County Actions

Dutchess County Department of Public Works, Poughkeepsie, New York

Many Dutchess County departments play a role in transportation, from the obvious (like Public Works and Transit) to the less so (like the Office for the Aging and Health). We at the DCTC can make all kinds of plans, but without our partners across county government, little can happen. Below, we recommend practices for Dutchess County agencies to pursue to improve transportation safety, reliability, and access to basic needs.

1. Improve Safe Access

  1. Develop and implement a County ADA transition plan.
    • County Public Works, County Planning, ThinkDifferently, Human Rights, DCTC
  2. Consider developing a County Vision Zero policy, which would focus on eliminating traffic deaths and severe injuries through a proactive, multi-departmental effort to create safer streets.
    • County Legislature, County Public Works, Traffic Safety, County Planning, DCTC, Sheriff, Health
  3. Continue to partner with DCTC to analyze high-crash locations and conduct safety assessments on County roads.
    • County Public Works, Traffic Safety
  4. Work with DCTC to identify County roads with high-end speeding and consider speed limit reductions, road design changes, and speed enforcement programs to change driver behavior.
    • County Public Works, Sheriff, Traffic Safety
  5. Provide ADA access at all bus stops and provide sidewalk connections where feasible.
    • County Public Transit (with road owners)
  6. Continue to partner with DCTC to implement the County’s Complete Streets policy through the highway access permit process, public education efforts, and Universal Accessibility projects on County roads.
    • County Public Works, Aging, Health, Planning, Traffic Safety, Transit
  7. Pursue opportunities to expand the County’s rail trail network and facilitate connections to State and local trails
    • County Public Works, Planning, DCTC

2. Improve Reliable Access

  1. Maintain existing infrastructure before building new, maximize efficiency before adding capacity, and reallocate excess capacity where possible.
    • County Public Works
  2. Develop resiliency ratings for infrastructure, identify flood-prone infrastructure, and incorporate these into an infrastructure resiliency plan. Coordinate with the County’s Hazard Mitigation Plan as feasible.
    • County Public Works, County Planning, DCTC, Emergency Response
  3. Continue to consider climate change (particularly flooding) when designing bridge and culvert replacement projects.
    • County Public Works
  4. Continue to incorporate Electric Vehicles (EVs) into County fleets and promote the installation of EV infrastructure, especially charging stations.
    • County Public Works, Public Transit, Central Services, Planning
  5. Prioritize fixed-route transit improvements (higher frequency, more service hours) in areas with sufficient population or job densities.
    • County Public Transit
  6. Consider alternate transit models in areas that don’t support fixed-route service.
    • County Public Transit
  7. Improve transit ridership data collection (e.g. automatic passenger counters) to analyze rider trends and improve service.
    • County Public Transit

3. Improve Access to Basic Needs

  1. Continue to prioritize access to basic needs (housing, jobs, education, goods & services, recreation) when evaluating bus transit service changes.
    • County Public Transit
  2. Develop a consistent program for large employers (including County government and colleges) to purchase bulk transit passes for employees as an incentive to reduce vehicle trips.
    • County Legislature
  3. Expand travel options for off-peak trips to key job centers.
    • County Public Transit
  4. Promote economic development and business opportunities in existing centers to minimize transportation costs and enhance access.
    • County Executive/Economic Development
  5. Improve bus access to train stations, possibly through fixed-route or on-demand services.
    • County Public Transit (with MTA)
  6. Coordinate with other transportation providers, including human service agencies, to improve access for older adults, persons with disabilities, and other vulnerable populations.
  7. Work with municipalities and other partners to promote a mix of housing types that capitalize on existing infrastructure and support walking, bicycling, and transit, particularly in existing centers such as cities, town centers, and villages.
    • County Planning, County Executive, County Legislature

We realize that these actions take time and may not happen all at once. In some respects, that’s okay – Moving Dutchess Forward is a 25-year plan. Nevertheless, we intend to work closely with Dutchess County departments to progress these recommendations, such that when we update this plan, we can report to you that progress has been made.