This site was actively used over the period 2005-2011 as the necessary technical and environmental studies to permit the Kenosha-Racine-Milwaukee (KRM) commuter rail project to proceed to implementation were conducted. These studies were initiated in 2005 by an Intergovernmental Partnership of the County Executives and Mayors of Kenosha, Milwaukee, and Racine, the Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, and the Chairman of the Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission. In July 2009, the studies were continued by the Southeastern Regional Transit Authority (SERTA), which was created by the Wisconsin State Legislature and Governor in the 2009-2011 Wisconsin State budget specifically to oversee the development of a KRM commuter rail service. In June 2011, the State Legislature and Governor repealed the State law creating SERTA, requiring SERTA to dissolve in September 2011, and resulting in the indefinite postponement of the KRM commuter rail studies. As such, links within the site relating to submittal of comments and questions, and sign-up for email updates have been de-activated.
Alternatives Analysis/Draft Environmental Impact Statement
As part of the Environmental Impact Statement and Project Development phase of the KRM Alternatives Analysis, a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) has been prepared by the Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission, on behalf of an Intergovernmental Partnership (IGP) of the Counties and Cities of Kenosha, Racine and Milwaukee, the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WISDOT), and the Regional Planning Commission. The DEIS is one necessary component of this phase, and has been approved by the Federal Transit Administration (FTA).
The other component is the Alternatives Analysis, which involves reviewing and refining the commuter rail and bus alternatives considered to date, and recommending one for implementation. The Alternatives Analysis process is described in the DEIS document, culminating in the selection of the Commuter Rail Alternative as the Locally Preferred Alternative by the KRM Steering Committee in November of 2006. The commuter rail and bus alternatives were further refined in June 2010, with an application submitted by the Southeastern Regional Transit Authority (SERTA) to the FTA requesting permission to initiate Preliminary Engineering (PE) under the FTA’s discretionary “New Starts” funding program. FTA funding will depend on how the project compares to other similar projects nationwide based on FTA project criteria, including cost effectiveness. To view or download the full application, click on the following link:
Should the FTA approve the “New Starts” application, the SERTA Board of Directors would decide whether or not to initiate PE on a KRM commuter rail line. FTA permission to enter PE is necessary to continue project development on a KRM commuter rail line, and to potentially obtain an FTA “New Starts” discretionary grant to provide the Federal share of costs associated with implementing the line. A Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) would also be prepared during PE.
The DEIS has been prepared and filed according to the State and National Environmental Policy Acts and is now available for public comment. The document describes a full range of commuter rail and bus alternatives, the affected environment, and an analysis of the environmental impacts of each alternative in the Kenosha-Racine-Milwaukee corridor. The analysis includes the effects on land use, noise, vibration, and air quality, as well as the impacts on natural resources such as ecosystems and water resources. To view or download the full document, click on the following link:
Three public hearings were held September 14-16, 2009, in the Cities of Racine, Kenosha, and Milwaukee, respectively, to obtain comments on the DEIS. The public hearings were conducted in “open house” format, with exhibits on display and project staff available to answer questions about the DEIS or any other aspect of the project. A short project presentation was also made during each hearing.
At the hearings, attendees were able to provide written comments or give oral comments to court reporters at any time during the two hour time frame. In addition, written comments were accepted through October 5, 2009. Although the public comment period has ended, comments regarding any aspect of the project are always welcome, and can be sent via the KRM website, or by email, mail, or fax:
Record of Public Comments on the KRM DEIS
A record of public comments received on the DEIS was recently prepared. This record includes a summary of the written and oral comments received during the formal public comment period, as well as the comments themselves, attendance records from the public hearings, materials announcing those hearings, materials distributed at those hearings, and newspaper articles pertaining to the DEIS. To view the record of public comments, click on this link:
Public Hearing Display Boards
To view the display boards used at the September 2009 public hearings, click on this link:
Public Hearing Presentation
To view the presentation given at each of the September 2009 public hearings, click on this link:
Public Viewing Locations for the Draft Environmental Impact Statement
In addition to the groups, agencies, organizations, and individuals directly receiving copies, the KRM DEIS was also made available for review and comment at the following public locations by any individual, citizen group, or public agency. The DEIS can still be reviewed at these locations during normal business hours.
Federal, State, and Regional Offices
Local Libraries in the KRM Corridor
The newest edition of the project newsletter summarizes the Alternatives Analysis/Draft Environmental Impact Statement, including descriptions of the alternatives considered and the Locally Preferred Alternative, a summary of the costs and benefits of the Commuter Rail Alternative, and the next steps for the project. To view or download this newsletter, click on the following link:
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