Section 106 Consulting Parties Meeting
Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) requires federal agencies to consider the effects on historic properties of proposed projects they carry out, assist, fund, permit, license, or approve. For purposes of the NHPA, historic properties are those properties that are listed or determined to be eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. If a federal or federally assisted project has the potential to affect historic properties, a Section 106 review will take place. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (Port Authority) is requesting approval to impose and use a passenger facility charge to construct and operate an automated people mover system between LaGuardia Airport and Mets-Willets Point transit stations. Because the proposed action would include the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) approval of the imposition and use of a passenger facility charge for the proposed project, compliance with the NHPA is required. The FAA has determined that the Port Authority’s proposed alternative has the potential to affect historic properties, as stated in the Notice of Intent to Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement and Initiate Section 106 Consultation for the Proposed LaGuardia Access Improvement Project at LaGuardia Airport (LGA), New York City, Queens County, New York, published in the Federal Register on May 3, 2019.
As lead federal agency for the proposed project, the FAA is responsible for identifying consulting parties for the Section 106 review process. In addition to the FAA and the project applicant, consulting parties typically include the State Historic Preservation Officer, Tribal Historic Preservation Officer(s), interested federally recognized Indian tribes or Native Hawaiian organizations, representatives of local governments, historic preservation organizations, others with an interest in the preservation outcomes of the project, and/or those with a legal, economic or other demonstrated interest in the project. The FAA identified an Area of Potential Effects (APE) for potential direct effects (i.e., where physical construction of the Port Authority’s proposed alternative would occur) and for potential indirect effects (e.g., visual effects). The FAA submitted the APE to the SHPO for review and concurrence in June 2019, along with a list of potential consulting parties. The SHPO concurred with the FAA’s submittal on July 15, 2019.
An initial consulting parties meeting was held on September 18, 2019 to introduce the proposed project, the Section 106 process, discuss the APE, and present initial results of the archaeological and historic architectural surveys completed to date. Click HERE to view the presentation from the September 18, 2019 consulting parties meeting. Consistent with National Register guidance, all resources over or near 50 years of age located within the APE were evaluated against National Register of Historic Places (National Register) criteria*. The initial survey results indicate that the Flushing Meadows-Corona Park Historic District and 6 contributing resources associated with the Flushing Meadows-Corona Park Historic District are eligible for listing in the National Register. No other surveyed properties initially appear to meet the eligibility requirements for listing in the National Register (see process flow chart below). Although these properties may not meet the eligibility requirements for listing in the National Register, FAA understands that they are important for personal, local, community, and other reasons. The Section 106 Process is one aspect of the overall Environmental Impact Statement process, which will disclose other potential impacts to the community beyond the identified eligible historic resources.
*These criteria are specified in the National Register of Historic Places Bulletin 15, “How to Apply the National Register Criteria for Evaluation,” published by the U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service
SECTION 106 PROCESS - NATIONAL REGISTER OF HISTORIC PLACES CRITERIA
While the initial results of the surveys were presented at the September 18 consulting parties meeting, the survey reports have not been submitted for review by the SHPO and FAA has not made a formal determination of eligibility of historic properties for the National Register. FAA is seeking information from the consulting parties on properties they believe may meet eligibility requirements for listing in the National Register. Additionally, if other organizations with knowledge of historic resources in the area want to become a consulting party to the Section 106 review process, they should make a request in writing (mail or email) to:
Environmental Program Manager
FAA, Eastern Region Office
159-30 Rockaway Blvd
Jamaica, NY 11434
The next consulting party meeting will be held in November 2019 to discuss any identified properties and FAA’s determinations of eligibility for listing in the National Register. FAA will also preliminary discuss potential effects from the proposed project on those historic properties that are listed in or eligible for listing in the National Register. If you have any questions about the specifics of the Port Authority’s proposed project, please see the scoping meeting presentation boards depicting the proposed project elements. The scoping meeting presentation boards are located on the following page: www.lgaaccesseis.com/project-documents, or can be directly viewed here.