Complete the Planning, Project Development, and NEPA Processes
    • Meet Project Readiness Requirements (technical capacity, firm and final cost estimate and funding)
    • Receive a “Medium” or higher overall rating
    • Receive a “Medium” or higher cost effectiveness rating
    • Meet all other Federal requirements
  • Execution of the PCGA will be subject to a 60 day congressional review
slide10

FTA Ratings: Small Starts

Summary Rating

Project Justification

Rating

Financial Rating

Other

Factors

Cost

Effectiveness

Non-Section

5309 Share

Capital

Finances

Land

Use

Operating

Finances

Capital

Cost

O&M

Cost

User

Benefits

Minimum Project Development Requirements:

NEPA Approvals

Metropolitan Planning and Programming Requirements

Project Management Technical Capability

Other Considerations

fta ratings small starts
FTA Ratings: Small Starts
  • Existing New Starts framework
  • Simplifications
    • Fewer criteria
    • Simpler evaluation measures for land use criterion
    • Opening year forecasts only
    • Simpler travel forecasting procedures possible
    • Simpler financial documentation possible
fta ratings small starts continued
FTA Ratings: Small Starts (continued)
  • Simpler financial documentation possible
    • Rating of “medium” for local financial commitment if:
      • Reasonable plan to secure local share (all non-New Starts funding committed for PCGA)
      • Project O&M under 5 percent of agency operating budget
      • Agency in solid financial condition
    • Projects that cannot meet these conditions submit a financial plan
      • According to FTA guidance
      • Covering period up to and including opening year
      • Evaluated based on criteria used for New Starts
slide13

FTA Ratings: Very Small Starts

Summary Rating

Project Justification

Rating

Financial Rating

Other

Factors

Cost

Effectiveness

Non-Section

5309 Share

Capital

Finances

Land

Use

Operating

Finances

Capital

Cost

Benefiting

Riders

Minimum Project Development Requirements:

NEPA Approvals

Metropolitan Planning and Programming Requirements

Project Management Technical Capability

Other Considerations

fta ratings very small starts
FTA Ratings: Very Small Starts
  • Existing New Starts framework
  • Simplifications
    • Fewer criteria
    • “Warrants” approach for project justification
      • Benefiting riders > 3,000/day
      • Capital cost (excl. vehicles) < $3M/mi.
      • Total capital cost < $50M
    • Simpler financial documentation possible (as with Small Starts)

Demonstrate consistency with characteristics of “justified” projects

summary ratings
Summary Ratings

Summary Rating

  • Rating categories:
    • High
    • Medium-high
    • Medium
    • Medium-low
    • Low
  • Decision Rule:
    • Must have at least “Medium” on both justification and finance to receive “Medium” overall

Project Justification

Rating (50%)

Local Financial

Commitment Rating

(50%)

brt s in new starts and small starts
BRT’s in New Starts and Small Starts
  • One PCGA (Eugene)
  • One in NS Final Design (Hartford)
  • One in NS PE (Boston Silver Line)
  • 18 in Project Development
    • Austin
    • Federal Way/Seattle, WA
    • Flagstaff
    • Fort Collins
    • Grand Rapids
    • Kansas City Troost
    • King County/Belleview-Redmond
    • Livermore/Amador Valley
    • Los Angeles Gap Closure
    • Los Angeles Wilshire
    • Monterey, CA
    • New York Nostrand Avenue
    • Oakland, CA East Bay
    • Roaring Fork Valley, CO
    • San Bernardino Omnitrans
    • San Diego Mid City Rapid
    • San Francisco Van Ness
    • Stockton, CA Metro Express Airport Way Connector
project ratings and decisionmaking
Project Ratings and Decisionmaking
  • Ratings guide FTA approvals of PE/PD, Final Design, and FFGA/PCGAs
  • “Medium” or better overall rating required to advance
  • Once in PE/PD, rating reported each year in Annual Report on Funding Recommendations
conclusion
Conclusion

QUESTIONS?