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EC876E8E06C521A9872587270050B983 Hearing Summary


Date Aug 4, 2021      
Location Old State Library

Public Highway Authority Update - Committee Discussion Only

08:41:46 AM  
Director Tim Stewart
and Board Chairman Chaz Tedesco, representing the E-470 Highway Authority
provided a PowerPoint presentation (Attachment A) to the committee.  Director
Stewart provided a handout was also provided (Attachment B).  Chairman
Tedesco made introductory remarks.  Director Stewart provided background
about the 47 mile toll road around the perimeter of Denver.  He indicated
that the authority is carrying $1.3 billion in debt that will pay off in
September of 2041 and provided a summary toll and fee reductions.
08:46:27 AM  
Director Stewart
said that the authority recently adopted a work plan that includes regional
public partnerships, facilitating transportation projects, and funding
capital needs with no new debt, as well as the update of the 2018 master
plan.  He also indicated that the authority continues to reduce debt
and is using cash reserves for needs.  

He shared 2021
traffic statistices through June, including that traffic is 22 percent
below 2019, but up 18 percent over 2020 traffic.  

Director Stewart
stated that the authority completed a $99 million project with Arapahoe
County and the City of Aurora that reconfigured lanes,addded lanes, and
made additions to the High Plains Trail.  There are plans to expand
and make improvements at I-70 and 104th Avenue, as well as 38th Avenue,
48th Avenue, 64th Avenue, 88th Avenue, and Pena Boulevard.

08:52:01 AM  
E-470 staff discussed
the highway's economic impact in the region for 2019, including a savings
of 43.2 million hours, equivalent to $354.5 million net value.  Staff
stated that $70 million was saved in avoided accidents and that the value
of commercial goods moved through the region on the toll road was $4.3
billion total in 2020.  

Director Stewart indicated that the authority has cut wrong way driving
in half, using cable barriers and is protecing wildlife with fencing.  He
stated that the authority is also contributing to improved air quality,
using electric fleet vehicles.  

Authority staff shared concerns about a drop in revenue with the passage
of Senate Bill 21-257.  Director Steward stated that concerns relate
to the absence of license plates on mobile machinery, since the authority
tolls vehicles using license plates.  There was a discussion about
how special mobile machinery is licensed.

08:58:51 AM  
Committee members
discussed how most mobile machinery may be pulled on a trailer or is not
road worthy, as well as examples of mobile machinery, such as oil and gas
09:12:22 AM  
There was a discussion
about a marketing campaign for the transponder and perks for E-470 customers,
as well as revenues related to traffic flow.  E-470 staff answered
questions about about the review of unsolicited proposals and the lack
of a formal policy on this issue.

09:24:27 AM  
John Hall, Managing
Administrator representing the Northwest Parkway  Authority, provided
a PowerPoint presentation (Attachment C) about the highway that links E-470,
I-25, and US36.  Mr. Hall discussed additional developments adjacent
to the parkway, including: on the eastern end of the Baseline Project,
north of the parkway, a development with 9,000 homes; at the Highway 287
interchange on the northeast corner at Lafayette, Medtronics development;
and west of Louisville a Conoco Phillips redevelopment.  

Mr. Hall provided
information about traffic during the pandemic, including: total trips falling
by 40 percent in 2020 from pre-pandemic levels; traffic recovery, currently
at 30 percent lower than pre-pandemic levels; and a general decrease in
accidents, while personal injuries have remained relatively constant.  

Mr. Hall stated
that toll rates are regulated by the consessionnaire, and increase  annually
per capita with the gross domestic product,U.S. Consumer Price Index, or
2 percent, whichever is higher.  He shared that the annual inspection
of the parkway recently resulted in a score of 4.96 out of 5, with no category
one (poses an immediate hazard) defects.  He indicated that only one
category two defect (does not pose an immediate hazard) was found.  

There was a discussion about recent projects, including pavement rideability
improvements on 15,000 feet of surfuce and electronic toll signage with
replacement of signs and the addition of 11 electronic variable tolling
09:33:34 AM  
Solar arrays used
by the parkway were discussed.  Mr. Hall highlighted seven solar arrays,
producing 940 killowats of electricity, and reducing the use of electricity
through the power grid by 47 percent over the last 10 years in the administrative
building. There was a discussion about solar panels assisting with the
operating costs of facilities and ramp locations.

09:34:47 AM  
Bill Ray, Executive
Director representing the Jefferson Parkway Highway Authority, provided
background information about the highway.  Mr. Ray provided a PowerPoint
presentation (Attachment D).  He indicated that the parkway is still
in planning stages.  There was a discussion about soil samples and
hazardous materials in the area of the proposed highway. Mr. Ray talked
about the City and County of Broomfield recent re-engagement in the parkway,
after withdrawing  in the past.  Mr. Ray answered questions about
the continued relevancy of the project and changing the route of the parkway,
including an environmental impact study should the route change.

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