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16 CHAPTER FOUR CASE STUDIES Five case studies are presented in this chapter. These case The state of Florida has 11 regional planning councils studies highlight successful coordination efforts between bus (RPCs), commissioned by state law, that provide compre- transit service and land development planning. The case hensive planning and intergovernmental coordination for studies include the Central Florida Regional Transportation managed, responsible growth. Florida state legislation pro- Authority (LYNX) in Orlando, Florida; the Centre Area vides that any development that would have a substantial Transportation Authority (CATA) in State College, Pennsyl- impact on the health, safety, or welfare of citizens in more vania; Omnitrans in San Bernardino, California; Metro Tran- than one county is considered a Development of Regional sit in Minneapolis, Minnesota; and GO Boulder in Boulder, Impact (DRI). The RPC has the lead role for coordinating the Colorado. multi-agency review activities for a proposed DRI within its region. The RPC recommends conditions of approval for Potential case study areas were initially chosen based on DRIs or it recommends denial of DRIs to the local govern- the agencies' response to the survey and recommendations ment. The RPC process enables transit agencies to participate from the topic panel. The agencies were interviewed by early in the review process for large developments. telephone to verify information provided in the survey response and to determine their willingness to participate as Successful Projects a case study. Subsequent telephone interviews were con- ducted with the transit agency and other stakeholders, such Altamonte Springs as the local government entity, regional planning organiza- tion, local community organization, and developers. Altamonte Springs is located north of Orlando along I-4. In 1986, the business community of Altamonte Springs wanted Each case study includes a description of projects that to invigorate its business environment by creating a central successfully coordinated bus transit service with a new business district and attracting more businesses to the area. development. The strategies that contributed to the success To accomplish their goals, a Community Redevelopment of the projects are also discussed. Table 5 shows the primary Agency (CRA) was established for the Altamonte Springs strategies that assisted in each agency's success. downtown area, which is approximately 1,400 acres. The CRA is the city's economic development agency and an CENTRAL FLORIDA REGIONAL independent authority under Florida law. The city of Alta- TRANSPORTATION AUTHORITY monte Springs and the CRA, as the developer, applied to the RPC for approval as a DRI. The purpose of this action was LYNX was founded in May 1972 as the OrangeSeminole to focus development on the creation of a central business Osceola Transportation Authority and has been doing busi- district and provide an alternative to the strip development ness as "LYNX" since 1992. The agency, headquartered in pattern that currently existed. The DRI and CRA together Orlando, Florida, became the Central Florida Regional allow the city to more directly partner with the private sector Transportation Authority in March 1994. than traditional regulatory agencies typically can. Individual developments within the CRA boundary do not have to apply The LYNX service area is approximately 2,500 square individually as DRIs if they are in conformance with the miles and serves 3 counties (Orange, Osceola, and Semi- CRA plan. nole) and 29 municipalities. LYNX provides a number of services in addition to fixed-route service including In 1987, a traffic impact study conducted for the I-4 cor- LYMMO, a free downtown Orlando circulator; LYNX ridor concluded that road congestion in Altamonte Springs carpool and vanpool services; ACCESS LYNX, a door-to- and the surrounding area would continue to get worse. Faced door paratransit service; and Road Rangers, a roadside with this conclusion, the city of Altamonte Springs and its assistance program on Interstate Highway 4 (I-4). LYNX neighboring communities began searching for a solution to also provides one express service to Volusia County, future congestion. One of the proposed solutions is Flex Bus, which is a contiguous county to the northeast of the a new transit system now in final design. current service area. LYNX delivers more than 80,000 rides each weekday to a resident population of more than Flex Bus represents a new concept in bus service. It will 1.8 million. combine the advantages of dedicated bus lanes, Intelligent
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17 TABLE 5 MATRIX OF SUCCESSFUL STRATEGIES IN CASE STUDIES Metro LYNX CATA Omnitrans Transit GO Boulder Legislative Framework X X X Zoning/Open Space X Supportive Local X X X Officials/Champion Municipal Financial X X Support Communications and X X X X X Coordination Staff Technical X X X Knowledge and Negotiation Skills Transportation Systems (ITS) technology, route deviation, enhance the quality of life in the downtown area, reduce traf- and demand-response systems to deliver fast, economical, fic congestion, and encourage additional growth in the down- and convenient bus service to the community. Flex Bus will town core. Florida state growth management regulations operate in dedicated lanes serving predefined primary bus stipulate that new development is permitted only when the stops. Secondary predefined bus stops located away from the infrastructure can support new growth. To expand develop- dedicated bus lane will be served on request. Flex Bus cus- ment in the downtown area, the state required the provision tomers will have the ability to schedule a trip on the Internet of a downtown transit system. or by phone. The reserved trip is guaranteed to arrive within 12 min of the request. ITS technology will be used for vehi- To accomplish its goals, the city created a special taxing cle monitoring, scheduling, and vehicle dispatching. district for the downtown area administered by a Down- town Development Board (DDB). The purpose of the DDB Developers in Altamonte Springs have promised ease- is to encourage redevelopment, and tax monies are used for ments for the Flex Bus exclusive right-of-way and space for planning and programming. The DDB and the city of shelters, as well as lobby space for Flex Bus reservation Orlando then worked together to create a downtown Com- kiosks. Completion of the project is expected in 2009 and, munity Redevelopment Area that allows for the capture of to date, 21 developers have contributed to the project. Future future tax increments to be used for redevelopment projects developments in Altamonte Springs will provide similar and infrastructure improvements. With the formation of provisions for Flex Bus. these two organizations, the city proceeded with plans to improve downtown transit. Throughout the 1980s the city experimented with two transit circulators. These experi- LYMMO ments and a public development process produced the LYMMO concept in 1994. The stated goal of LYMMO was LYMMO is a free circulator in downtown Orlando (see to help the downtown populace and out-of-town visitors Figure 4). The impetus for the project was the city's desire to park their cars once and then use transit to access downtown destinations. LYMMO began operations in 1997 and has been a suc- cess. It is designed to elicit a fun, whimsical transit expe- rience. The Orlando Museum of Art developed an initial "Moveum of Art" promotional campaign that decorated LYMMO buses as moving works of art. To operate smoothly and reliably, it operates within dedicated bus lanes and takes advantage of ITS technology such as sig- nal priority. LYMMO operates on 5-min headways during rush periods and 10-min headways at other times. Elec- tronic kiosks at each stop show passengers the location of the next LYMMO bus on the 3-mi right-of-way. The ser- FIGURE 4 LYNX LYMMO service. (Courtesy: LYNX Central vice is operated by LYNX using ten 30-passenger, low- Florida Transportation Authority.) floor, compressed natural gas buses. The free service is