EIS Home > EIS Library > Scoping Report > Appendix G - All Scoping Comments > Agencies

Allan Giffen (City of Everett) (#11711)

Date Submitted: 01/21/13
Location: Everett, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Allyson Brooks (#3275)

Date Submitted: 11/20/2012
Location: Olympic, WA
Comment:
See attached.
Attached Image:

Board of Health San Juan County (#2374)

Date Submitted: 09/20/12
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Brian Sullivan (Snohomish County Tomorrow) (#12239)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Location: , WA
Comment:
See Attached
Attached Files:

Brian Williams (#8481)

Date Submitted: 01/17/2013
Location: LaConner, WA
Comment:
see attached WDFW comments.
Attached Files:

Brian Williams (WDFW Habitat Program) (#9100)

Date Submitted: 01/17/13
Location: La Conner, WA
Comment:
See attached WDFW comments. Disregard early sent version with file name Draft EIS Scoping Outline 1.17.13.doc.
Attached Files:

Bruce Lisser (Skagit Valley Hospital District) (#2516)

Date Submitted: 11/05/12
Location: Mt Vernon, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Image:

Carla Nichols (Town of Woodway Mayor) (#12169)

Date Submitted: 01/18/13
Location: Woodway, WA
Comment:
Please find Woodway’s comments attached.

Sincerely,
Heidi

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Heidi K. S. Napolitino
Deputy Clerk/Permit Technician
Town of Woodway
23920 113th Place W.
Woodway, WA 98020
206.542.4443
fax: 206.546.9453
http://www.townofwoodway.com
Attached Files:

Carrie Lacher (Town of Friday Harbor) (#7720)

Date Submitted: 01/05/13
Location: Friday Harbor, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Chad Eiken (City of Vancouver) (#8785)

Date Submitted: 01/18/2013
Location: Vancouver, WA
Comment:
Please see attached comment letter.
Attached Files:

Chris Stearns (Seattle Human Rights Commission) (#12211)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Comment:
Dear Sir/Madam:

Please find attached the comments of the Seattle Human Rights Commission on the scoping of the EIS for the proposed Gateway Pacific Terminal at Cherry Point. Thank you for considering our comments.

Chris

Chris Stearns, Chairman
Seattle Human Rights Commission
www.seattle.gov/humanrights
Chris Stearns, Of Counsel
T 206.902.6680 Seattle | T 202.257.6428 D.C.
HOBBS STRAUS DEAN & WALKER, LLP
Washington, DC | Portland, OR | Oklahoma City | Sacramento | Seattle
HOBBSSTRAUS.COM
Attached Files:

Christine Lehnertz (National Park Service) (#13911)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Location: San Francisco, CA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Christine Plourde (#7371)

Date Submitted: 01/14/2013
Comment:
Please see attached letter and supporting document.
Attached Files:

City of Bellingham (#11394)

Date Submitted: 01/22/2013
Location: Bellingham, wa
Comment:
GPT/Custer Spur EIS
c/o CH2M HILL
1100 112th Avenue NE Suite 400
Bellevue, WA 98004

RE: City of Bellingham's Second Set of Scoping Comments on the Gateway Pacific Terminal

Dear Sir or Madam:

This letter is the City of Bellingham's second set of scoping comments on the Gateway Pacific Terminal (GPT) proposal. These scoping comments are provided pursuant to both the Washington State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The scoping comments are submitted to you on behalf of the City of Bellingham ("City").

On July 23, 2012 the Bellingham City Council adopted Resolution 2012-22 ("Resolution"), which highlighted the need for additional Burlington Northern Santa Fe ("BNSF") railroad infrastructure within the City in order for the GPT project to function as proposed at full build-out in 2026. The Resolution also specified how this infrastructure would negatively affect the City's ability to achieve its adopted Legacies and Strategic Commitments. The Resolution provided the foundation for the City's December 12, 2012 scoping letter that identified resources and planning efforts within the City and its Urban Growth Area that would be negatively impacted by the GPT proposal.

The City is now providing the following specific scoping comments for consideration and inclusion in the Final Scoping Document. Pursuant to SEPA these scoping comments intend to:

1. Identify City resources and planning efforts that may be negatively affected by the proposal;
2. Provide a description of significant unavoidable adverse impacts;
3. Recommend a reasonable range of alternatives; and
4. Recommend mitigation measures to avoid, minimize and mitigate effects of the proposal

1. City resources and planning efforts may be negatively affected by the GPT and the associated increase in the number of dry-bulk commodity trains (including coal) as well as their length, frequency, duration and weight:

 Negative impacts to funded and completed at grade improvements. Within the last eight years the City has implemented upgrades at two existing at grade crossings costing hundreds of thousands of dollars. These improvements occurred at the intersections of Roeder Avenue and F Street and Wharf and Pine Streets.

Therefore, please require the applicants to analyze the suitability of the completed improvements in relation to the increase in the number, length, frequency, duration and weight resulting from up to 18 additional dry-bulk commodity trains (including coal) that are expected to pass through these at grade crossings per day.

 Potential unsuitability of crossings if project completed. Additional at grade crossings and water-body crossings exist within the City have not been upgraded and may not be suitable for the increase in the number, length, frequency, duration and weight resulting from up to 18 additional dry-bulk commodity trains (including coal). These at grade crossings are located at: Harris Avenue, 6th Street providing access to the Fairhaven Public Boat Launch, Bayview Drive, Pine and Wharf Streets, Cornwall Avenue, Central Avenue, C and F Streets. Crossings over Bellingham Bay are: Chuckanut Bay Causeway, lagoon crossings at Madrona Point, Edgemoor, Post Point, Padden Creek Estuary, Roeder Avenue Bridge.

Therefore, please require the applicants to analyze the suitability of these crossings in relation to the increase in the number, length, frequency, duration and weight resulting from up to 18 additional dry-bulk commodity trains (including coal) that are expected to pass through these at grade crossings per day.

 Negative impacts to planned City projects. Negative impacts to several projects specified on the City's adopted six-year Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) for 2013-2018 (project numbers indicated below indicate number on TIP) have not been designed nor analyzed to interface with up to 18 additional freight train trips per day at the time of full build-out of the GPT. The expected impacts are not solely a result of the number of trains but also their length, frequency, duration and weight. These projects are seriously undermined and threatened by this additional and unplanned increase in impacts. Specifically, these projects are:

Project #11: Boulevard Park to Cornwall Avenue Overwater Pedestrian Walkway. The increase in number, frequency, volume and length of dry-bulk commodity (including coal) trains serving the GPT will negatively impact both the general public's ability to access the walkway itself by vehicle at the Boulevard Park entrance on Bayview Drive, as well as the demand for use of the walkway due to increase in noise and air quality impacts. The City expects that the project will cost a total of approximately eight million dollars. Approximately $660,000 has been spent to date.

Therefore, please require the applicant to analyze the negative impacts to this project in terms of air quality, odor, aesthetics, recreation, scenic resources and transportation systems pursuant to WAC 197-11-444.

Project #12 (12a - 12c): Waterfront District Multimodal Improvements. The planned connections from downtown and existing streets to the Waterfront District may also be significantly impacted by the increase in dry-bulk commodity trains as specified above. (The proposed Waterfront District Sub-Area Plan is scheduled for legislative review this spring.) While contemplation of relocating the BNSF tracks was included as part of the Sub-Area Plan the number, length, frequency, duration and weight of the proposed trains associated with the GPT were not.

These multimodal connections interface with the BNSF railway at the intersections of Roeder, Central and Granary Avenues (12a; Granary - Bloedel) and Cornwall Avenue and Log Pond Drive (12b; Bloedel to Cornwall). Project 12c is a new arterial loop that does not interface with the BNSF railroad infrastructure, but is designed and intends to facilitate, improved function for projects 12a and 12b. Additional crossings at Cornwall Avenue and Oak Street, if BNSF track is NOT relocated, and Commercial Street, via a new bridge into the Waterfront District, would also be negatively impacted.

Therefore, please require the applicant to analyze the impacts to these planned improvements pursuant to WAC 197-11-444, specifically focusing on the six elements relating to transportation.

Project #17: Chestnut-Bay Bridge Rehabilitation. This project is intended to upgrade the existing bridge which is currently weight limited. However, this rehabilitation project does not include additional rehabilitation and structural improvements that may be necessary due to a significant increase in the number, more frequent, heavier and longer freight train trips.

Therefore, please require the applicant to analyze the structural integrity of this bridge in relation to the increase in the number, length, frequency, duration and weight of dry-bulk commodity trains (including coal) and the structural capability of the bridge to handle the new significant impact.

 The Greenhouse Gas Inventory and Climate Protection Action Plan, adopted by the City in May, 2007. In May of 2007 the City adopted the Greenhouse Gas Inventory and Climate Protection Action Plan. This plan focuses on City operations and how greenhouse gas emissions can be reduced. Phase I includes an inventory of our emissions and Phase II includes the action plan. The increase in number, length, frequency, duration and weight of up to 18 additional dry-bulk commodity trains negatively affects Action Plan Item #15 which is to "reduce idling time." City vehicles which must idle while waiting for trains to pass at- grade crossings actually increases idling times.

Please analyze the impacts to achieving this element of our Climate Action Plan as a result of increased gate down times at six at grade crossing locations; Harris Avenue, Bayview Drive, Wharf and Pine Streets, Cornwall Avenue, Central and Roeder Avenues and F Street and Roeder Avenue.

2. Significant unavoidable adverse impacts to the City as a result of a significant increase in the number, length, frequency, duration and weight of dry-bulk commodity freight trains (including coal) travelling through the City and its Urban Growth Area include:

 Harm and threat to the lives, safety and welfare of City citizens as well as the environment in which they live, resulting from freight train derailments, collisions and spills. Derailments, collisions and spills can destroy the areas in which they occur. Areas beyond the immediate site are also threatened from these events as is the case with tracks over or adjacent to Bellingham Bay and its pocket estuaries. A derailment, collision and/or spill or any combination of these events would result in immeasurable harm and significant impacts to aquatic ecosystems and to the air we breathe.
Furthermore, derailments, collisions and spills can damage or compromise vital existing infrastructure such as underground gas lines, City sewer and water mains and electricity substations. Cascade Natural Gas ("CNG") has transmission and distribution lines that run parallel to and intersect sections of BNSF infrastructure. A 16-inch CNG main begins at the BNSF crossing at Cornwall Avenue and travels along a potential corridor of to-be-relocated track along the base of the bluff. This 16-inch main transitions to a 12-inch main and runs from between Commercial and Bay Streets to Army Street and again from C Street to Bellwether Way along and parallel to the BNSF mainline track. Encogen and Puget Sound Energy have significant electricity and other supporting infrastructure near the existing mainline track. Destruction or disruption to any of these vital services resulting from a derailment, collision or spill would cause significant unavoidable adverse impacts to life, safety and welfare of the general public.

The City has water and sewer mains and trunk lines that cross underneath BNSF infrastructure in several locations and run parallel to in others. Sewer main pipe sizes range from 24 inches up to 60 inches in diameter. Water mains range from 8 inches up to as much as 30 inches in diameter. Collisions or derailments in locations where these mains exist would cause significant unavoidable impacts to the City's ability to provide vital water and sewer services to its citizens and numerous commercial and industrial establishments.

These significant impacts are in addition to those that would manifest themselves if a derailment, collision or spill occurred on mainline tracks that are abutting or traveling over Bellingham Bay and/or its pocket estuaries.

 Congestion, stacking/queuing, frequency and duration of multiple freight trains that are obstructed or 'backed up' by slides, debris, flooding and other unforeseen events at locations south of Bellingham and specifically between Bow and the Custer Spur. It is extremely difficult to predict when mud and debris slides across tracks will occur which would cause trains to be delayed and stacked until the blockage is cleared or cause a derailment, collision and/or spill. AMTRAK customers frequently get on and off Greyhound busses forced into service during the winter months at the Fairhaven Station in place of passenger trains when these slides, debris flows or flooding 'events' occur. The City expects this trend to continue, particularly in light of the effects of climate change and the resultant increase in precipitation in the City's general geographic area. In addition to derailments, collisions and spills, the City also expects the unavoidable significant impact and likelihood of multiple freight trains traveling through Bellingham in succession with minimal delays between them to result in (1) serious threats to emergency service providers: (2) congestion at waterfront intersections; (3) delays in movement of non-rail goods and services utilizing designated truck routes and arterials; and (4) increased noise and impacts to air quality.

 Destruction of marine near-shore environments and other critical areas such as pocket estuaries and landslide hazard areas resulting from the development of new railroad infrastructure such as a new railroad siding in order to accommodate up to 18 additional dry-bulk commodity trains (including coal) per day on the Bellingham Subdivision Mainline. Various studies have concluded that there is an existing bottleneck or "chokepoint" on the Bellingham Subdivision Mainline between Bow and the Custer Spur. These studies also conclude that one likely location for a new siding to handle an increase in freight train traffic (in order to maintain existing freight and passenger train capacity and efficiency) would be parallel to and water-ward of the existing mainline between, roughly, Harris Avenue and the foot of Cornwall Avenue within Bellingham City limits. Such a siding would not only destroy existing marine near-shore environments, but would also undermine and nullify planned necessary shoreline restoration efforts at Padden Creek Estuary, Boulevard Park, the historic Cornwall Avenue Landfill and portions of the Whatcom Waterway.

3. Please consider and analyze as specified the following reasonable alternatives to the proposed project as part of the Environmental Impact Statement process:

 The No Action alternative.
 Development of only the west loop as well as loading and berthing / wharf infrastructure for up to one cape size vessel.
 Development of the original proposal permitted via SHS92-20 and MDP92-3 provided that the items specified within the 1999 settlement agreement have been completed to the satisfaction of the DOE, WDFW and the Washington Environmental Council.
 As an alternative to negatively impacting the nine at grade crossings (vehicle and multi-modal) within the City please consider the following combinations of at grade closures and construction of new grade separated crossings; at grade closures of Pine / Wharf Streets, Central Avenue and/or C Street in tandem with construction of new grade separated crossings: Commercial Street Bridge (down to Waterfront District) and a new Cornwall Avenue Bridge at the time the BNSF tracks are relocated to the east at the base of the bluff.
 As an alternative to negatively impacting existing available capacity on the Bellingham Subdivision Mainline for freight and passenger service please consider the development of a new railroad siding in a minimum of two locations between Mount Vernon and the Custer Spur.
 The capability of the existing BNSF rail line running parallel to Highway 9 from north of Mount Vernon north to Sumas in terms of capacity, structural integrity and overall suitability for potentially accepting some increases in freight train traffic. Potentially, the train traffic on this corridor could be limited to freight destined for Canada in order to free up the Bellingham Subdivison Mainline for GPT generated trains. The City recognizes that residents and businesses on this rural alignment as well as those within Whatcom County's smaller cities may be adverse to this type of analysis and that any necessary or required upgrades and improvements may also have associated negative impacts.

4. Please consider requiring the following mitigation measures on the subject proposal:

 Covering coal in each rail car with appropriate material or structure that minimizes dust and particulate from leaving the car while underway as well as from leaching of rainwater.
 Enclosing entire coal handling area with weather protective structure(s) or building(s) to minimize dust and particulate from coal stockpile areas being broadcast to abutting properties and onto onsite wetlands and the marine environment.
 Developing and installing wind-walls around the entire coal handling area to minimize dust and particulate from coal stockpile areas being broadcast to abutting properties and onto onsite wetland and the marine environment. The terminal is in the direct and unobstructed path of the prevailing winds, which are from the southwest, as well as those common winter winds originating in the Fraser River Valley.
 Establishing railroad "quiet zones" within Bellingham's city limits.
 Installing sound walls at selected locations within Bellingham's city limits.
 Specify the mitigation/handling requirements imposed by BNSF for the transport of coal.
 Specify the mitigation / handling / protocol / response requirements imposed by BNSF in the event of a derailment, collision or spill of any freight train.
 Please specify the mitigation / response measures that are employed in the event of a marine vessel spill, collision or other accident that is associated with importing or exporting any commodity from the GPT.
 Please establish air quality thresholds for coal dust at a minimum of two locations at the upland terminal handling area, at the wharf and a minimum of three locations within Bellingham's city limits and require quarterly air quality reports at these locations.

Pursuant to NEPA the following scoping comments are intended to:

1. Request that additional information be provided;
2. Affect the applicant's Purpose and Need Statement; and
3. Request an indirect effects analysis under NEPA.

1. The City requests that the data, reports, analyses, studies or methodologies that were conducted by BNSF and/or SSA Marine or any of their subcontractors, in which it was concluded that all the new infrastructure at the Custer Spur is necessary in order to "safely and sufficiently handle the potential volume and length of trains without impacting operations on the Cherry Point Subdivision Mainline or the Bellingham Subdivison Mainline" be made available to the Co-Lead Agencies prior to their establishment of a range of reasonable alternatives. The City is unaware of how improvements made on the Custer Spur would alleviate known "chokepoints" on the Bellingham Subdivision Mainline between Bow and the Custer Spur.

2. Purpose and Need Statement.

The Purpose and Need Statement ("PNS") is not 'finalized' until scoping is concluded. As you are aware, the Purpose and Need Statement is utilized by the United States Army Corps of Engineers (COE) to define the scope of the project and identify a reasonable range of alternatives which must be "rigorously explored and objectively evaluated." The City acknowledges that the Co-Lead Agencies overall objective is to streamline and merge the SEPA and NEPA processes. However, under NEPA, the Purpose and Need Statement, in its final form, places additional emphasis on the alternatives to be considered.

The City recognizes that the PNS includes two distinct projects as well as two distinct applicants. To summarize, one project is proposed by SSA Marine, which intends to "develop and successfully operate a multimodal marine terminal that includes upland facilities, loading trestle and a deep draft wharf for import and export of dry-bulk commodities to meet international and domestic demand."(See applicant's PNS.)

The other project is proposed by BNSF which intends to make improvements and modifications along the Cherry Point Subdivision Mainline (aka Custer Spur) to facilitate the increase in train traffic. In fact, the actual language describing the Custer Spur proposal states, "Improvements to the BNSF Cherry Point Subdivision Mainline (Custer Spur) are necessary to accommodate the number, length, and weight of trains, as well as to safely and efficiently provide rail services for the existing facilities in the Cherry Point Industrial Area and the proposed GPT facility. Current capacity is insufficient to efficiently and safely handle the potential volume and length of trains without impacting operations on the Cherry Point Subdivision Mainline or the Bellingham Sub-divison Mainline." (See applicant's PNS. Italics and underling added for emphasis.)

The City cannot reconcile nor understand why the Custer Spur proposal is included in the PNS for the reasons stated above without also acknowledging and addressing other known infrastructure deficiencies on the Bellingham Subdivision mainline. Rail studies performed by the Washington State Department of Transportation and others, as far back as 2006, and as recently as 2011, have concluded that existing BNSF railroad infrastructure allows operation of existing freight and passenger services to operate at or near capacity. Studies also conclude that chokepoints already exist on the Bellingham Subdivision Mainline between Bow and the Custer Spur. These studies did not take into account the phased increase of up to 18 additional dry-bulk commodity trains per day on the Bellingham Sub-division at full build out of the GPT.

The City requests that the PNS be revised to include future development of BNSF railroad infrastructure (beyond those BNSF proposed improvements along the Custer Spur) anywhere within Whatcom County in order to address the chokepoint and capacity deficiencies specified above.

3. Indirect Effects Analysis

Indirect effects are those effects that “. . . are caused by the action and are later in time and farther removed in distance, but are still reasonably foreseeable” (40 C.F.R. 1508.8). These are different than "direct effects" which are caused by the action and occur at the same time and place. For example, there is a direct effect of building the upland terminal facilities on wetlands, i.e. wetland fill. Indirect effects are also different than "cumulative impacts," which are those impacts on the environment which result from the incremental impact of the action if added to other past, present and reasonably foreseeable future actions, regardless of who undertakes the actions. For example, there is an expected cumulative impact on rail capacity, air quality, etc. when added with the number of freight trains hauling coal to other dry-bulk commodity terminals proposed within Washington and Oregon States.

Many cities between the origin of the coal and GPT, especially those with larger populations, will be negatively impacted by the increase in freight trains over time as the GPT approaches full build-out. Full build-out is projected to occur in 2026, or, an estimated ten years after the GPT is built. Projected export of coal to Asia will begin at 25 million metric tons per year and increase up to approximately 48 million metric tons per year over that ten year period. The number of trains (delivering and then returning) will start at 10 per day and increase to up to 18. If the GPT is built, impacts on municipalities between the Powder River Basin and GPT continue and increase up to and beyond the 10-year full build out date.

These estimates and projections are specifically listed in Table 4.5 of the Revised Project Information Document from March 2012 as submitted by the applicant as part of its project application. These indirect effects ARE reasonable and foreseeable because the applicant states it directly in its application.

Municipalities vary in size and are in various stages of land use and transportation planning. It is unclear to many of the municipalities along the rail corridor exactly how adversely they will be affected by the increase in freight trains resulting from this specific proposal. Municipalities within the Puget Sound region have ports and important transportation hubs (such as the Washington State Ferries) that may be negatively impacted by the increase in freight trains well into the future.

The City of Bellingham's Planning Commission is about to commence review of the Waterfront District Sub-Area Plan. This project presents a rare opportunity for the City to reclaim and renew its downtown central waterfront that for decades was a pulp mill. However, the Waterfront District is separated from the downtown core by the BNSF mainline and the City is concerned about the adverse impacts that may result from the GPT.

While it is true that coal leaving the Powder River Basin (as well as other mines) may go to a handful of different terminals in Oregon and Washington, those terminals all have limited capacities. The GPT is expected to be the largest of the proposed terminals. With the exception of the proposed Millennium Bulk Terminal, which is proposed to be slightly smaller than the GPT, the GPT terminal will export nearly twice the tonnage and require twice the number of freight trains - per year - as any of the other proposed terminals in Washington and Oregon.

An Indirect Effects Analysis is appropriate in this case because the proposed GPT terminal located in the northwest corner of Whatcom County will have effects that are "later in time and farther removed
in distance, but are still reasonably foreseeable.”

The City requests that an Indirect Effects Analysis (as defined in 40 C.F.R. Section 1508.8) be performed to determine the indirect effects resulting from the applicant's projected increase of up to 18 additional dry-bulk commodity freight trains (including coal) that originate from and return to the points of origin where the commodity is mined, extracted or harvested. Specifically, the study area should include incorporated municipalities that may be indirectly affected by the applicant's projected increase in freight trains hauling dry-bulk commodities (including coal) that travel or merge onto the BNSF mainline between the Centralia Junction (where the BNSF and Union Pacific lines merge) and the GPT. The analysis should include a 20-year time period beginning at the time the GPT is operational. The City makes this request pursuant to 40 Code of Federal Regulations; Section 1502.16; Environmental Consequences.

The City of Bellingham appreciates the opportunity to provide this follow up scoping letter and we look forward to having these comments reflected in the Final Scoping Document and carried forward into the EIS process.

Sincerely,

Kelli Linville, Mayor
City of Bellingham

Seth Fleetwood, President
Bellingham City Council

City of Sumner (#9041)

Date Submitted: 01/18/2013
Location: Sumner, WA
Comment:
City of Sumner
1104 Maple Street
Sumner, WA 98390

January 18, 2013

GPT/Custer Spur EIS
c/o CH2M Hill
1100 112th Avenue NE, Suite 400
Bellevue, Washington 98004

RE: Scoping for the Gateway Pacific Terminal Environmental Impact Statement

Thank you for considering the following scoping comments from the City of Sumner. The impacts discussed are likely to occur in the majority of jurisdictions along the likely rail corridor that would be used to transport coal and other goods to the Gateway Pacific Terminal (GPT) and are discussed employing general language indicative of that fact. However, these comments are intended to address off-site impacts of the GPT project that are also specific to the City of Sumner and its Urban Growth Area.

The City of Sumner’s EIS Scoping comments are as follows;

1. The EIS should include analysis of the cumulative impact of all proposed coal export facilities and/or dry bulk commodity terminals within Washington and Oregon in a Cumulative Impact Analysis (CIA) pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Specifically the cumulative impact to existing freight and passenger rail traffic capacity in Washington State should be analyzed. The CIA should address associated impacts to natural resources, cultural resources, and economic conditions in rail corridors impacted by the GPT project.

2. The EIS should include analysis of health impacts of additional train traffic in the City of Sumner as well as elsewhere along likely rail corridors associated with the project. Such analysis should include examination and quantification of the impacts of coal dust, increased emissions from train locomotives, increased emissions from cars and trucks idling at rail crossings as trains pass, the health effects of chronic noise from trains, and the increased likely hood of pedestrian and automobile versus train collisions. Health impacts should also be considered to include the potential delay in emergency response attributable to added delay at road/rail crossings. All health related impacts should be addressed through a Health Impact Assessment completed by an independent third party.


3. The EIS should analyze the social impacts of the GPT project. This analysis should include detailed and realistic assessment of the impact to quality of life, developability, and economic attractiveness in areas along the likely rail corridor due to increased rail activity associated with the project. Necessary analysis includes study of the impact of increased rail activity on the potential for new business to locate near the corridor and impact on the future development of areas with existing industrial and commercial infrastructure due to increased rail activity.

4. The EIS should analyze the economic impacts of the GPT. This analysis should consider and quantify the likely trade-off associated with jobs generated at the GPT versus jobs that may be lost along the corridor due to the various impacts of increased rail traffic. This analysis should consider the potential loss of both existing jobs and the loss of competitiveness for future jobs suffered in areas subjected to delay, noise, and other impacts associated with increased rail activity. This analysis may be in the form of a cost-benefit analysis as discussed in WAC 197-11-450.

5. The EIS should analyze the cost of each specific necessary impact mitigation measure associated with the GPT. The estimated costs and sources of funding for impact mitigation measures set forth by the EIS should be identified and the likely financial impact on the taxpayers of each community and unit of local government along the likely rail corridor associated with these measures should be estimated. The City of Sumner asks that the cost of mitigation measures such as grade-separated rail crossings and/or other street crossing improvements, wayside-horns, noise attenuation walls, business or residential displacement, and other similar potential measures be specifically provided for all areas within the City of Sumner and its Urban Growth Area.

6. The EIS should analyze the impacts of the GPT on the City of Sumner’s comprehensive plan goals and standards and related zoning provisions. This analysis should include at a minimum impacts on the potential to successfully attract and develop mixed-use/transit oriented development near the BNSF rail line and Sounder commuter rail station, the impact to adopted traffic Levels of Service (LOS) at nearby intersections and street segments. This analysis should include the impacts on Sounder ridership and associated investments in commuter infrastructure.

The City of Sumner looks forward to the inclusion of the preceding issues in the scope of the upcoming project EIS. Please include the City on the notification list employed for soliciting comments on the Draft EIS when it is published.

Sincerely,
Dave Enslow, Mayor

cc: City Council members
Paul Rogerson, AICP, SEPA Responsible Official, City of Sumner

City of Blaine N/A (#3281)

Date Submitted: 11/20/2012
Location: Blaine, WA
Comment:
See attached.
Attached Files:

City of Kent City of Kent (#7979)

Date Submitted: 01/16/2013
Location: Kent, WA
Comment:
Attached is a letter from the City of Kent, signed by the Mayor and all Councilmembers, expressing the City's concerns about the potential increase of coal trains passing through our city.

If you have any questions about our comment letter, please contact Cathy Mooney, Senior Transportation Planner at the phone or email shown above.

Thank you.
Attached Files:

Craig Kenworthy (Puget Sound Clean Air Agency) (#9039)

Date Submitted: 01/18/2013
Comment:
Please see attached letter
Attached Files:

Dan Newhouse (Washington Dept of Agriculture) (#12161)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Location: Olympia, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

David Danner (Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission) (#12237)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Location: Olympia, WA
Comment:
See Attached
Attached Image:


Deborah Peavler-Stewart (HUD) (#11981)

Date Submitted: 01/21/13
Location: Seattle, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Image:

Debra Clemens (Cheney Public Schools) (#12166)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Location: Cheney, WA
Comment:
To Whom It May Concern,

Attached is the letter which our Superintendent of Schools mailed on Friday.

We know the end of the comment period is 5:00 p.m. today, and wanted to be certain our comments reached you.

Thank you in advance for your consideration of our school district’s concerns.

Sharon Throop
Asst. to the Superintendent
Cheney Public Schools
Desk 509-559-4502
Fax 509-559-4508
Attached Files:

Dennis McLerran (US EPA Region 10) (#12157)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Location: Seattle, WA
Comment:
Randel,

Our final signed scoping comments for the Gateway Pacific Terminal and Custer Rail Spur Projects.



Erik Peterson
Office of Ecosystems, Tribal and Public Affairs EPA Region 10 - Seattle peterson.erik@epa.gov
206-553-6382
Attached Files:

Diana Kincaid (#8265)

Date Submitted: 01/17/2013
Location: Seattle, WA
Comment:
This EIS comment letter is from the Seattle Board of Park Commissioners with map and Excel spreadsheet attached. A copy has also been mailed. Thank you. Michele/Sandy Brooks Park Board Coordinator
Attached Files:

Diana Kincaid (Chair, Seattle Board of Parks Commissioners) (#11766)

Date Submitted: 01/21/13
Location: Seattle, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Dianne White (#11828)

Date Submitted: 01/22/2013
Location: Stanwood, WA
Comment:
Please see the attached letter. Thank you.
Attached Files:

Eric Berg (City of Sedro Woolley) (#7500)

Date Submitted: 01/05/13
Location: Sedro-Woolley, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Image:

Gloria Hirashima (#5054)

Date Submitted: 12/17/12
Location: Marysville, WA
Comment:
Attached are the City of Marysville’s scoping comments for the proposed Gateway Terminal at Cherry Point.

Thank you

Cheryl Dungan
Senior Planner
City of Marysville | 80 Columbia Ave, Marysville, WA 98270
Direct Line (360) 363-8206 | Fax (360) 651-5099
Attached Files:

Gretchen Rupp (Gallatin, MT City-County Board of Health) (#2950)

Date Submitted: 11/12/12
Location: Bozeman, MT
Comment:
see attached
Attached Image:

Jana Hanson (City of Mount Vernon) (#4927)

Date Submitted: 12/14/12
Location: City of Mount Vernon, WA
Comment:
See attached
Attached Files:

Jeffrey Hegedus (#4085)

Date Submitted: 12/04/12
Comment:
The attached photo was presented at the Ferndale scoping meeting. I am forwarding to you as public comment to inform the study of GPT terminal fugitive coal dust impacts. Thank you.

Jeffrey A. Hegedus, MS, RS | Environmental Health Supervisor
Whatcom County Health Department
Leading the community in promoting health and preventing disease

www.whatcomcounty.com\health
Public Health: Always Working for a Safer and Healthier Whatcom County

Information sent via the internet may be subject to disclosure under the Public Records Act. Whatcom County cannot guarantee that e-mail messages will remain private.

Hi Jeff,
The photo was taken 4/12/2012 by Jerry Biernes, a Canadian photographer. It and some of Jerry's other Westshore photos were published in The Delta Optimist. Jerry has given us permission to use all of them. I appreciate your interest.
Thank-you,
Paula Rotondi
Birch Bay
Attached Image:

Jill Boudream (City of Mount Vernon) (#11735)

Date Submitted: 01/21/13
Location: Mount Vernon, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Jill Boudreau (Mayor of Mount Vernon) (#4925)

Date Submitted: 12/14/12
Location: Mount Vernon, WA
Comment:
The attached letter has been sent certified mail as well to:

GPT/Custer Spur EIS
c/o CH2M HILL
1100 112th Avenue NE, Suite 400
Bellevue, WA 98004

Thank you.

Jana Hanson, Director
City of Mount Vernon
Community & Economic Development Department PO Box 809 / 910 Cleveland Avenue Mount Vernon, WA 98273-0809
Phone: (360) 336-6214
Fax: (360) 336-6283
Attached Files:

Joe Marine (Mayor of Mukilteo) (#4218)

Date Submitted: 12/07/12
Location: Mukilteo, WA
Comment:
Please find attached Mayor Marine's letter dated December 7, 2012.
Thank you

Shawna Gossett, C.P.T.
Permit Services Supervisor
City of Mukilteo
(425) 263-8060
Attached Files:

John Spencer (City of North Bonneville) (#8839)

Date Submitted: 01/16/13
Comment:
Please find attached a resolution passed by our city council last week regarding the gateway project.

John Spencer
Administrator / Clerk / Treasurer
City of North Bonneville
(509) 427-8182
Attached Files:

Jori Burnett (City of Ferndale SEPA Official) (#5883)

Date Submitted: 01/02/13
Location: Ferndale, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Julie Underwood (City of Shoreline) (#12235)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Location: Shoreline, WA
Comment:
See Attached
Attached Files:

Kelli Linville (City of Bellingham Mayor) (#11676)

Date Submitted: 01/21/13
Location: Bellingham, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Kelli Linville (Mayor of Bellingham) (#5091)

Date Submitted: 12/15/12
Location: Bellingham, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Ken Berg (US Fish and Wildlife Service) (#12155)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Location: Lacey, WA
Comment:
Mr. Randle,

I am sending the attached document on behalf of Nancy Brennan-Dubbs, Fish & Wildlife Biologist, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.


--------------------------------------------------
Neil Quackenbush
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
510 Desmond Drive SE, Suite 102
Lacey, WA 98503
360.753.4653
Attached Files:

Kevin Yamamoto (#11818)

Date Submitted: 01/22/2013
Location: Puyallup, WA
Comment:
Co-Lead Agency Representatives:

The City of Puyallup submits its scoping comments in the attached letter (PDF), which is dated January 17, 2013. Would you please confirm that you have received the attachment?

Sincerely,

Kevin J. Yamamoto
City Attorney
Attached Files:

Kevn & Jerry & Bill Ware & Kaufman & Shuler (Port of Skagit) (#2948)

Date Submitted: 11/12/12
Location: Burlington, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Image:

Linda Beacham (#8504)

Date Submitted: 01/17/2013
Location: Mount Vernon, WA
Comment:
It has come our our attention the attached correction letter sent to you December 12, 2012 did not replace the original letter that currently appears on your website. Please post the attached letter with attachments that references 8 railroad crossings within the City of Mount Vernon. Please contact me if there are questions. I will be in the office until 5 pm today and return on Tuesday, January 22nd. Thank you very much for your prompt attention to this request. Sincerely,
Linda Beacham
City of Mount Vernon
360-336-6214
Attached Files:

Lynn Burditt (US Forest Service, Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area) (#8611)

Date Submitted: 01/14/13
Location: Hood River, OR
Comment:
To Whom It May Concern,

Please find the attached comments on the Gateway Pacific EIS from the US Forest Service, Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. Thank you for this opportunity to comment.


Sincerely,

Christine Plourde
Landscape Architect
Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area
902 Wasco Avenue, Suite 200
Hood River, OR 97031
cplourde@fs.fed.us
(541) 308-1713
Attached Files:

Marc Daily (#7950)

Date Submitted: 01/16/2013
Location: Tacoma, WA
Comment:
See attached comment letter.
Attached Files:

Mark Asmundson (#11389)

Date Submitted: 01/22/2013
Location: Mount Vernon, WA
Comment:
Attached are comments from the Northwest Clean Air Agency. A hard copy will follow by U.S. mail.
Attached Files:

Mary Selecky (WA Dept. of Health) (#12167)

Date Submitted: 01/18/13
Location: Olympia, WA
Comment:
(see attached)

Mary C. Selecky, Secretary
Washington State Department of Health
PO Box 47890
Olympia WA 98504-7890
360.236.4030 / FAX 360.586.7424
Attached Files:

Michael Berres (Ferndale School District) (#3633)

Date Submitted: 11/27/12
Location: Ferndale, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Image:

Michael Jones (City of Blaine SEPA Official) (#5686)

Date Submitted: 12/11/12
Location: Blaine, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Mitchell Kneipp (for Sean Guard, Mayor) (#11459)

Date Submitted: 01/22/2013
Location: Washougal, WA
Comment:
Greetings.

On March 19, 2012, the Washougal City Council unanimously approved a Resolution calling on the Washington State Department of Ecology, the US Army Corp of Engineers and local county jurisdictions to make the City of Washougal a “party of record” and commenter on the proposed coal export facilities in Bellingham and Longview.

This Resolution, which is attached, is specific to the impact the additional trainloads of coal, estimated to be 20-40 additional trains per day, each train up to 1.5 miles long each. These impacts include the delays that vehicle traffic will have at our five at-grade crossings (concerns of significant vehicle emissions from idling vehicles) as trains move through Washougal and especially delays to our emergency response vehicles should the at-grade crossings be blocked. In addition, the potential impact that loose coal dust will have on our community and environment, whether it blows out of the top of the uncovered rail cars or it seeps out the bottoms of the rail cars.

Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad has noted themselves that each railcar can lose between 500 – 2,000 pounds of coal product while in transit from the Powder River Basin to Bellingham, over a 1,000 mile trip. My office in city hall is literally 300 feet away from the rail lines and I watch these trains go by on a daily basis.

The City requests that the scoping of the EIS address the significant unavoidable adverse impacts to the City of Washougal, and other communities that these trains will travel through, including but not limited to impacts from; 1) vehicle emissions from idling vehicles at blocked at-grade crossings; 2) emergency response delays at blocked at-grade crossings; and 3) the impact of coal dust on the community and environment. The EIS should address ways to avoid, minimize and mitigate the effects of these impacts on our community.

The City of Washougal does not want to stand in the way of commerce or exports; in fact we applaud companies who are employing people. We just want to make sure that our community and residents will not have any adverse impacts from the transportation of these materials and that any impacts will be reasonably mitigated.

As the Mayor of a community that is literally split geographically by the BNSF rail lines, I will be reaching out to the Mayors of other communities along the BNSF line to be sure we are kept informed of the progress and mitigations of these projects.

I appreciate any space that you can give to this important issue and I welcome any questions that you may have.

Respectfully,

Sean Guard
Mayor
City of Washougal
Attached Files:

Peter Goldmark (WA DNR) (#12164)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Comment:
Greetings,
Please find DNR’s scoping comments on the GPT/Custer Spur proposal. Thank you.


Cyrilla Cook, AICP
Policy Unit Supervisor
Aquatic Resources Division
Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR)
360-902-1080
cyrilla.cook@dnr.wa.gov
www.dnr.wa.gov
Attached Files:

Phil Williams (#11530)

Date Submitted: 01/22/2013
Location: Edmonds, WA
Comment:
I am the Public Works and Utilities Director for the City of Edmonds. I am submitting the following information and requests electronically on behalf of the City. The letter has also be mailed to the address specified.

January 18th, 2013

To: Co-lead agencies for the subject EIS
GPT/BNSF Custer Spur EIS Co-Lead Agencies
c/o CH2M HILL
1100 112th Avenue NE, Suite 400
Bellevue, WA 98004

Alice Kelly
Northwest Regional Office, Department of Ecology

Randel Perry
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Regulatory Branch
Northwest Field Office

Tyler Schroeder
Planning and Development Services, Whatcom County
RE: GPT/BNSF Custer Spur EIS
From: City of Edmonds
Subject: Comments regarding scoping

The City of Edmonds wishes to provide comment regarding the scope of the subject EIS being prepared by the Department of Ecology (Ecology), the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACOE), and Whatcom County as co-lead agencies.

Edmonds City Council adopted resolution No. 1280 on July 13th, 2012 expressing significant concerns about the potential for increased rail traffic related to the Gateway Pacific Terminal proposed by SSA Marine for Cherry Point in Whatcom County. A copy of that resolution is attached. We ask that it specifically be made a part of the scoping summary report.

Edmonds has 4 ½ miles of shoreline on Puget Sound. Throughout that distance BNSF operates either a single rail line or a double track system. BNSF is in the process of converting their entire frontage in Edmonds to a double track system but the timing of that project has not been released by BNSF. It would appear, based on information made available to date, that virtually all freight destined for shipment from this proposed terminal would pass through Edmonds on existing BNSF rail lines. This trackage currently handles an average of 45 trains each day, including both freight and passenger trains. Each movement through Edmonds blocks both Dayton and Main streets either in sequence (passenger trains) or simultaneously (freight trains). This existing level of train traffic already creates a number of significant issues for our citizens and visitors.

Emergency Response

When a train passes one of Edmonds’ at-grade crossings emergency vehicles must wait for it to clear before a response can be made. This includes law enforcement, fire suppression, and paramedic/ambulance services. The portion of Edmonds cut-off by passing trains includes the Edmonds Senior Center, two City parks, a nationally known dive park, four restaurants, the Port of Edmonds with 897 slips, a busy Dog Park, a sizeable office building, and residential condominiums. Accounting for the average speed of freight and passenger trains through Edmonds and their respective average lengths, this creates a total of approximately 4 ½ hours of blockage each day with more than 90% of that from freight trains. That is 4 ½ hours each day where emergency responders can’t get to those who need their services. This is the current situation. Any further reduction in response times would be unacceptable. Train traffic is estimated to grow from 45 trains per day (TPD) to 70 TPD by 2020 and 104 TPD by 2030. The 9-18 coal trains necessary to supply the proposed terminal analyzed by this EIS is the single biggest, identifiable block of new rail traffic being proposed. Now is the time to analyze the impacts of rail traffic growth on Cities that host BNSF rail lines. There may never be another opportunity to do so. Train traffic is likely to grow slowly over time to the levels cited above. It is quite possible we won’t see another major EIS on a new facility as dependent on rail as this one is. The EIS process for this project needs to thoroughly evaluate the environmental, social, economic, and transportation impacts that are clearly foreseeable when looked at as part of the underlying growth of rail traffic in Washington State. This is an issue of public safety for the City of Edmonds and several other cities in our state.

Edmonds requests the scope of the EIS include a detailed study of the baseline interference to traffic patterns between trains and vehicle traffic at both Dayton and Main streets and then project the change in those patterns out to the year 2030, including, but not limited to, projected coal train traffic. The study should identify possible alternatives to resolving these conflicts which can be analyzed as possible mitigation for this project.

Ferry Traffic Interruption

Edmonds hosts the only remaining location where ferry loading and unloading operations are at grade over BNSF rail lines. This results in significant and increasing delays to all modes of travel. With train traffic increasing over time this problem will become only more acute. The Edmonds/Kingston route carries more vehicle traffic than any other route in the Washington State ferry system (2010/2011 totals). It also carries nearly 4 million passengers each year, second only to the Bainbridge Island crossing. This connection is a critical part of the Puget Sound transportation network for commuting, tourism, and freight. The additional delays inherent to increased rail traffic, particularly by long, relatively slow coal trains, will be considerable. Unmitigated, these delays could begin to impact ferry schedules and capacity. The volume of both passengers and vehicles choosing to use the ferry system could be reduced as a result. This would reduce revenues to the system and place more vehicles on our busy highways. There is also an issue of safety at these two crossings. Edmonds has experienced two train/vehicle accidents in the last three months, one where a passenger train struck a very large semi-tractor trailer at Main Street illustrating the significant safety concerns at this location. This issue needs additional and detailed analysis leading to specific proposals to eliminate this at-grade conflict. The EIS should study these interferences with Ferry system operations and make reliable projections based on expected conditions out to 2030. This information can be used in conversations regarding mitigation should the project continue to move forward.

Noise

The 45 trains that come through Edmonds each day blow their whistle at each of our two crossings. That is a total of eight for each train or 360 high-intensity blasts every 24 hours which could rise to over 800 in the future. These horns are required by the FRA to put out a minimum sound pressure level of 96 dBA and a maximum of 110 dBA at a 100 foot distance in front of the train. This is occurring in an area where over two million cars and four million people transit, many of them twice each day. The most acute exposures are likely to be to walk-on ferry riders, people waiting for a Sounder or Amtrak train, and citizens trying to enjoy the public amenities at Edmonds’ waterfront parks. These noise levels are well above levels that can cause hearing loss to those not wearing hearing protection. It is also loud enough, according to available research, to cause significant interruption to normal conversation as much as a mile and a half from the track. No comprehensive study has been conducted in Edmonds that measures the sound level and impacts of train whistles on hearing loss, sleep patterns, real estate prices, or stress levels. Such a study should be completed that is Edmonds-specific and projects to 2030 train traffic levels so that noise abatement strategies can be discussed intelligently during deliberations about mitigation. In the alternative, project proponents should commit to the establishment of a complete “Quiet Zone” for downtown Edmonds two crossings that incorporates all of the available strategies to enhance pedestrian and vehicle safety while eliminating the need for train whistles.
Attached Files:

Richard Hansen (City of Puyallup Mayor) (#13910)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Location: Puyallup, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Robert Coffey et al (Mount Vernon School District) (#7672)

Date Submitted: 01/09/13
Location: Mount Vernon, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Image:

Robert Whitlam (SHPO) (#3551)

Date Submitted: 11/28/12
Location: Olympia, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Robert Zimmerman (#11717)

Date Submitted: 01/22/2013
Location: Monroe, WA
Comment:
These scoping comments are submitted to you in my capacity as Mayor of the City of Monroe, Washington. While the project proposal, as submitted by the project proponents, is limited to 1,200 acres at Cherry Point, the City of Monroe will also suffer from potentially significant adverse environmental impacts, due to the increase in train traffic through the center of Monroe.
The following specific scoping comments are provided for consideration and inclusion in the Final Scoping Document, in order to inform the various alternatives to be studied in the EIS.
1. Please analyze the cumulative impacts of all currently proposed coal export facilities and/or dry bulk commodity terminals within Washington and Oregon in a Cumulative Impact Analysis pursuant to the National Environmental Protection Act. Specifically, please analyze the cumulative impact to existing freight and passenger train traffic capacity in Washington State as well as the cumulative impacts to natural and cultural resources resulting from the increase in freight train trips through the City of Monroe. In addition to the proposed coal terminal, the BP Refinery located within the Cherry Point Industrial Area has applied for permits to develop new railroad (loop) infrastructure that is intended to accommodate a planned for increase in trains carrying crude oil from the Midwest to their facilities at Cherry Point. This one additional train every two days can be expected to travel on the BNSF line traveling through the City of Monroe and then to the refinery itself. Please include this additional train traffic in the Cumulative Impact Analysis.
2. Please analyze the increase in impacts to the health and welfare of the citizens of Monroe, including impacts from diesel emissions from trains, noise, and the potential for increased rail/car and rail/pedestrian accidents through a comprehensive independent third-party Health Impact Assessment.
3. Please analyze the impacts to existing freight train and passenger train service, including impacts to shared capacity by the addition of up to nine additional bulk-commodity train trips per day on Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) railroad infrastructure through the City of Monroe.
The following comments relate to the City's potentially affected resources. The City expects these resources to be adversely impacted by the increase of up to nine additional freight train trips traveling through the City of Monroe every day at the time of full build out of the GPT. We request that the "increase" in impacts resulting from this action be analyzed through the EIS process for each element list below.
1. Please analyze the increase in impacts within an EIS to the following economic elements:
• Existing and planned land use and economic development potential within the City's Central Business District, Fryelands Area, and North Kelsey Area; all of which have development potential that will be impacted as a result of additional, longer, and more frequent freight train trips;
• Property values and assessments and the impacts to services resulting from a potential decrease in property tax revenue;
• Job retention and creation within the City of Monroe;
• Associated costs of transportation improvements necessary to mitigate safety congestion and access issues resulting from an increase in freight train trips as part of the GPT proposal.
2. Please analyze the increase in impacts within an EIS on to the following public safety elements:
• Response times and services of Monroe Fire District #3 and the City of Monroe Police Department;
• Safety of the general public resulting from idling locomotives and train derailments or collisions;
• Impacts resulting from accelerated wear and tear on the rails themselves, ties, supporting ballast, bridges, and crossings.
• Public access issues, including delays in emergency response time and operational access, caused by increased rail traffic;
• Impacts of trains idling to adjacent park land, including public access, emergencies and operational access, noise, and dust;
3. Please analyze the increase in impacts within an EIS on the following mobility elements:
• Crossing safety for pedestrians, bicyclists, transit buses, automobiles, and freight delivery vehicles;
• Traffic congestion backing up into other intersections, blocking access to side streets, alleys, and driveways;
• The following at-grade street crossings all within the City limits:
 Fryelands Boulevard
 179th Avenue SE
 North Kelsey Street
 Lewis Street/SR 203
 East Main Street
As Mayor of the City of Monroe, I look forward to the inclusion of the study of these potential impacts as part of the GPT project EIS.


Looking forward,

Robert G. Zimmerman
Mayor

Rogers Weed (#11936)

Date Submitted: 01/22/2013
Location: Olympia, WA
Comment:
Thank you for the opportunity to comment on your scope.
Attached Files:

San Juan County Council (#2768)

Date Submitted: 11/03/12
Location: Friday Harbor, WA
Comment:
See attached.
Attached Files:

Sara Jensen (#8315)

Date Submitted: 01/17/2013
Comment:
Attached please find EIS Scoping Comments on the proposed Cherry Point Terminal from the Department of Housing and Urban Development Region X Environmental Officer.
Attached Files:

scott thomas (#7295)

Date Submitted: 01/14/2013
Location: burlington, wa
Comment:
Please see comments contained in attached pdf.
Attached Files:

Shea Bettwy (#8437)

Date Submitted: 01/17/2013
Location: Washington, DC
Comment:
Please find the attached PDF. Thank you.
Attached Files:

Stephen Buxbaum (Mayor, City of Olympia) (#8883)

Date Submitted: 01/16/13
Location: Olympia, WA
Comment:
Attached is a letter signed by Olympia Mayor Stephen H. Buxbaum regarding this issue.

Mary Nolan
Executive Secretary
City of Olympia
PO Box 1967
Olympia WA 98507
360-753-8244

Please note all emails may be considered as public records.
Attached Files:

Stephen Reinmuth (WSDOT) (#11952)

Date Submitted: 01/15/13
Location: Olympia, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Steve Caldwell (City of Livingston) (#12233)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Location: Livingston, MT
Comment:
See Attached
Attached Image:

Steve Romines (#9075)

Date Submitted: 01/18/2013
Location: Olympia, WA
Comment:
The following is a recommendation regarding citizen’s concerned about increased Emergency Medical (or other emergency service Fire/Law Enforcement) vehicle response time as a consequence of increases in large and more frequent coal trains crossing (20 additional trains) per day through Thurston County.

There would be an impact to emergency vehicles needing to traverse at-grade rail crossings with an increase in frequency of long trains. To determine the level of impact the increased rail traffic with long trains would have on emergency medical response, an impedance analysis by the approving body perform should be performed. The impedance analysis could help determine the expected increase in emergency vehicle response time for at-grade rail crossings.

Suggestion: Perform emergency vehicle impedance analysis. The minimum information necessary to determine the impact of the additional trains impeding emergency vehicle crossings are:
1. time of day/schedule for all trains and additional new trains,
2. number of trains per day,
3. length of trains,
4. average speed of travel for each train type including the additional new trains
5. any circumstances that would impair train transit/speed (e.g. traversing a crossing before a train back to speed if slowed for a crossing and especially switching of tracks).
Attached Files:

Steven Landino (US Dept of Commerce, Washington State Habitat Office, NOAA) (#7735)

Date Submitted: 01/05/13
Location: Lacey, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

Steven Sarkozy (City of Bellevue) (#12171)

Date Submitted: 01/18/13
Location: Bellevue, WA
Comment:
Please see the attached letter from Bellevue City Manager Steve Sarkozy regarding the NEPA/SEPA analysis of the Gateway Pacific Terminal project.

Thank you.

Susan Covay
Assistant to the Intergovt. Relations Director
City Manager’s Office
City of Bellevue
425-452-5265
scovay@bellevuewa.gov
Attached Files:

Suzette Cooke (City of Kent Mayor) (#11728)

Date Submitted: 01/17/13
Location: Kent, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Files:

TOM TRULOVE (#8908)

Date Submitted: 01/18/2013
Location: CHENEY, WA
Comment:
Please see my letter dated January 18, 2013, attached here in pdf format.
Attached Files:

Tom Trulove (Cheny Office of the Mayor)) (#12234)

Date Submitted: 01/22/13
Location: Cheney, WA
Comment:
See Attached
Attached Image:

Tom Trulove (Mayor) (#8596)

Date Submitted: 01/17/2013
Location: Cheney, WA
Comment:
Thank you for the opportunity to offer these comments regarding the scope of the draft environmental impact statement (DEIS) addressing the Gateway Pacific Terminal Project.

Cheney, Washington, is located approximately 17 miles southwest of Spokane and is bisected by mainline tracks for both the Union Pacific (UP) and Burlington Northern/Santa Fee (BNSF) railroads. Its population includes slightly less than 11,000 permanent residents and, during the school year, a significant number of students attending Eastern Washington University (fall 2012 enrollment is 12,587).

We are concerned about the additional rail traffic that would occur through the city were the Gateway Pacific Terminal Project to be built. Currently there are four intersections within the city limits where roads cross the BNSF rails. The UP rails involve three crossings within, and one just outside, the city limits. All of these crossings are at grade.

We request that the DEIS scope include an analysis of the impacts of added rail traffic that would result if the Gateway Pacific Terminal Project were to be built. These impacts would include delays at rail crossings, resulting in increased response times for emergency services, traffic congestion and emissions from waiting vehicles. Other impacts that should be considered include increased emissions from diesel locomotives, train noise (including both rail noise and train horns), and the potential consequences of a derailment or train/vehicle collision within the city.

In addition to the direct impacts of the Gateway Pacific Terminal Project, we request you also conduct a cumulative impact analysis that includes consideration of both existing rail traffic and any additional rail transport effects in Cheney resulting from other reasonably foreseeable future rail terminal projects that could further increase rail traffic through Cheney. Specifically, this should include impacts associated with the construction of the proposed Morrow Pacific Coal Export Terminal Project to be built by Ambre Energy with a projected completion date in 2014 and the Ambre Millennium Bulk Terminals proposed for construction near Longview, Washington. It is our understanding that these projects would depend on additional rail shipments over the tracks bisecting Cheney.

Thank you for your attention to these requests and please add the following to your project mail list:

Ms. Arlene Fisher, ICMA-CM
City Administrator
609 Second Street
Cheney, WA 99004

Whatcom County Marine Resources Committee (#9074)

Date Submitted: 01/18/2013
Location: Bellingham, WA
Comment:
Please see attached document. The original document was also sent via USPS on 1/18/13.
Attached Files:

William Dameworth (Spokane Regional Clean Air Agency) (#5903)

Date Submitted: 01/02/13
Location: Spokane, WA
Comment:
see attached
Attached Image: