The Greensboro Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (GUAMPO) covered a lot of territory during its meeting Wednesday, Aug. 28 in the Greensboro City Council Chamber.
The GUAMPO manages the transportation planning process as required by federal law, which includes highways, transit, bicycle and pedestrian facilities. City Councilmember Marikay Abuzuaiter is chair of the GUAMPO board, which includes members from the Guilford County Board of Commissioners and town councils of municipalities in Guilford County as well as members of the Greensboro City Council.
At this meeting everything from bus shelters to interstate highways and North Carolina Department of Transportation financial issues were discussed.
One issue that won’t make folks that commute to the northwest happy is that the plan to revamp the intersection of Benjamin Parkway and Bryan Boulevard and add some additional travel lanes has been delayed a year. Rather than have the design and right-of-way acquisition completed in 2020, it has been put off to 2021 with construction slated for 2022.
In response to a speaker from the floor, Mayor Nancy Vaughan asked if the timeline on constructing sidewalks along North Elm Street between Cornwallis Drive and Cone Boulevard could be speeded up. Vaughan suggested that the city consider building a sidewalk on the east side of the street first because it would be easier and come back and do the west side later. Vaughan didn’t receive a firm commitment on that request.
What seemed to be a routine item to approve the “Greensboro Transit Authority Title VI Program Update 2019” was tabled. The report states that the Greensboro Transit Authority (GTA) is in compliance with the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and its amendments.
The reason that the matter was tabled was that the report has to name a person as the liaison responsible for implementing the program. The designated liaison is Adam Fischer, the director of the Greensboro Department of Transportation who is retiring on Aug. 31. The board was told that the federal government required the name of an actual individual, not a title or, as in many cases, a phrase that states “or his designee.” Because Fischer won’t be responsible for implementing the program and the board doesn’t know who will, it decided to table the item until the next meeting and let someone else figure out whose name to put on that line.
The board also honored Fischer with a resolution thanking him for his service, gave him a couple of gifts and had many kind words to say about his passion for improving transportation in Greensboro during his 32 years with the city.