Transportation

Traffic, public transit, congestion, road construction and closures, I-35, MoPac, US 290, US 183, Ben White Blvd, and policy and planning issues related to transportation and mobility in Austin and the Central Texas counties of Travis, Hays, Caldwell, Bastrop and Williamson.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Capital Metro is moving ahead with plans to build a signature station at the MetroRail stop near the Austin Convention Center. The $22 million project will include upgrades to shade passengers waiting at the Fourth Street commuter train stop. 

That got us wondering about the 2,649 CapMetro bus stops that may not be getting this kind of attention. Anyone who has ever waited for the bus in the summer knows it can be a torturous experience. 

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

There is plenty of parking in downtown Austin, but often those spaces aren’t available, according to a parking study released Wednesday by the nonprofit Downtown Austin Alliance. 

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

Austin is in the process of adopting several plans that will guide the future of development and transportation in the region. The city revealed a new guide Tuesday for the future of street design.

KUT

U.S. Department of Justice officials talked to city staff last week about including Austin in a criminal investigation of Uber.   

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

For years the electric car company Tesla has tried to change the way people are allowed to buy cars in Texas. The company wants make it legal for consumers to cut out the middleman and buy cars directly from the manufacturer, a way of car shopping that’s already been adopted in many other states. 

Monday, the Austin Department of Transportation released the winners for its contest to write the best caption for dynamic message signs – those blinking road signs along Austin's roads that warn of impending (or ongoing) construction, lane merges and general roadway shenanigans. 

In the end, only 15 were given the satisfaction of having their work seen by throngs of gridlock-bound Austinites, but there were plenty more submissions – 341, to be exact. Most of them were objectively not great, but there were some real gems in there, as well.

Stephanie Tacy for KUT

Residents of the Rainey Street neighborhood struck a deal last year with a developer looking to build new condos in the area. It agreed to conduct a comprehensive traffic study, determining what the most pressing transportation needs are and how they could be affected by new development.

Pavel Mezihorak for KUT

The Capital Metro board of directors on Monday unanimously approved a plan to overhaul its transit service. Cap Metro says Connections 2025 is designed to improve rider experience by creating a 24/7 transit system and expanding service.  

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

If you’ve ever tried to park in downtown Austin, you’ve probably found yourself circling the streets a few times before finding a spot. The city is exploring changes to make more parking available during peak traffic time – but that could mean cutting back on free parking hours.

Photo Illustration by Andrew Weber, Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Austin’s got a checkered past when it comes to digital road signs. The blinking roadway signs have been hacked a few times in the past to warn of zombies, to taunt the OU Sooners and to even pay tribute to the meme-launching death of Harambe. But the City of Austin Transportation Department has decided to harness that creative energy for good, by allowing anyone to submit safe-for-work language for road signs starting today.

Texas Transportation Institute

Researchers from the Texas Transportation Institute at Texas A&M University and the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute want to know more about Austinites' experiences with ride-hailing companies before and after Uber and Lyft left town.

Jorge Sanhueza Lyon / KUT

Over the summer, the Austin City Council took a hard stance on criminal background checks for taxi drivers, eventually expanding them from a statewide check to a national one. But last week, council members reversed course on that decision.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

Testimony included talk of a birthday.

“Ben turned 10 on Monday at a rehabilitation facility in Dallas,” Kathy Sokolic told members of the City Council Mobility Committee on Wednesday. As we’ve chronicled before, a car hit Sokolic’s nephew, Ben, outside his home in the Mueller neighborhood in September. He survived, but his injuries have left him unable to speak or walk.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Holding back tears, Kathy Sokolic told roughly 30 people seated outside City Hall the story of a bruised heart.

“On the evening of Sept. 12, our 9-year-old,” began Sokolic, before pausing to gather herself. “Our 9-year-old nephew, Ben, was hit by a truck on the residential street just feet from his home.”

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Uber does not have hard feelings about Prop 1.

In a forum hosted by the Austin Monitor, Glasshouse Policy and KUT on the patio of the Ginger Man bar downtown, a representative of the ride-hailing giant expressed regret about the tenor of the multimillion-dollar campaign waged by the company earlier this year. 

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

A new app’s looking to improve rides for Austin cyclists by using crowdsourced input on roads. Ride Report tracks a user’s bike route and surveys them on road and safety conditions after their ride’s concluded.

The app allows Austinites to plan trips throughout the city, providing suggestions on the best possible routes and conditions based on aggregate user data. After each ride, you can rate your commute “great” or “not great,” and those ratings feed the app’s so-called “stress map,” which color codes the best and worst roads and trails in the city according to the data. 

Downtown Austin Alliance

Streamlined technology and more expensive parking spaces – those are some of the recommendations of a new report that looks at improving parking in downtown Austin.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

From the Austin Monitor: Opting to go big, Austin voters on Tuesday night overwhelmingly approved Proposition 1, Mayor Steve Adler’s $720 million transportation bond package.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

One hundred and two people died on Austin’s roads last year – the most in the city’s recorded history. Now, Austin voters are now being asked to okay a $720 million bond to fund road improvements – bike lanes, sidewalks and urban trails. 


Daniel Reese for KUT News

After years of planning and consideration, a proposal to build a commuter rail line from Georgetown to San Antonio is now dead. The Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO) voted last night to remove the Lone Star Rail District from its long-range plan. 


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