TAMC Rail Policy Committee Meeting Report

May 3, 2010 Meeting

Reported by Chris Flescher, Associate Director

There was a recommendation to create an Ad Hoc Committee for proposed stations.  The group members would visit the sites of the proposed Castroville and Pajaro Stations, plus the existing Salinas train station.  The recommendation passed.

The RPC has recently met with the operators of the Capitol Corridor.  They will make a presentation at the CCJPB meeting on June 16 in Oakland.  There is a possibility that service to Salinas will start in 2013.

The City of Council of Salinas has passed a resolution to support the so-called “smaller design” of the Salinas Intermodel Transit Center (ITC).  The smaller plan involves moving some Monterey Salinas Transit (MST) routes to the ITC and creating a second MST transit center there.  The existing MST center (which is 3 blocks away) will continue to be used for the other MST routes. The earlier plan was to completely replace the existing MST transit center with the future one next to the train station.
The RPC contacted the California Transportation Commission (CTC), asking them to program the remaining Prop. 116 funds to buying land for right of way.  The CTC approved the request.  The RPC made Requests for Proposals for real estate groups to assist with buying the necessary right of way property.

Monterey Branch Line

There are currently two routing options for the area just to the north of Window on the Bay Park.  The proposed track locations are close to each other, maybe 100 feet apart.

TAMC has received a message from the city of Marina, which lists about 70 comments.  According to the RPC, most of the concerns can be easily addressed.

The RPC showed their simulation video of trains passing between Castroville and Monterey.  The RPC members expressed an interest in having close up scenes in the video of trains passing Window on the Bay Park, and for certain major intersections.  The City of Monterey would like an addition to the video, showing an overhead view of a train passing Window on the Bay Park. All the scenes in the current video are side views, like a person walking nearby would see.  The RPC members made some suggestions for slight changes to the video.  Two suggestions were to have a few more people on the train, and to show the train moving a little more slowly.  The reason for the second suggestion is that some residents still worry that the trains will be big, loud, and fast, therefore disturbing the atmosphere in the area.  The video was a “draft” version, and the RPC will make the suggested changes before showing it to the public at some upcoming outreach sessions.

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