First phase of US 183 South toll project in East Austin opens July 31

The northern portion of the US 183 South toll road opens July 31-Aug. 1, 2019.

The northern portion of the US 183 South toll road opens July 31-Aug. 1, 2019.

A major toll project that runs through East Austin has hit its interim construction milestone on time, and the first phase of the new toll road will open July 31.

By 5 a.m. July 31, the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority will open the new toll lanes on northbound US 183 between Toll 290 and Techni Center Drive. By 5 a.m. Aug. 1, the southbound US 183 toll lanes will open in that section.

“There could be some congestion at first as people adjust to the new lane configurations,” said Steve Pustelnyk, director of community relations for the Mobility Authority.

The entire project will open in late 2020, allowing drivers to use three toll lanes in each direction on US 183 between Toll 290 and SH 71. The $743 million project began in May 2016 and includes $25 million worth of pedestrian and bicycle improvements, including converting the Montopolis steel truss bridge into a bicycle and pedestrian facility.

Drivers with a toll tag who use the new toll lanes will not pay tolls through Aug. 31. After that, the facility will accept toll tags, including TxTag, TollTag, EZ-Tag, K-TAG, Pikepass and BancPass. Drivers may also pay by mail but will be charged an additional $1 processing fee. The toll on the northern portion will be $1.21 for tag users and $1.82 for pay by mail. The toll for the ramps at Loyola Lane will be $0.65 for tag users and $0.98 for pay by mail.

The biggest change for northbound US 183 drivers is the traffic signal at Techni Center will be removed, and the signal at Loyola will be turned on, Pustelnyk said.

“With the removal of the Techni Center light, there will only be two lights on northbound 183, and there used to be five lights,” he said. “We would expect northbound traffic to flow really well.”

Even with fewer traffic signals, he said access to neighborhoods and businesses on US 183 will be easier. Drivers can use unsignalized U-turns at Loyola near Bolm Road, Montopolis Drive, MLK Jr. Boulevard and Patton Avenue.

“It will be easier to travel the corridor, especially during rush hour,” Pustelnyk said. “It’s the next step toward faster and smoother travel. Techni Center has been impediment to traffic flow.”

On the southbound side, Pustelnyk said the changes will not seem as drastic, and drivers may still experience some congestion near FM 969 when the toll lanes end and drivers transition to two lanes.

Here are a few other things to know about the current status of the US 183 South project:

  • By 5 a.m. Aug. 2, the Loyola Lane crossing over US 183 will reopen after a year-and-a-half-long closure to reconstruct the bridge.

  • The shared-use path between MLK Jr. Boulevard and Toll 290 will open with the northern section. However, the pedestrian bridges at Manor Road and 51st Street will open in mid-August by the time school starts.

  • Although the project may be open on the northern end, crews are still tying up project elements so drivers can expect to see lane closures happening overnight.

  • On southbound US 183, the bypass road to avoid the traffic signal at FM 969 without using the toll lanes will be reduced from two lanes to one. This will allow for a smoother transition to the southern portion of the roadway, which is still under construction.

  • Rehabilitation of the Montopolis steel truss bridge will begin in August or September. The Mobility Authority plans to keep the bridge open during the rehabilitation. The 80-year-old historic bridge closed in October to traffic.


For more information, visit www.183south.com.


MOST RECENT

A sign directs voters inside Ridgetop Elementary School in North Central Austin. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
11.8% of voters in Travis County have voted early since June 29, exceeding 2018 primary numbers

More than 97,000 Travis County residents have voted in person or by mail. The turnout far surpassed the combined early and Election Day totals in the 2018 primary run-off election.

A photo of the potential Tesla property
Travis County updates Tesla incentive package, pushing for $1 billion-plus investment from the company

Poised for a possible July 13 vote, Travis County has released a refined incentives structure proposal with electric carmaker Tesla.

Texas Commissioner of Education Mike Morath announced in a June 30 State Board of Education meeting that students will be taking the STAAR in the 2020-21 school year. (Courtesy Pixabay)
Education organizations call for STAAR requirements to be waived another year

Gov. Greg Abbott waived the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness, or STAAR, testing requirements in March of earlier this year in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

With a clinical background in internal, pulmonary and critical care medicine, Corry has been with BCM for 20 years. He now focuses primarily on inflammatory lung diseases, such as asthma and smoking-related chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases. (Graphic by Ronald Winters/Community Impact Newspaper)
Q&A: Baylor College of Medicine's Dr. David Corry discusses immunity, vaccine production amid COVID-19 pandemic

Rapid development and distribution of a vaccine worldwide and successful achievement of herd immunity will be key players in determining the lifespan of the COVID-19 pandemic, said Dr. David Corry, a professor of Medicine in the Immunology, Allergy and Rheumatology Section at Baylor College of Medicine.

The building would be used as a 15,000-square-foot real estate office near Stearns Lane. (Site plan courtesy Townbridge Homes)
New office building could be headed to W. Hwy. 290 in South Austin

The building would be used as a 15,000 square-foot real estate office near Stearns Lane.

Gourdough's filed for bankruptcy June 23. The South Lamar brick-and-mortar location and its food truck both remain open. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
South Lamar donut spot Gourdough's files for bankruptcy

Court documents show that the owners of Gourdough's poured $1.79 million into a San Antonio location that opened in 2019.

The new partnership will provide on-site, same-day testing and results for assisted-living facility staff and their residents. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
State announces partnership for increased COVID-19 testing for patients, staff at assisted-living facilities, nursing homes

These test sites will help the state work toward the goal of processing up to 100,000 tests in the first month.

The city of Austin has sent three samples of algae from Lady Bird Lake to The University of Texas to test them for toxins. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
University of Texas researchers will test Lady Bird Lake algae for harmful toxins

Last summer, five dogs died in Lady Bird Lake after coming into contact with the toxic blue-green algae.

Former Cedar Park Police Department Chief Sean Mannix is pictured in this 2015 file photo. (Community Impact Newspaper file photo)
Cedar Park police chief moves to Burnet, driver's license offices reopen: Most popular news this week from Central Texas

Read the most popular Central Texas news from the past week on Community Impact Newspaper's website.

A photo of Del Valle ISD's Cardinal stadium
Del Valle ISD approves Tesla incentives, paving way for possible Travis County agreement

The school district's July 9 vote could yield Tesla around $46.4 million in tax abatements if the company chooses Travis County as its next factory site.

Travis County has had 13,864 total confirmed coronavirus cases since the beginning of the pandemic as of July 9. (Community Impact staff)
Travis County tops 700 new COVID-19 cases for second straight day July 9

Travis County has had 13,864 total confirmed coronavirus cases since the beginning of the pandemic.

Effective July 9, hospitals in more than 100 counties across the state must now postpone elective surgeries unrelated to COVID-19. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
MAP: Governor expands restrictions on elective surgeries to more than 100 Texas counties

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott expanded the restrictions that initially required only hospitals in Bexar, Dallas, Harris, and Travis counties to postpone all non-medically necessary surgeries and procedures that are unrelated to COVID-19.