Here are the latest updates on 4 Central Texas toll projects

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Updates on the MoPac, SH 45 SW, US 183 South and Hwy. 290 toll projects were the highlight of Wednesday’s board meeting for the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority.

Here is the latest update on those four projects:

MoPac express lanes
Most construction activities are occurring overnight as crews continue paving work. On July 12, a peak number of 457 workers were on-site, with most workers working from about 9 p.m. to 5 a.m.

Most of the final pavement and striping is complete between US 183 and RM 2222. Through mid-August, workers will be adding a level-up pavement on northbound MoPac south of RM 2222 to prepare the road for the final layer of pavement.

The agency is planning to open the rest of the northbound express lane in late September with the southbound side opening in the weeks after, said Steve Pustelnyk, the agency’s director of community affairs.

Here’s a peek at the new southbound express lane underpass to downtown Austin:

SH 45 SW
The Mobility Authority is in talks with the Hill Country Conservancy to take part of the shared-use path in the SH 45 SW project into the Violet Crown Trail system.

Mobility Authority board Member Charles Heimsath asked how the trail material will look, considering the agency uses concrete for its shared-use paths and the conservancy uses a type of crushed granite.

Dee Anne Heath, the Mobility Authority’s director of external affairs and media relations, said the two organizations are still discussing those details.

The SH 45 SW toll project is on schedule to open in summer 2019 and will provide a connection from MoPac South to FM 1626.

290 Toll direct connectors

The Mobility Authority, in coordination with TxDOT, will add three new direct connectors or flyovers at the Hwy. 290 Toll and SH 130 interchange. (via Courtesy Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority)

Phase 3 of Manor Expressway-Hwy. 290 Toll
The agency will begin construction next spring on three direct connectors or flyovers between Hwy. 290 Toll—also known as the Manor Expressway—and SH 130. Design work is about 60 percent complete.

The Texas Department of Transportation is providing $41.1 million in funding for the flyover from eastbound Hwy. 290 to southbound SH 130 and will bring that tolled connection into the TxDOT system.

The other two flyovers, from northbound SH 130 to westbound Hwy. 290 and from southbound SH 130 to westbound Hwy. 290, will be added to the Mobility Authority’s toll system.

US 183 South
The agency is moving forward on about $5.7 million worth of change orders to the four-year, $743 million project to add three tolled lanes in each direction from Hwy. 290 to Hwy. 71.

One of those change orders is to add a U-turn at Patton Avenue for drivers heading southbound on the frontage road and who want to go northbound. The addition is needed because TxDOT plans to extend the southbound frontage road from Patton to Airport Boulevard. The Mobility Authority will also leave room for a northbound to southbound U-turn.

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COMMENT
  1. The Texas legislator is creating two classes of people with these toll roads instead of raising the gas tax. They needed to raise the gas tax and be done with it. We have 25 people a day moving to Austin alone not to mention the other cities in Texas .

Amy Denney
Amy has been reporting in community journalism since 2007. She worked in the Chicago suburbs for three years before migrating south and joined Community Impact Newspaper in September 2010. Amy has been editor of the Northwest Austin publication since August 2012 and she is also the transportation beat reporter for the Austin area.
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