Improvements to Airport Boulevard corridor approved

Instead of putting $24 million into improvements on the Airport Boulevard corridor, City Council decided Dec. 11 to instead invest only $2 million.



The funding comes from money raised through a Capital Metro quarter-cent tax that increased from 0.75 percent to 1 percent in 2000. Since then, hundreds of millions of dollars have been saved to help fund projects such as the proposed rail project that failed to gain voter support during November's election.



Because the rail proposition failed, those funds will now be invested based on recommendations from a previous corridor study instead of accomplishing the necessary improvements for a rail system in the area.



Some council members felt the money could be put to better use and used throughout the city because that area will not be receiving rail—hence the reduction from $24 million to $2 million in corridor improvements.



Anticipated changes include lane improvements, turn lanes, and safer pedestrian and cycling access, said Robert Spillar, city of Austin director of transportation. The city did not make it clear when construction along the corridor is scheduled to begin.



Vote: 6 "yes" votes, 1 "no" vote with Councilwoman Laura Morrison voting against



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