14 transportation updates to know in August in Round Rock, Pflugerville, Hutto


Round Rock & Hutto

Ongoing projects

1. Railroad quiet zones
Construction includes both city of Round Rock and Union Pacific railroad work at street and railroad crossing intersections. The crossings are being brought up to compliance with federal standards regarding quiet zone requirements. The crossings are electronically controlled by the train, which triggers traffic signals and clears the tracks of motorists. Union Pacific has installed signals at A. Burnet Street and B. St. Williams Street, though both are currently inactive.

Timeline: city’s portion of construction will be completed in the fall with Union Pacific continuing work after that

Recent updates

2. I-35 from RM 1431 to FM 3406, northbound
The project is designed to improve safety and mobility on I-35’s northbound frontage road as well as its exit ramp between RM 1431 and FM 3406. It will widen the northbound frontage road and also includes bicycle and pedestrian improvements.

Status: construction began in late July
Timeline: July-late 2020
Cost: $10.4 million
Funding sources: Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, Texas Department of Transportation

3. McNeil Road extension, Phase 2
The project acts as a bypass for downtown Round Rock, allowing traffic to flow more smoothly. Phase 1 of the project, which extended McNeil Road to Lampasas Street, is complete. Phase 2 of the project will extend the roadway from Burnet Street to Georgetown Street.

Status: Construction is expected to begin in mid-August
Timeline: August-May/June 2020
Cost: $3 million
Funding source: budgeted/Type B

4. I-35 improvements from SH 45 to Hwy. 79, northbound
The project includes new braided ramps, where one ramp crosses the other, along the northbound I-35 main lanes constructed between Hesters Crossing and RM 620. A third left-turn lane has been constructed for westbound Hwy. 79.

Status: crews are nearly done with the final paving and striping of northbound I-35 lanes between Hesters Crossing and RM 620
Timeline: July 2016-late summer 2019
Funding source: TxDOT

5. Hwy. 79 median at Co-Op Boulevard
Several improvement projects are in the works for areas surrounding the Co-Op District, a mixed-use development in Hutto. A raised median on Hwy. 79 is under construction, and traffic signal is in the works for the entrance to the Co-Op District at Hwy. 79 and Co-Op Boulevard.

Status: construction began June 4
Timeline: June-August
Cost: $647,000
Funding source: MA Partners, developers of the Co-Op District

Upcoming projects

6. I-35 improvements from Hwy. 79 to SH 45, southbound
The project includes constructing an auxiliary lane to remove merging conflicts on the I-35 southbound main lanes between RM 620 and Hesters Crossing. The proposed southbound auxiliary lane extending from the US 79 entrance ramp to the SH 45 N exit ramp will eliminate a forced merge. The existing southbound auxiliary lane from the RM 620 entrance ramp to the Hesters Crossing exit ramp will remain.

Status: completed plans, specifications and estimates anticipated for early 2020
Timeline: construction expected to begin in late 2020
Cost: $5 million
Funding source: TxDOT

7. RM 620 improvements
The city of Round Rock, Williamson County and TxDOT are partnering on the RM 620 project, which will feature improvements from Deep Wood Drive to I-35. The project will add frontage road lanes as well as construct a bridge over the railroad crossing at Chisholm Trail Road and add a roundabout underneath the bridge. To help maintain access to businesses and residential spaces in the area, access roads will be built between Lake Creek Drive and Chisholm Trail. A second bridge will be constructed to carry RM 620 traffic over Lake Creek Drive.

Status: project goes out to bid in August
Timeline: project is anticipated to begin construction in the fall
Cost: $40 million
Funding sources: TxDOT, Williamson County, city of Round Rock

8. FM 1660 intersection improvements
Three FM 1660 intersections— A. North FM 1660 at Limmer Loop, B. North FM 1660 at Hwy. 79 and C. South FM 1660 at Front Street—were incorporated as part of the city of Hutto’s 2018 transportation bonds. The intersection updates were designed to help improve traffic backups within city limits.

Status: the city has begun preliminary engineering work with the project’s engineer, which includes surveying, traffic counts, utility exploration, environmental assessments and other studies; the project’s engineer has developed preliminary layouts for the three intersection improvements following the traffic study
Timeline: TBD
Cost: $6 million
Funding source: city of Hutto 2018 transportation bond

9. Hwy. 79 crossing
The city of Hutto is in the process of creating a way over or under Hwy. 79 as a means to connect the northern and southern sections of the city. Preliminary plans show the connector located between CR 132 and CR 134 near Hwy. 79. The overpass/underpass would connect to CR 132 north of Hwy. 79.

Status: currently in design phase
Timeline: TBD
Cost: $32 million
Funding source: city of Hutto 2018 transportation bond

transportation updates



Ongoing projects

1. Weiss Lane improvements
The project is designed to widen Weiss Lane from Wilbarger Creek to Cele Road from two lanes to four along with curb, gutter and drainage improvements. The southernmost section running from Wilbarger to East Pecan Street will also be reconstructed as a two-lane highway with shoulders included. The project also includes reconstruction of all bridge structures.

Timeline: March 2017-late summer 2019

Recent updates

2. Pfennig Lane widening and reconstruction
The project will reconstruct and widen Pfennig Lane to a three-lane roadway, with a two-way, left-turn center lane, curbs and gutters running from Rocky Creek Drive to Justice Center Drive. Pfennig is reduced to one lane of westbound traffic for the duration of the first phase of the project, with eastbound traffic detouring through East Pflugerville Parkway and FM 685.

Status: Phase 1 of the project is 80% complete
Timeline: March-December
Cost: $1.62 million
Funding source: 2014 city of Pflugerville transportation bond

3. Old Austin-Hutto Road improvements
The project will widen Old Austin-Hutto Road into a three-lane highway and includes pavement improvements. The updated configuration will include one lane in each direction in addition to a two-way left-turn center lane.

Status: the final design is in progress
Timeline: complete final design this summer, project out for bid this fall
Cost: $3.7 million
Funding sources: 2014 city of Pflugerville transportation bonds for design, 2018 city of Pflugerville bonds for construction

4. SH 130 widening
Crews are working to widen the existing main lanes and bridges of SH 130 to add a third lane in both the northbound and southbound directions between SH 45 N and Hwy. 290 East.

Status: crews are working on the Parmer Lane, Howard Lane and Gilleland Creek bridges; bridge pours on the northbound side are complete as of late July, and the southbound side is in progress
Timeline: October 2018-late 2020
Cost: $36.7 million
Funding source: Central Texas Turnpike System

Upcoming projects

5. Kelly Lane improvements
To reduce traffic congestion in the area, the project will widen Kelly Lane from a two-lane roadway to a four-lane road running from West Falcon Pointe Boulevard to Moonlynch Avenue. Project improvements include curb and gutter, sidewalk, storm sewer, streetlights and operational traffic signals.

Status: design is anticipated to begin in the fall with construction TBD
Cost: $7.81 million
Funding source: 2018 city of Pflugerville transportation bond

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  1. What’s the plan for the construction on 1660 S near CR 135 and CR 138? None of the updates ever mention that area even though construction is in progress…

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Kelsey Thompson is the reporter for Round Rock, Pflugerville and Hutto, where her work focuses on education, city government and community development. Originally from upstate New York, Kelsey relocated to Austin after graduating from Syracuse University in May 2019.
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