Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning Environment and Natural Resources Committee met May 2
Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning Environment and Natural Resources Committee met May 2.
Here is the minutes provided by the committee:
Members Present: Keary Cragan – U.S. EPA, Martha Dooley – Village of Schaumburg, Sarah Edwards (for Deborah Stone) – Cook County Department of Environmental Control, Danielle Gallet – Metropolitan Planning Council, Stacy Meyers – Openlands, Tom Rickert – Kane County, Mike Sullivan – IDOT, Mike Warner – Lake County Stormwater Management Commission, Sean Wiedel – Chicago Department of Transportation
Members Absent: Lynn Boerman – IDNR, Jack Darin – Illinois Sierra Club
Staff Present: Sarah Buchhorn, Anthony Cefali, Brian Daly, Kate Evasic, Tony Manno, Jared Patton, Elizabeth Scott, Joe Szabo
Others Present: Lindsay Birt, Elena Grossman, Andrew Hawkins, Fumi Kikuyama, Victor Magar, Edith Makra, Gavin Taves, Mathilde Wiedemann
1.0 Call to Order 9:30 a.m.
Chair Sean Wiedel called the meeting to order at approximately 9:35 a.m.
2.0 Agenda Changes and Announcements
Agenda change: Item originally numbered 8.0 (Greenest Region Compact) was moved up in the agenda to follow Item 3.0. The items were renumbered as below.
FLIP: CMAP’s Future Leaders in Planning youth leadership program will be offered from July 15th to July 20th, 2019. FLIP is a free program where teens learn about the issues that shape the CMAP region and think of solutions with other students from Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will counties. High school students from the CMAP region are eligible. Applications will be accepted online through May 20th, 2019.
New members: CMAP staff updated the committee on the recruitment process for new members of the committee. Staff has selected several nominees and begun contacting them to gauge their interest in joining the committee. Staff hopes to introduce the new members at the July meeting of the committee.
3.0 Approval of Minutes—March 7, 2019
A motion to approve the minutes of the March 7, 2019 meeting was made by Stacy Meyers, seconded by Tom Rickert. The motion carried with all in favor.
4.0 Greenest Region Compact – Edith Makra, Metropolitan Mayors Caucus and Martha Dooley, Village of Schaumburg
The Greenest Region Compact (GRC) aligns municipal action with high- level consensus sustainability goals. It comprises a pledge, called the “GRC”; a companion framework that presents strategies and objectives to achieve GRC goals; and collaborative action to achieve goals. The GRC has been formally adopted by 118 municipalities (including Kane County) to serve 5.8 million residents. Edith Makra provided an overview of the GRC and its role in regional sustainability and Martha Dooley discussed her use of the GRC Framework to update the Village of Schaumburg’s Comprehensive Plan and Green Action Plan. They also discussed how GRC communities are now working collaboratively to implement GRC goals, such as the successful work to advance solar energy in the region through the SolSmart program.
Counties and the GRC. Members noted that the Lake County Board is likely to adopt the GRC, which is moving through the approval process following approval by the new Environment and Energy Committee. Edith Makra said that while the GRC was originally designed for municipalities, they have had interest from counties, which have adopted the Compact with small revisions to suit their level of government. Kane County has adopted the Compact and Will County is also considering to do so. Lake County will also shortly receive SolSmart Bronze recognition.
Data. Edith noted that the data and information the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus collected as part of the process is available and can be helpful to interested communities.
Role of ENR Committee. Members thanked Edith for MMC’s work and encouraged members to promote the GRC with the governments that they work with.
5.0 CMAP’s Legislative Agenda – Anthony Cefali, CMAP
Staff updated the Committee on relevant legislative activities and bill actions in the Illinois General Assembly.
Capital bill. Members asked about CMAP’s role in developing a state capital bill. Anthony Cefali replied that CMAP is part of the ongoing negotiations and answering questions from legislators. He explained that CMAP is mostly involved in discussions of sustainable transportation revenues, as recommended in ON TO 2050. He further noted that CMAP Executive Director Joe Szabo testified before a subcommittee and offered to share that testimony with interested members.
Stormwater. Members notified the committee that there is a subcommittee meeting in Lake County this week to talk about stormwater infrastructure. The timing of these discussions is ripe given current flooding in the region. Anthony noted that CMAP also testified on the need for green infrastructure as part of the capital bill as well.
6.0 Local Technical Assistance Projects – Tony Manno, CMAP
Staff presented the new slate of local planning projects for FY20 and solicited feedback from members on projects that are of interest to the committee for periodic updates or partnership opportunities.
Will County Freight and Land Use Plan. Members thanked CMAP for its upcoming work in Will County. They cited the opportunity it presents to convene discussion about how the different land uses that emerged following the closing of the Joliet Arsenal can complement one another. Members requested that the Committee receive updates on the project.
Consultant-led projects. Asked about the projects the memo identifies as being led by consultants, Tony Manno explained that the designations are preliminary. The projects will have to go through an RFP process, discussion with IDOT, and other steps to establish a timeline. Tony also noted that some projects will be staff-led, but with a component provided by consultants.
IDNR water planning funds. Members asked about funding that was secured from IDNR to develop an approach to using CMAP’s water demand forecast in local plans. Kate Evasic responded that this set of LTA projects will include several as pilot projects for that approach, but CMAP has not yet determined which plans that would be.
Embedded staff planners. In response to a question about how projects connect to the ESP program, Tony explained that this call for projects occurred prior to staff’s placement as ESPs, but that CMAP hopes ESPs will identify good candidates for projects to apply for in future calls.
RTA project selection. Tony explained that RTA recently announced which projects they selected, which did not include the Woodstock, Beach Park, or CTA Red Line project (which was withdrawn). Asked why the Beach Park project was not selected, Tony said that RTA currently focuses their work on the existing system, and Metra is currently studying all stations system-wide to see how they can address future station additions. Tony also explained the application and selection process for the two agencies. Communities submit a single application, and CMAP and RTA identify transit-focused projects that RTA should review first. CMAP then reviews any projects from that set that RTA declines to select. One project in the project list (Elevated Chicago) will be done jointly due to its combination of TOD, equity, and capacity building.
Central Council of Mayors Transportation and Stormwater Infrastructure Plan. Members asked about the Cook County Forest Preserves’ involvement in the plan and stressed the need to make sure projects like this one meet stormwater needs without compromising open space and conservation goals.
Lake County Five-Year Consolidated Plan. Members asked for updates on what the grant partnership assistance would entail. Tony said there is not yet an update, but Jonathan Burch (CMAP Staff) will provide an update when available.
Next call for projects. Asked when the next call for projects will take place, Tony said that a date has not been set, but will likely come in the fall of 2019. CMAP will conduct outreach this summer to solicit another round of promising applications.
7.0 Illinois International Port District – Elizabeth Scott, CMAP
Through the LTA program, CMAP is assisting IIPD to better understand how IIPD fits into the fabric of the surrounding areas, and how IIPD may best optimize its resources and assets to promote future freight movement, economic development, conservation, and active transportation/recreation. Elizabeth Scott will provide an overview of the planning priorities report and upcoming master planning work.
Community engagement. Attendees asked about outreach, particularly to CHA residents in Altgeld Gardens. Elizabeth Scott responded that robust community engagement is important to the project, especially to residents on topics such as future public access to Port properties that will not be in active industrial and shipping use. Elizabeth noted that CMAP has been at the table with CHA, the Cook County Forest Preserves, and the American Institute of Architects on their ongoing Beaubien Woods plan.
Chicago Park District. Members asked how the project team is working with CPD, and offered to share materials from past projects on which EPA partnered with CPD, including brownfield assessment and a technical study of Big Marsh. Elizabeth noted the many organizations that have been doing good planning work in the area for many years, with CPD having done a great deal. Members said that CPD has many resources about the Lake Calumet area that originated in the City’s Department of the Environment but were transferred during reorganization. They also shared that the Ford Environmental Center and Divvy will be starting in the area this year.
Opportunity to connect land and water planning. Members emphasized the importance of connecting the Port’s master plan to ongoing work on the Chicago Area Waterway System. Members believe the visions of the many current planning exercises should be aligned so that changing waterways are viewed as a natural asset and can complement the nearby neighborhoods. Elizabeth said the project team supports this priority and will continue to work with other implementers, such as those convened by the Calumet Collaborative, to ensure that future efforts incorporate integrated land and water goals.
Connections to other port plans. Members offered to connect the project team with port planners in Duluth and St. Paul, which have worked with EPA in the past.
8.0 Algonquin-Cary Subarea Plan – Kate Evasic, CMAP
Through the LTA program, CMAP is assisting the Villages of Algonquin and Cary to create a subarea plan for three quarry sites along the Route 31 corridor. The plan will identify the highest and best uses for the quarry sites, including recreation, economic development, and natural resource protection, and improve pedestrian and bicycle connectivity throughout the area. Kate Evasic will provide an overview of the process and work completed to date.
Subsurface mining. Members asked what kind of mining could be taking place under these sites and whether it would use hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. Kate Evasic responded that it would use another technique to excavate rock beneath the surface. Members offered to connect the project team to work that has been done to address subsurface mining in the Iron Range in Minnesota.
9.0 Other Business
10.0 Public Comment
11.0 Next Meeting
The next meeting will be July 11 at 9:30 am in the Lake County conference room.
The meeting adjourned at 11:40 a.m.