Posted by Jeff Mullan, MassDOT Secretary & Chief Executive Officer
When I became Chairman of Massport, I thanked Massport for the role it has played in transportation reform and said that Massport would gain a larger seat at the transportation reform table. I am aware that for many years Massport has participated in a meaningful way in our surface transportation program, including its purchase of roadways that were built as part of the Central Artery/Tunnel Project, its assistance with the Silver Line bus rapid transit line and, of course, the transfer of the Tobin Memorial Bridge to MassDOT. I realize that there are challenges to this issue, but we need to seriously and substantively look at ways Massport can do more.
Today, with Dave Mackey’s help, I am establishing the Airport Ground Access and Surface Transportation Working Group to undertake the following:
1. Document the conditions under which Massport may participate in our surface transportation system and the limits of that participation. This documentation should include a review of Massport’s statutory powers and its status, including a full understanding of Federal revenue use law and Massport’s “grandfathered” status which permits it to spend airport revenue on the seaport;
2. Document the ways that Massport is currently participating in our surface transportation system and the ways Massport benefits from the system; and
3. Present to this Board and to the Board of Directors of MassDOT ideas and proposals pertaining to Massport’s role regarding surface transportation, actions steps that might be taken to increase that participation, the conditions to which these actions might be subject, and potential changes in law, regulation or policy that might be necessary.
Members of the Air-Ground Group are Paul Regan, Executive Director, MBTA Advisory Board; John Affuso, Senior Transactions Counsel, Massport; Lowell Richards, Chief Development Officer, Massport; Betsy Taylor, Director of Finance, Massport; Jonathan Davis, Chief Financial Officer, MBTA; Clinton Bench, Deputy Director, Office of Transportation Planning, MassDOT; and Rachel Bain, Deputy Director for Innovation, Office of Performance Management and Innovation, MassDOT.
Given the importance of this issue to all of us, I encourage the group to reach out to national experts on revenue use law, to retain and rely on staff expertise in our transportation organizations and outside consultant help as necessary, to consult with legislative leaders on their perspectives, to work with our Federal partners in the USDOT who have experience with this issue, to document these issues carefully, and to exhaust as many of the options available to us as is possible.
I have not established a period of time during which the Air-Ground Group is to exist but have asked that its first meeting be held not later than August 3, 2011. I have asked the group to file its first report with me, David Mackey, Richard Davey, General Manager of the MBTA, the MassDOT Board, and the Massport Board not later than 60 days from today.
Fall River Route 79 Project: Ramp Closures May 28 posted on May 26
MassDOT will close the on-ramps to I-195 east and westbound from Route 79/138 and Broadway northbound, and from Central Street at Durfee Street/Milliken Boulevard on Thursday, May 28. The closures are necessary to demolish and reconstruct the last two elevated bridges as part of the …Continue Reading Fall River Route 79 Project: Ramp Closures May 28
MassDOT, Mapfre Insurance Encourage Safe Summer Driving posted on May 24
In time for Memorial Day, the kick-off to the summer driving season, MassDOT Acting Highway Administrator Thomas Tinlin joined MAPFRE Insurance in reminding motorists to adhere to speed limits, obey traffic laws and avoid distracted driving when traveling during the summer months. According to data …Continue Reading MassDOT, Mapfre Insurance Encourage Safe Summer Driving
Chelsea: Silver Line Gateway Project Bridge Closure posted on May 22
MassDOT will close the Washington Avenue Bridge in Chelsea on Tuesday, May 26 at 10:00 AM as part of the Silver Line Gateway Project. Appropriate detour signs will be in place to redirect traffic and pedestrians, and identify relocated bus stops. The bridge closure is …Continue Reading Chelsea: Silver Line Gateway Project Bridge Closure