Central Austin Transportation Updates—August 2015

Central Austin August 2015

1. West Third Street


West Third Street between Congress Avenue and Guadalupe Street was converted Aug. 15 into a two-lane roadway Aug. 15 to match the eastern portion of downtown Third Street. The corridor includes improved pedestrian and bicycle access. Construction work continues along the corridor.

Estimated timeline: Summer 2016

2. I-35 ramp improvements


I-35 ramp improvements are being completed from Barbara Jordan Boulevard to 53rd Street to add a northbound off-ramp from the I-35 frontage road to 51st Street and Cameron Road. Various bicycle and pedestrian improvements are also in the works.

Estimated timeline: September 2014-winter 2015

3. West Avenue


West Avenue between Third and Sixth streets will partially close from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. Aug. 29 and 30 as part of Shoal Creek Greenbelt Trail improvements. There will be one lane in each direction at Fifth and Sixth streets, and westbound traffic will be reduced to one lane at Third Street.

Estimated timeline: Aug. 15-30

4. West 35th Street utility upgrade and coinciding partial road closures


Austin Energy, Austin Water Utility and the city’s Public Works Department are working on a project to direct more reliable electrical service to the Davis Water Treatment Plant, 3500 W. 35th St.

CTA-2015-08-13-04-1

Such an upgrade requires city crews to install utility lines underneath 35th Street from Austin Energy’s Warren Substation near Hillview Road to Foothill Drive, according to Project Manager Dennis Crabill.

Work on the seven-phase project should begin in early 2016, according to Crabill, and should last no more than six months. As part of the project, the city in late September will also study the intersection at Pecos and West 35th streets for a potential traffic signal. The results of that study will be shared by year’s end, according to Crabill. Traffic will also be video-monitored in real time at the Exposition Boulevard intersection, he said.

An Aug. 5 public meeting about the project attracted 20 to 30 residents, according to a city spokesperson. An additional public meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m. Sept. 16 at Westwood Country Club, with Council Member Sheri Gallo anticipated to attend.
Crabill said the city will not consider repaving all of West 35th Street until after the utility upgrade project is complete.
By Joe Lanane
Joe Lanane’s career is rooted in community journalism, having worked for a variety of Midwest-area publications before landing south of the Mason-Dixon line in 2011 as the Stillwater News-Press news editor. He arrived at Community Impact Newspaper in 2012, gaining experience as editor of the company’s second-oldest publication in Leander/Cedar Park. He eventually became Central Austin editor, covering City Hall and the urban core of the city. Lanane leveraged that experience to become Austin managing editor in 2016. He managed eight Central Texas editions from Georgetown to San Marcos. Working from company headquarters, Lanane also became heavily involved in enacting corporate-wide editorial improvements. In 2017, Lanane was promoted to executive editor, overseeing editorial operations throughout the company. The Illinois native received his bachelor’s degree from Western Illinois University and his journalism master’s degree from Ball State University.


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