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Author Topic: Austin, TX  (Read 32353 times)

AcE_Wolf_287

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Austin, TX
« on: March 29, 2020, 02:38:39 PM »

Austin Texas has the Population of 964,000 (As of 2018) and its only Served by 1 Interstate? i know in the 1950's and 60's Austin only Had 100,000-250,000 People but still should've been served by another Interstate. Also why did TXDOT build so many Loops in Austin...
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silverback1065

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2020, 06:55:49 PM »

if you look at Austin, the only other interstate that makes any sense would have been an east west interstate, i.e. 10, which went to san antonio instead.  It's interesting that they dont have a real loop though, although that's slowly changing.  Austin's layout is a bit weird to me, it doesn't really have a lot of suburbs either.  The completely useless i-14 should have gone through Austin to make it somewhat useful.
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AcE_Wolf_287

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2020, 07:14:22 PM »

if you look at Austin, the only other interstate that makes any sense would have been an east west interstate, i.e. 10, which went to san antonio instead.  It's interesting that they dont have a real loop though, although that's slowly changing.  Austin's layout is a bit weird to me, it doesn't really have a lot of suburbs either.  The completely useless i-14 should have gone through Austin to make it somewhat useful.

yea I'm not a fan of I-14 either, and they ran I-35 straight through the city and they should've bypassed I-35 to the east
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Ryctor2018

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2020, 07:57:18 PM »

Austin, like many cities in the West/Southwest developed later in the 20th Century. That plus politics and NIMBYism contribute to the city not having freeways like other places of similar population.
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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2020, 08:18:31 PM »

A second North South Interstate would end up being U.S. 281. It is west of Austin, so there is your bypass. Project Tracker has numerous upgrade projects for U.S. 281 so it will be here eventually. ... Some of the projects are supposed to happen this year.
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AcE_Wolf_287

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2020, 08:21:37 PM »

A second North South Interstate would end up being U.S. 281. It is west of Austin, so there is your bypass. Project Tracker has numerous upgrade projects for U.S. 281 so it will be here eventually. ... Some of the projects are supposed to happen this year.

1. Probably I-37 Extension,
2. not from that far, i mean like a 15-25 mile Bypass 3di Route
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sprjus4

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2020, 10:52:19 PM »

There's already a north-south bypass for I-35... SH-130. For those who are willing to use it, it's very effective at avoiding the mess that I-35 through Austin is. More than once, I've been able to travel from Georgetown to San Antonio and vice versa during peak hours without hitting any congestion. It costs almost $20 for toll-by-plate from I-10 to I-35 North, but well worth it for a long-distance trip. It's about 90 miles long, and has a speed limit of at least 80 mph, 85 mph south of SH-45.

SH-45 is a loop around the east side that utilizes a segment of SH-130.

US-183 between SH-71 and US-290 is currently being upgraded into a toll freeway with frontage roads, again built to interstate standards. That will form an "inner" loop utilizing I-35 near Downtown, SH-71, and US-290.
It's not interstate highway, but is toll freeway built to interstate standards.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2020, 10:57:25 PM by sprjus4 »
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AcE_Wolf_287

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #7 on: March 29, 2020, 11:39:24 PM »

There's already a north-south bypass for I-35... SH-130. For those who are willing to use it, it's very effective at avoiding the mess that I-35 through Austin is. More than once, I've been able to travel from Georgetown to San Antonio and vice versa during peak hours without hitting any congestion. It costs almost $20 for toll-by-plate from I-10 to I-35 North, but well worth it for a long-distance trip. It's about 90 miles long, and has a speed limit of at least 80 mph, 85 mph south of SH-45.

SH-45 is a loop around the east side that utilizes a segment of SH-130.

US-183 between SH-71 and US-290 is currently being upgraded into a toll freeway with frontage roads, again built to interstate standards. That will form an "inner" loop utilizing I-35 near Downtown, SH-71, and US-290.
It's not interstate highway, but is toll freeway built to interstate standards.

I don’t think making US 290 a toll wouldn’t be worth it but it gives them the funds to make I-69, I-369, and I-14
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sprjus4

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2020, 12:08:57 AM »

There's already a north-south bypass for I-35... SH-130. For those who are willing to use it, it's very effective at avoiding the mess that I-35 through Austin is. More than once, I've been able to travel from Georgetown to San Antonio and vice versa during peak hours without hitting any congestion. It costs almost $20 for toll-by-plate from I-10 to I-35 North, but well worth it for a long-distance trip. It's about 90 miles long, and has a speed limit of at least 80 mph, 85 mph south of SH-45.

SH-45 is a loop around the east side that utilizes a segment of SH-130.

US-183 between SH-71 and US-290 is currently being upgraded into a toll freeway with frontage roads, again built to interstate standards. That will form an "inner" loop utilizing I-35 near Downtown, SH-71, and US-290.
It's not interstate highway, but is toll freeway built to interstate standards.

I don’t think making US 290 a toll wouldn’t be worth it but it gives them the funds to make I-69, I-369, and I-14
The freeway portion of US-290 west of US-183 is a toll road. The tolls are to fund the construction of that highway, not other roads.
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Scott5114

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2020, 04:11:37 AM »

A second North South Interstate would end up being U.S. 281. It is west of Austin, so there is your bypass.

SH-130...
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longhorn

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #10 on: March 30, 2020, 10:49:24 AM »

I don't believe many here truly understand the anti freeway bias that exists in Austin. Especially west of MoPac.
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Echostatic

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #11 on: March 30, 2020, 12:49:13 PM »

I don't believe many here truly understand the anti freeway bias that exists in Austin. Especially west of MoPac.

It's a miracle we have half the freeways we do. MoPac would never have been built today, or any freeway segments of 290, or Loop 360. The US 290 freeway extension to Circle Dr, Oak Hill Parkway, took over two decades to get through local opposition. Same thing with 45SW, the highway in my flair. I-35 funding got passed, but the local response has been strongly against widening I-35 (somehow.) Hell, even the SH130 widening was an intense debate, and it's miles outside of town.

It would at least make sense if we had a decent transit system, but we've been voting down major transit packages since 2000. People complain about traffic nonstop, then advocate against widening freeways, then vote against public transit. It's ridiculous.

texaskdog

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #12 on: March 30, 2020, 01:08:07 PM »

I don't believe many here truly understand the anti freeway bias that exists in Austin. Especially west of MoPac.

It's a very very blue city the "don't build it they won't come" mentality that exists.  My 90 minute drive home (14 miles)
now takes 18 it is truly amazing.
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texaskdog

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #13 on: March 30, 2020, 01:09:02 PM »

I don't believe many here truly understand the anti freeway bias that exists in Austin. Especially west of MoPac.

It's a miracle we have half the freeways we do. MoPac would never have been built today, or any freeway segments of 290, or Loop 360. The US 290 freeway extension to Circle Dr, Oak Hill Parkway, took over two decades to get through local opposition. Same thing with 45SW, the highway in my flair. I-35 funding got passed, but the local response has been strongly against widening I-35 (somehow.) Hell, even the SH130 widening was an intense debate, and it's miles outside of town.

It would at least make sense if we had a decent transit system, but we've been voting down major transit packages since 2000. People complain about traffic nonstop, then advocate against widening freeways, then vote against public transit. It's ridiculous.

Mayor Adler has this idea that his plans will work.  Maybe something like an el train.  High speed buses are not the answer. 
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bwana39

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #14 on: March 30, 2020, 01:13:50 PM »

I don't believe many here truly understand the anti freeway bias that exists in Austin. Especially west of MoPac.

Austin is / was a college town and a state Capitol when state capitols were seats of small government.  As long as the Universities were the center of Austin, it was a liberal, intimate collegial environment.  State government was small. The real government (the legislature) met for 6 weeks every other year. Back when, they might have an ocasional special session, but the bulk of the time, none of the legislators were there. Boards and commissions back when, the comissioners met in convenient places (often the chaiman's location) and held public but little publicised meetings.  Let's just say, state government was smaller and not concentrated in Austin. 
Plus before the 1980's Austin was an intellectual not a productive place. Dell and Whole Foods (which is mostly owned by Amazon) are the only fortune 500 companies headquartered there; even now.  It is that education that has led to Austin's growth.

Intelectuals EVERYWHERE hold a freeway bias. They seem to not want to build any more and even tear down what is there.
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texaskdog

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2020, 01:18:16 PM »

I don't believe many here truly understand the anti freeway bias that exists in Austin. Especially west of MoPac.

Austin is / was a college town and a state Capitol when state capitols were seats of small government.  As long as the Universities were the center of Austin, it was a liberal, intimate collegial environment.  State government was small. The real government (the legislature) met for 6 weeks every other year. Back when, they might have an ocasional special session, but the bulk of the time, none of the legislators were there. Boards and commissions back when, the comissioners met in convenient places (often the chaiman's location) and held public but little publicised meetings.  Let's just say, state government was smaller and not concentrated in Austin. 
Plus before the 1980's Austin was an intellectual not a productive place. Dell and Whole Foods (which is mostly owned by Amazon) are the only fortune 500 companies headquartered there; even now.  It is that education that has led to Austin's growth.

Intelectuals EVERYWHERE hold a freeway bias. They seem to not want to build any more and even tear down what is there.

They wanted to remove the upper deck of I-35.  Where you gonna put that traffic?  plus even if you have a plan you're talking 3 years of orange cones to get there
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bwana39

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #16 on: March 30, 2020, 01:19:00 PM »

About the only route for another Austin Interstate would have been to route I-20 along US 79 from Shreveport. US-80 was already established as a MAJOR east / west thoroughfare. 

As far as that goes the three predominate historic auto routes east to west through Texas were the Dixie Overland Highway (US80 now I-20) and the Bankhead Hwy (US 67 from Texarkana to Dallas Now I-30)then MOSTLY concurrent with DOH to ElPaso,  and the OLD Spanish Trail (US 90, now I-10) .  The interstates followed them.

« Last Edit: March 30, 2020, 01:25:08 PM by bwana39 »
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longhorn

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #17 on: March 30, 2020, 03:51:04 PM »

I don't believe many here truly understand the anti freeway bias that exists in Austin. Especially west of MoPac.

It's a miracle we have half the freeways we do. MoPac would never have been built today, or any freeway segments of 290, or Loop 360. The US 290 freeway extension to Circle Dr, Oak Hill Parkway, took over two decades to get through local opposition. Same thing with 45SW, the highway in my flair. I-35 funding got passed, but the local response has been strongly against widening I-35 (somehow.) Hell, even the SH130 widening was an intense debate, and it's miles outside of town.

It would at least make sense if we had a decent transit system, but we've been voting down major transit packages since 2000. People complain about traffic nonstop, then advocate against widening freeways, then vote against public transit. It's ridiculous.

Well, there is this incompetent agency called Cap Metro that populace do not trust one bit to run mass transit.
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longhorn

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #18 on: March 30, 2020, 03:53:30 PM »

I don't believe many here truly understand the anti freeway bias that exists in Austin. Especially west of MoPac.

Austin is / was a college town and a state Capitol when state capitols were seats of small government.  As long as the Universities were the center of Austin, it was a liberal, intimate collegial environment.  State government was small. The real government (the legislature) met for 6 weeks every other year. Back when, they might have an ocasional special session, but the bulk of the time, none of the legislators were there. Boards and commissions back when, the comissioners met in convenient places (often the chaiman's location) and held public but little publicised meetings.  Let's just say, state government was smaller and not concentrated in Austin. 
Plus before the 1980's Austin was an intellectual not a productive place. Dell and Whole Foods (which is mostly owned by Amazon) are the only fortune 500 companies headquartered there; even now.  It is that education that has led to Austin's growth.

Intelectuals EVERYWHERE hold a freeway bias. They seem to not want to build any more and even tear down what is there.

Just reminiscing what Austin used to be, when it was a fun city and Mueller Airport was only 15 minutes from downtown.
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Bobby5280

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #19 on: March 30, 2020, 05:16:03 PM »

I strongly believe Austin needs 1 or 2 East-West freeways connecting to and thru the metro area.

US-290 needs to be improved to Interstate standards 100% of the way between Austin and Houston. That is do-able. It's also feasible to improve TX-71 to Interstate standards from the I-10 exit in Columbus, TX up to the Southern side of Austin. The Austin metro has over 2 million people. Houston's metro has over 6 million. Plus the zone between Austin and San Antonio is growing rapidly.

US-290 needs to be improved to Interstate standards going West out of Austin, to/near Johnson City, Fredericksburg and then I-10. That's the harder project to build, but it needs to be built somehow. There is one expansion project to convert US-290 into a freeway just past the "Y" split at Circle Drive. But it's going to be difficult pushing the expansion farther West through Bear Creek and Dripping Springs. Parts of the existing route can be expanded, but others may require a new terrain path.
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AcE_Wolf_287

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #20 on: March 30, 2020, 05:40:32 PM »

I strongly believe Austin needs 1 or 2 East-West freeways connecting to and thru the metro area.

US-290 needs to be improved to Interstate standards 100% of the way between Austin and Houston. That is do-able. It's also feasible to improve TX-71 to Interstate standards from the I-10 exit in Columbus, TX up to the Southern side of Austin. The Austin metro has over 2 million people. Houston's metro has over 6 million. Plus the zone between Austin and San Antonio is growing rapidly.

US-290 needs to be improved to Interstate standards going West out of Austin, to/near Johnson City, Fredericksburg and then I-10. That's the harder project to build, but it needs to be built somehow. There is one expansion project to convert US-290 into a freeway just past the "Y" split at Circle Drive. But it's going to be difficult pushing the expansion farther West through Bear Creek and Dripping Springs. Parts of the existing route can be expanded, but others may require a new terrain path.

US 290 connects with I-610 in Houston, so thats a 3di spur right there
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sprjus4

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #21 on: March 30, 2020, 06:04:14 PM »

US 290 connects with I-610 in Houston, so thats a 3di spur right there
In addition, there's also dedicated ramps that take traffic from US-290 directly to I-10 without merging with I-610.

A western I-12 or similar 2di would be appropriate for the US-290 corridor between I-10 in Houston to I-35 in Austin.
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AcE_Wolf_287

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #22 on: March 30, 2020, 06:08:08 PM »

US 290 connects with I-610 in Houston, so thats a 3di spur right there
In addition, there's also dedicated ramps that take traffic from US-290 directly to I-10 without merging with I-610.

A western I-12 or similar 2di would be appropriate for the US-290 corridor between I-10 in Houston to I-35 in Austin.

i did make a map of that one, but i didn't really like it,
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sprjus4

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #23 on: March 30, 2020, 06:19:22 PM »

i did make a map of that one, but i didn't really like it,
So there should be no connection between the two cities... because it didn't look good?
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AcE_Wolf_287

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Re: Austin, TX
« Reply #24 on: March 30, 2020, 06:52:20 PM »

i did make a map of that one, but i didn't really like it,
So there should be no connection between the two cities... because it didn't look good?

No, the Concurrency of I-10/I-12 From Baton Rouge to Houston, and if i routed it onto US 190 to Houston, it would be too Close to I-10, there would be no need for a freeway
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