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Correspondence


Document
February 7, 2000

John Baxter, Division Administrator
Federal Highway Administration
575 North Pennsylvania Street, Room 254
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204

Dear Mr. Baxter:

This letter provides the Region 5 United States Environmental Protection Agency's (USEPA) response to your letter, sent January 11, 2000, which requests comments on the Louisville Area amendment to the Horizon 2020 transportation plan (Plan) and Transportation Improvement Program (TIP).
On December 9, 1999, a conformity consultation meeting between transportation and environmental agencies in Kentucky, Indiana, Region 4 and Region 5 was held to discuss the specifics of this amendment. The draft amendment was forwarded to our offices electronically on January 6, 2000. The Kentuckiana Regional Planning and Development Agency (KIPDA) adopted the amendment on January 27, 2000. The adoption resolutions and public participation materials were forwarded to USEPA on February 2, 2000.

The Louisville area, which consists of Clark and Floyd County in Indiana and, Jefferson and portions of Oldham and Bullitt Counties in Kentucky, is an ozone moderate nonattainment area. This area is currently required to show consistency with the motor vehicle emissions budget for volatile organic compounds (VOC) and, to demonstrate that future nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions are less than 1990 baseline emissions. The area must also show for selected future years that NOx emissions under a build scenario will be less than those emissions under a no build scenario. The conformity analysis prepared by KIPDA for the Plan and TIP amendment demonstrates conformity to the emission budget for VOC and meets the relevant tests for NOx.

It is very unusual for the Department of Transportation to start the formal consultation process before the metropolitan planing agency has adopted an amendment. In this case, a very quick review was needed so that the I-65 project could stay on the contract letting schedule. The conformity consultation agencies agreed to meet this schedule and have agreed to an accelerated schedule in nearly every review that has occurred as part of this year’s Statewide Plan Update. We very much appreciate the initiative that you have begun with the Indiana Department of Transportation to minimize these types of last minute changes in the future. We look forward to an improved planning process and offer our assistance in reaching that goal.

In summary, USEPA Region 5 recommends that the Indiana projects contained in the amendment adopted January 27, 2000, can be found to conform to the State Implementation Plan. Region 4 USEPA is forwarding a letter on the Kentucky portion of the submittal.

If you have any questions regarding these comments, please contact
Ryan Bahr, Environmental Engineer, of my staff, at (312) 353-4366.

Sincerely yours,

/s/

J. Elmer Bortzer, Chief
Regulation Development Section

cc: Kathryn Watson, Chief
Air Programs Branch
Indiana Department of Environmental Management

Paul Fish, Director
Planning and Program Development
Federal Transit Administration

Janice Osadczuk, Division Chief
Division of Preliminary Engineering and Environment
Indiana Department of Transportation

Randy Simon, Transportation Planner
Kentuckiana Regional Planning and Development Agency

cc by E-mail:

Phyllis Hockett, Manager
Environmental Services Section
Indiana Department of Transportation

Dan Buck, Transportation Planner
Environmental Services Section
Indiana Department of Transportation

Larry Heil, Planning and Program Development Manager
Federal Highway Administration - Indiana Division

Joyce Newland, Transportation Planner
Federal Highway Administration - Indiana Division


For further information, contact: flowers.debra@epa.gov
This Information Last Modified On: 09/18/2008 04:03 PM