You are on page 1of 49

Integrating Planning &

Environmental Assessment
Processes:
Strategies for Success

Mark Clark - Niagara Frontier


Transportation Authority
Rick Lucas - McFarland Johnson
Jeff Wood - McFarland Johnson
Sue McDonald - Federal Aviation
Administration
Planning & NEPA

The Silo Syndrome


Airport Consultants FAA

Planning NEPA
What creates the Silo Syndrome & the end
result?
Sponsors generate a project
Engineering designs the project
Sponsors hire a consultant to Do NEPA
What happens when it gets to the FAA?

But you said here but I really


meant here,
FAA Airport The Result ?
FAA Why cant you streamline

+
your process?
It is taking too long!
The Solution? Topple Those Silos

How is that done?

Think about it?

Adding common sense to a


common
problem = common sense
solution
The Team Approach - Hey, thats just
common sense

Ok Sponsors you go first!

Start Your Plan


How to Start That Plan?
Know Your Airport What is Really
Needed
Make Your Projects Based on this Need
- From there, Develop a Solid Purpose &
Need
Understand Your Environmental
Conditions
Plan on Letting Your FAA Know of Your
Ideas
Plan on Choosing an Appropriate
Consultant
Know My Airport?
Sponsors Need to:
Know Your Airport
Know Your Airports True Purpose &
Needs
Know Your Environmental Constraints
Know Your Public
Know How to Choose the Right
Consultant
Know Your FAA
Knowing Your Airport

Do you understand your runways?

Do you understand your environmental conditions


like floodplains, wetlands, air quality or noise?
Knowing Your Airport

Is your hanger space large


enough or do you really need
better access to it?

e you satisfied your RSA requirements, or is it


Part 77 Study or land acquisition you need?

Can you get to and from your airport e


Knowing Your Airports Projects
& Needs

Our Sustainable Master Plan Issues:


Traffic Flow
Inbound Baggage issues
Airfield & Snow Removal Facilities
Auto Parking
Do We Know our Public?

Is public perception of the airport accurate?

How will they react to controversy?

Is there public trust in the


airport?
Know How to Choose the Right
Consultant for the Job
AC 150/1500-14d: Architectural, Engineering,
and Planning Consultant Services for Airport
Grant Projects
How the FAA requires you to evaluate & hire a
consultant for FAA-funded projects
Choosing consultants should not be an afterthought
Choosing the right consultant for the project is crucial to succe
Sponsor MUST identify early project expectations to potential c
Know Your FAA

Get to Know Your FAA

Network with them any time possible


Get to know what makes them tick
Understand their schedules
Does your ADO know your consultants
Let them get to know you
So We Now Know it All.
Sponsors
Planning Next
Our Step?
Projects with Purpose and

Purpose: Something set up as an object or end to be


attained
Need: Necessary duty

Purpose & Need:


Build something that is necess
Purpose and Need
Ask Yourself the Details
Is your project(s) really needed and
justifiable?

If it is, can we prove it?

Once a project is deemed viable and needed, Environmental


impacts
must be considered as part of the planning as you begin to write
up
your Purpose and Need.

If you have not considered environmental


impacts early enough, trouble is brewing so
Heres your sign Mr. Airport, expect a bumpy ride.
How We did the Plan at BNIA

Our Language as a condition in the RFP for our Mas


SECTION 6.0 INTEGRATION OF NEPA AND PLANNING
It is the intent of this Master Plan Update to integrate NEPA/SEQRA considerations into its
planning process for the purpose of avoiding or minimizing environmental impacts on
selected alternatives and general capital planning.

Environmental conditions will play a key role in airport development and must be
considered during planning
and development stages of the Master Plan.

NEPA/SEQRA should not be considered the driving factor in planning direction of capital
improvements,
but used more as a reference guidance aimed at producing NEPA compatible projects.
Proper integration shall assist in development of:

Projects that avoid extreme environmental conflicts


Projects that generate a strong Purpose and Need
Projects that will be compatible in streamlining the Environmental Assessment process
Projects that minimize public controversy
Plan is in Place Whats Next?

Continue Team Coordination

Time to get our Consultant on board with our


plans
Planner Perspective Why NEPA
Integration?
Planning & Engineering:
- Client Service
- Project Implementation Timeline
- Internal Project Efficiencies

Planning & Environmental:


- Client Service
- Project Implementation Timeline
- Internal Project Efficiencies
- FAA Service Better
Better Projects!
Projects!
- Public Service
NEPA Integration vs. Separate
Process Have We Identified Environmental Features?
What are Major Environmental Constraints?
Political Considerations?

Inventory What are Underlying Assumptions of the Forecasts?


Future Fleet Mix?
Forecasts
Facility Requirements What is the justification?
Project Timing?
Alternatives
Were Environmental Constraints and Regulations Considered?
Recommended Plan Cost and Time Associated with Regulatory Compliance?
Community Impacts?
Airport Layout Plan
Does Preferred Alterative have the Least Impact? If Not, Why Not?
Economic Benefits?
Land Use Considerations
Construction Impacts

Can we get permits?


What is the NEPA process? How long and when?
Buffalo Niagara International (BNIA)
Project Approach
Project Team
- Multi-Discipline
Sustainable Foundation
- Sponsor Established Goals and Objectives
Inventory
- Share Vision with Stakeholders
- Obtaining Buy-In
Alternatives Analysis
- Incorporating NEPA into Evaluation Criteria
BNIA Stakeholder
Involvement
Make the Meeting Environment Green
- Sustainable Incorporation Recap with Every
Stakeholder Meeting
- Revisit Goals and Objectives
Gathering Data from Stakeholders
- Sustainability Charrette
- Think Green when Determining Facility
Requirements
Going Outside the Box
- Student/University Involvement
- Bring Ideas Back to Stakeholders for Input
External Opportunities:
Educational Outreach
BNIA Sustainable Master Plan
- Erie Community College Collaboration
Defining Sustainability
Airport Tour
Sustainability Charrette / Project Visioning

FAA Design Competition


- Binghamton Geothermal Apron
Concept to Concrete
BNIA Alternatives Analysis
Initial Screening
- Major Impacts or Disruptions
Standard Evaluation Criteria
- Safety, Standards, Facility Requirements Still Top
Priority
NEPA Impacts and Action Evaluation
- Identify Logical Groupings of Projects
- Determine Associated NEPA Actions (Cat-Ex, EA,
EIS)
Adding Sustainable Elements
- Icing on the Cake
BNIA Alternatives Analysis

Environmental Evaluation of Landside


Access Alternatives
Minimal Natural
Resource Concerns
Potential Air Quality
Benefit
Socio-Economic
Concerns
Adding Sustainable Elements

Standard ARFF Station More Daylight


Bays Rotated from Prevailing Winds
Snow Fence to Help Reduce Plowing
in Front of Bays
Quicker Terminal Access
Airport Planning for NEPA
Practitioners
Know the Basics and Key Issues
- Critical Safety Infrastructure
- Capacity vs. Delay
- Economic Benefits
Get the User Perspective
(Pilots, Operators, etc.)
- Deicing Operations
- Air Traffic Operations
Achieve Concurrence on Goals &
Objectives in Facility Requirements
- Shared Vision in Final Outcome
NEPA for Airport Planners
Know the Basics
- Purpose and Need (Build It and They Will
Come?)
- Regulatory
- Schedule and Budget Impacts
Identify Key Environmental Features
Consider Environmental Constraints in
Development of Alternatives
Public Opinion Matters
Capitalize on PR Opportunities
Bundle Logically-Connected Projects
Establish Baseline Conditions
Early
Understand the
Setting
Natural Resources
Constraints
- Comprehensive
- Consider all Impact
Categories
- Geo-Referenced
Establish Baseline Conditions
Early
Understand the
Setting
Social and Economic
- Role of Airport in
Regional Economy
- Regional Economic
Conditions
- Population Trends
- Off-Airport
Development
Political
Identify Key Issues
Critical Environmental, Economic,
Social Impacts?
Schedule and Budget Drivers
- NEPA Timeline
- Permits
- Mitigation
Technical Challenges
Regulatory and Political Perspectives
Alternatives Analysis
Evaluate Alternatives in Light of
Known Environmental Constraints
Can Alternatives be Modified to Avoid
or Minimize Impacts?
Will Mitigation be Required?
- How/Where?
- $$$$
Public Opposition
Case Study - ELM
Elmira Corning Regional Airport (ELM)
MPU Identified Need for 400 Added Takeoff Distance for
RW 6-24
No Opportunity to Extend RW 6
- Presence of I-86
- Airspace Constraints
MPU Identified 2 Build Alternatives for RW 24
Extension
- Extend 400 w/ Standard RSA
- Extend 400 w/ EMAS
MPU SOW and Funding Did Not Provide for
Detailed Analysis of Environmental Constraints
Case Study - ELM
Case Study - ELM

Field View Planning View


Case Study - ELM
NEPA Process
Extensive Public Involvement
- Advisory Committee
- Public Meetings
- Private Meetings w/ Neighbors

Focus on Selling It
Strong Political, Regulatory
and Public Opposition to MPU
Preferred Alternative
Results in New Preferred
Alternative
- Opposition Dissolved
- Airport Needs Met
- NEPA Conclusion Delayed
Mitigation
Look for Win-Win
Scenarios
Partner with Non-Profits
Consider Alternative
Delivery Methods
Involve Stakeholders Early
Public Education
Opportunities
Dont Shortchange the
Effort
Capitalize on PR Benefit
Mitigation
Airports are Uniquely
Positioned
On-Site Options Limited /
Not Desirable
Here for the Long Haul
Land Use Control
FAA Involvement a Two-
Edged Sword
Regulatory Agencies
Agencies are Stakeholders
- Integrate into Planning Process
Build Support through Early
Communication
Understand Implementing Regulations
- Dos and Donts
- Timeframes
- Unwritten Policies
Swamp and Pavement Tours
- Builds Understanding of Airport Operations
- Relationships
Public Involvement
Stakeholders Meetings
- Regulatory Agencies
- Interest Groups
- Concerned Citizens
Public Meetings
- What is the Message?
Key Issues
Why
- Clear and Concise Presentation of Data and
Findings
- Appropriate Expertise
- The Airport Was Here First!!
Best Practices
Multi-Disciplinary Team Approach
Consider Environmental Issues Early
and Often
Focus on Key Issues
Identify Mitigation Opportunities Early
Partner with Environmental
Stakeholders
Consider Regulatory Agencies as
Stakeholders
Now the Final FrontierThe FAAs
Involvement

41
FAA Planning & NEPA
National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) was Passed in
1969
Requires Federal Agencies to Evaluate the Environmental
Impacts of their Actions
CEQ Developed Implementing Regulations
FAA Developed Orders Agency Compliance
- Order 1050.1E, Change 1 Applies to all Lines of Business
- Order 5050.4B & Desk Reference Airports
Integrate Planning and NEPA at the Earliest Possible
Time

42
How Planning & NEPA
Relate

Master Plan Environmental Document

Project Definition and Purpose and Need Statement


Justification Baseline for comparison
Inventory Forecast and Fleet Mix Evaluated
Forecast Developed
Alternatives - On-Airport Reasonable range of Alternatives
Justification

A strong purpose and need

A clear justification

Reasonable alternatives considered

In order to move into the environmental phase!

44
Project Coordination
Coordination with key state and federal resource agencies
during the Master Plan can help pave the way for a cleaner EA.

Provide these agencies with the opportunity to comment on a


Master Plan when resources within their jurisdiction are
identified for possible impacts.

Form a strong team: Sponsor, Consultant, ADO Planner, ADO


Environmental Specialist, ADO Project Manager.

If you wait for the EA, then some of the work


and expectations coming out of the
Master Plan, will likely need to be redone.

45
Avoiding Pitfalls

Unexpected Projects / Quick Turnaround


Insufficient Justification for Projects Not
Listed as CatExs
Insufficient Information About the Project and/or its
Impacts
Lack of Input from Jurisdictional Agency

Avoid potential headaches in the future by


completing a thorough review now!

46
Wheres My Approval ???

NEPA Documents = FAA Documents, Not the Sponsors

Documents Must be Clear, Concise, Supported,


Defensible, and Fully Coordinated

47
Things To Remember
Communicate with your Local ADO
Coordinate with Agencies
Know your Consultant
NEPA Documents are Decision-Making, Disclosure
Documents
Provide Training within your Organization to Ensure
that Management, Engineers, Maintenance Folks,
Property Management, etc. Know about NEPA - Why
We Do It, and When

48
Questions?

This is How the Process Came Full Circle


and the Airports get What They Need

49