April 27, 2015                                                                       Volume 5, Issue 4

Vibrant NEO 2040 receives national planning award


Vibrant NEO 2040, the regional vision framework coordinated by the 33-member Northeast Ohio Sustainable Communities Consortium (NEOSCC), has received the American Planning Association's (APA) Daniel Burnham Award for a Comprehensive Plan. NOACA Executive Director and NEOSCC board chair Grace Gallucci and NEOSCC Executive Director Hunter Morrison accepted the award last week at the APA's National Planning Conference in Seattle, Washington.  


The plan, funded by a $4.25 million U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) grant and developed over three years, relied heavily on input from the region's citizens and stakeholders to determine a future that people could envision and endorse. Vibrant NEO 2040 summarizes northeast Ohio's current land use, transportation, environment, housing and economic development situation and explores alternative future scenarios that compare forecast outcomes for the region based on different potential trends in policy and population growth. The Daniel Burnham Award, named for one of the planning profession's most renowned urban planners, is presented annually to a plan that advances the art and science of planning by creating communities of lasting value.


Participate in Air Quality Awareness Week    


April 27 - May 1, 2015 is Air Quality Awareness Week. NOACA encourages you to be proactive in reducing air pollution, improving air quality and improving personal and public health. You can improve the region's air by reducing the number of trips you drive in your car. Use public transit, carpool, telecommute, bicycle or walk to work and for errands. Choosing not to drive helps reduce the amount of vehicle emissions that create pollution, lower air quality and degrade everyone's health. Bicycling or walking also provides the health benefits of exercise. If you must use your car, avoid unnecessary idling and delay refueling your vehicle until after dark. For more information about how you can support Air Quality Awareness Week, see the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's website.



NOACA accepting applications for TLCI implementation grants  


NOACA is accepting applications for projects in its five-county area seeking Transportation for Livable Communities Initiative (TLCI) implementation grant funding. Building on the success of its TLCI planning grant program, the NOACA Board recently adopted a policy that splits the annual TLCI funding allocation between planning grants for new studies and implementation grants to fund projects recommended from completed TLCI studies. A goal of the implementation grant program is to help communities fund projects recommended in planning studies. Examples of eligible projects include transit waiting environments, bicycle parking, striping for bicycle lanes, pedestrian crosswalks and comprehensive wayfinding programs.


Find the TLCI implementation grant application and instructions on NOACA's website under the Funding tab. Applications are due May 8.


Plans proceed on study for Cleveland multimodal transportation facility


The NOACA Board of Directors recently voted to commit $120,000 for planning a multimodal transportation facility south of the Shoreway and east of East Ninth Street in Cleveland. The
study, sponsored by the City of Cleveland, Greater Cleveland RTA, Greyhound, and Amtrak, will evaluate the feasibility, cost and options for a new facility that could potentially accommodate taxi service, RTA bus and trolley operations, commuter rail, relocated Greyhound bus operations, bike-sharing infrastructure and other public and private transportation services. If implemented, sponsors anticipate the project will consolidate many transportation services and improve intercity transportation. 


May is Cleveland Bike Month


May is Cleveland Bike Month and a celebration of all things bicycle-related. From May 1 -31, you can find a bike-themed event, ride, cycling clinic or repair clinic every day of the month-check   out Bike Cleveland's calendar to see what is going on each day.


Ride your bike to work on Friday, May 15, and join one of two Bike to Work celebrations at 7 a.m.: at The Bike Rack, 2148 East 4th Street, or University East Plaza, 11330 Euclid Avenue (University Circle). Enjoy camaraderie with other cyclists, have breakfast, and learn how to use RTA's bicycle racks. May Bike to Work Day is the first of the season, but you can participate in additional Bike to Work Days designated for June through October.


NOACA seeks volunteers for bicycle and pedestrian counts in May


NOACA is looking for volunteers to take bicycle and pedestrian counts in Geauga, Lake, Lorain and Medina counties on May 12-14 between 5 - 7 p.m. Volunteers will count passing bicyclists and pedestrians at specific road and/or trail intersections in these counties. NOACA will provide the materials necessary to conduct the counts, but participants must obtain their own transportation to the count location. NOACA will reimburse travel costs to and from the count location.


All volunteers will receive a $25 gift card to the northeast Ohio bicycle/athletic shop of their choice, but volunteers who count two sessions or more will receive a $45 gift card. Bicycle counts help planners gauge which roads and trails get the most use and help prioritize funding for new bicycle and pedestrian projects. If you are interested in volunteering for this important data-gathering activity, sign up via a survey on NOACA's website.


Attend free webinar on agency leadership and pedestrian safety


The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is hosting a free webinar on Tuesday, May 5, from 1 - 2:30 p.m., that focuses on how state, local, and regional agencies have raised the profile of pedestrian safety issues and initiated programs to prioritize pedestrian safety. The webinar will concentrate on what agencies have done to shift their priorities and influence agency culture, including information about programs and policies that have resulted from this culture change. The webinar is part of FHWA's Pedestrian Focus States and Cities Initiative. FHWA's Safety Office is trying aggressively to reduce pedestrian deaths by focusing extra resources on the states and cities with the highest pedestrian fatalities and/or fatality rates. Register for the webinar via an online form. 


You are also invited to join NOACA on Wednesday, May 20, at 3 p.m. at NOACA's office to view the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals' monthly webinar series. May's topic is Law Enforcement Strategies to Improve Pedestrian & Bicyclist Safety. Attend the webinar and you can earn training credits that may meet your professional accreditation requirements. Contact Active Transportation Engineer Melissa Thompson if you would like to attend.


Attend a public meeting about the Eastside Greenway


The Cuyahoga County Planning Commission and LAND Studio invite the public to comment on final plans for the Eastside Greenway at one of four public meetings scheduled in May. The Eastside Greenway project seeks to connect the eastern portion of Cleveland with 18 suburbs via a bicycle/pedestrian trail network that will link neighborhoods with employment centers, transit and green spaces. Individual trails are currently in place, and linking them together would close gaps in community connections, provide safe alternative means of transportation, and decrease the need for motorized travel. The final plan was developed from input collected at two previous public meetings and will be presented for additional comment at the May meetings.

Grace Gallucci, Executive Director
1299 Superior Avenue | 216.241.2414, ext. 100

Website: www.noaca.org