Tri-State Transportation and Logistics Council
The In 2016, OKI continued its membership in this young freight industry trade association that includes business members, government agencies, chambers of commerce, port authorities, educational institutions and business support services. The Council works for strategic regional initiatives and serves as a catalyst for economic development, a source of business connections and a resource for news on the latest industry trends. As a member, OKI staff participates in the Councils two committees: Joint Workforce and Technology/Environmental Committee and Joint Business Environment and Infrastructure Committee.
Ohio River Freight Network: M-70/StrongPorts Workshop
On March 24, 2016, OKI hosted one of four workshops convened by the US Maritime Administration (MARAD) along the M-70 Marine Highway Corridor (Ohio and Missouri rivers). America’s Marine Highways are navigable waterways that have been designated by the Secretary of Transportation and have demonstrated the ability to provide additional capacity to relieve congested landside routes serving freight and passenger movement. Each marine highway has a corridor designation that reflects the congested landside route it parallels. Hence, the I-70 Marine Highway Corridor which generally parallels Interstate 70 through Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania. The Ohio River Freight Network: M-70/StrongPorts Workshop was held to advance the opportunities of freight on the Ohio River to support freight related economic opportunity along the Ohio River and its surrounding states and region. A marine highway project is a planned service, or expansion of an existing service, on a designated Marine Highway Route, that provides new modal choices to shippers of cargo, reduces transportation costs, and provides public benefits including reduced air emissions, reduced road maintenance costs, and improved safety and resiliency impacts. The event included the participation and perspectives of over 80 public and private stakeholders from CORBA, economic development agencies, Inland Rivers, Ports & Terminals, Inc, state departments of transportation and local governments.
CORIS: Leveraging Data Innovation and P3s in Regional Freight Transportation Planning
Established by CORBA with OKI’s strong support and participation, the Regional Maritime Committee was looking for a collective action to show the world what the new Ports of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky’s businesses and communities had to offer. Knowing the group’s interest in sharing existing data, OKI staff met with key CORBA leaders and laid out a project proposal that combined the unique assets of both groups. OKI had the technological resources and staff talent to assist CORBA in creating a river-focused, interactive assets map, but needed current private sector data to create a useful mapping tool. CORBA had the relationships to engage private maritime freight operators up and down the Ohio and Licking rivers to gain access to vital maritime information. The result is CORIS (Central Ohio River Information System), which identifies key features of the Port that may be of importance to potential site selectors, users, investors, politicians and anyone in the maritime industry. OKI houses the server for CORIS and allows CORBA to host the interactive map from their website at www.corba-usa.org. CORIS is a perfect example of how the public and private sectors can partner and pull together existing resources to create a mega-marketing tool based on mega-data to promote our underutilized maritime freight industry.
Local Energy Efficiency Planning Project
In December, OKI was awarded $500,000 in funding from the Duke Class Benefit Fund to produce Community Strategic Energy Plans for eight interested local communities in southwest Ohio. To produce these plans, OKI has partnered with the Greater Cincinnati Energy Alliance. This project will run from 2017 through the end of 2019. Eligible communities are any local government (village, city, or township) in the four Ohio Counties – Butler, Clermont, Hamilton, and Warren Counties.
The final product will be eight Local Community Strategic Energy Plans that investigate energy use, impacts, and infrastructure in each community; identify local priorities and match those with existing programs. The grant will also provide funds to implement plan objectives of the local community’s choosing.
This activity will advance understanding of how energy use and infrastructure impact local communities in the region. As a region, we will also learn valuable insights about priorities related to energy at the local community level. These planning activities are listed in the Energy Planning Element of the OKI publication, Elements of an Effective Local Comprehensive Plan and are consistent with OKI’s How Do We Grow From Here Strategic Regional Policy Plan.
Fiscal Impact Analysis Model
The OKI Fiscal Impact Analysis Model (FIAM) Partnership Program provides jurisdictions in the region with an ability to compare fiscal impacts of potential future land use scenarios with existing land use. By estimating both revenues and service costs associated with land use activities, communities applying the FIAM tool in their decision making are armed with a better understanding of how a land use change is most likely going to affect their annual budget.
The OKI FIAM tool continues to attract attention from local academics. It has been featured in both undergraduate and graduate courses, and even served as the method of analysis utilized in a master’s thesis.
Current FIAM partners include, Dearborn County, and the Planning and Development Services of Kenton County – serving the cities of Covington, Crestview Hills, Edgewood, Independence, and Taylor Mill. Any community in the OKI region can participate in the FIAM program for a $1,000 initial set-up cost and $2,500 annually.
OKI’s collaboration with the Hamilton County Emergency Management Agency on the Regional Asset Verification and Emergency Network (RAVEN911) continued in 2016. The RAVEN911 system topped three-thousand registered users during 2016, including more than two-thousand users from local government and nearly a thousand users across more than 40 state and federal agencies.
The daily use of RAVEN911 will lead first responders to make more informed and decisive decisions. Whether it be a natural occurrence or a planned event, RAVEN911 contributes to quick incident recovery in the most efficient and effective ways possible.