AARoads Forum

Regional Boards => Mid-South => Topic started by: MaxConcrete on April 25, 2019, 12:03:01 AM

Title: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: MaxConcrete on April 25, 2019, 12:03:01 AM
Meeting page https://www.txdot.gov/business/consultants/architectural-engineering-surveying/meetings/041819.html (https://www.txdot.gov/business/consultants/architectural-engineering-surveying/meetings/041819.html)
Presentation with cross section views  http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/ppd/041819/pre-rfp-presentation.pdf (http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/ppd/041819/pre-rfp-presentation.pdf)

The presentation emphasizes that the managed lanes are non-tolled, using the "non-tolled" prefix in virtually all references.

The project is divided into the 3 sections: north, central and south

The north section is modest, adding only two managed lanes in the interior shoulder area of the existing 3x3 freeway. On the plus side, cost is estimated at $400 million and projected contract award is March 2022.

The south section is slightly more ambitious, adding four managed lanes (2x2) in the interior of the existing 3x3 freeway. The cross section view suggests standards will be low (i.e. no shoulders and narrow lanes). Cost is $300 million with a projected contract award in January 2022.

The central section, in contrast, is hugely ambitious and will be hugely expensive and difficult to construct. No cost or timeline is mentioned.
* The current section with elevated lanes is proposed to be a three-level stacked freeway, with two levels below grade.
* The cross section looks like the lower 2x2 managed lanes will barely fit between the existing elevated lane piers. If it doesn't fit, the freeway will need to be entirely closed to build it. If it does fit, the freeway will need to be reduced to only the upper deck lanes while the bottom level is built.
* It looks like the middle deck will be open to the surface (like the LBJ Express lanes in Dallas), but the Express lanes appear to be tunnels
(http://dallasfreeways.com/dfwfreeways/AARoads/cross-section-1.jpg)

The downtown section replaces the existing 3x3 mostly elevated freeway with a 4-2M-2M-4 sunk into a trench. This should be able to be built while keeping the existing freeway lanes open. I'm thinking there will be provisions to overdeck the freeway with a park, although locals would have to pay for that.
(http://dallasfreeways.com/dfwfreeways/AARoads/downtown-cross-section.jpg)

The south section has 2x2 managed lanes in a tunnel underneath the main lanes. I'm assuming this will be a cut and cover tunnel, which may also be difficult to build and still keep 6 lanes open.
(http://dallasfreeways.com/dfwfreeways/AARoads/cross-section-south.jpg)

The solicitation also calls for a signature bridge over Lake Lady Bird, which will be costly due to the number of lanes, probably 20 including the frontage road lanes.

The cost and funding are big questions for this section. I suppose we'll see some numbers within a couple years. There have been many plans for IH 35 through Austin during the past 20 years, and none have moved forward. I'm thinking this proposal is definitely not a sure thing.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: thisdj78 on April 25, 2019, 09:27:04 AM
Interesting, looks very similar to an idea I posted on the now defunct speakup4mobility site regarding the elevated lanes. My idea was to connect and join the elevated lanes with a structure that would support additional lanes and convert the lower deck into managed lanes.

(http://i65.tinypic.com/154gl6g.png)

If they have to shut 35 down for an extended amount of time, they will need to temporarily remove tolls on SH130 and establish that as a construction bypass route.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Plutonic Panda on April 25, 2019, 03:07:34 PM
That would be exciting! Hopefully it happens.

Austin also needs to seriously invest in mass transit preferably rail based. A 10-20 billion dollar package over 10 years would be great.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: The Ghostbuster on April 25, 2019, 04:10:41 PM
Could the elevated lanes proposal in Austin connect with the elevated lanes proposal in San Antonio? Or would that be overkill?
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: thisdj78 on April 25, 2019, 05:47:47 PM
Could the elevated lanes proposal in Austin connect with the elevated lanes proposal in San Antonio? Or would that be overkill?

That would be nearly 70 miles of continuously elevated lanes. I couldnít foresee that happening.

On the other hand, I could definitely see ďexpress/HOVĒ lanes built along the entire length of 35 between the two cities.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: longhorn on April 26, 2019, 04:35:38 PM
Look at the I-35/290 interchange, see how wide 35 is there as an idea of how many lanes wide 35 could be from the lake to the south.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Chris on April 27, 2019, 02:29:23 PM
What are 'managed lanes' if they are not tolled? Just general purpose lanes with a truck ban? The whole idea of 'managed lanes' is that toll rates would manage demand and thereby traffic flow. If there is no tolling involved, how are they managing it?
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: US 89 on April 27, 2019, 02:34:44 PM
What are 'managed lanes' if they are not tolled? Just general purpose lanes with a truck ban? The whole idea of 'managed lanes' is that toll rates would manage demand and thereby traffic flow. If there is no tolling involved, how are they managing it?

I don't know if this is the case for this example specifically, but they can also manage HOV restrictions. Depending on time of day and/or traffic, they might be able to change the HOV restrictions from 2+ to 3+ or even 4+, or maybe even drop the restriction during light traffic periods.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Plutonic Panda on April 27, 2019, 03:31:05 PM
What are 'managed lanes' if they are not tolled? Just general purpose lanes with a truck ban? The whole idea of 'managed lanes' is that toll rates would manage demand and thereby traffic flow. If there is no tolling involved, how are they managing it?
They are calling them express lanes. Even the term ďmanagedĒ could be spun to say they manage the access more so than the ďregularĒ lanes by having fewer entry and exit points.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Bobby5280 on April 29, 2019, 11:50:58 AM
Apologies for if this was already mentioned and I overlooked it, but those cross section views of the highway give me a bad feeling. Will the finished project feature lane widths more narrow than the 12 foot standard? The cross section drawings sure look like they're shaving off at least one or maybe even two feet from each lane to squeeze the few extra lanes into an already pretty confined space.

I really dislike I-35E going North out of Dallas for the sub-standard narrow lanes on that recently completed widening project. I feel like I could trade paint, touch door handles or take off side view mirrors of other vehicles in the adjacent lanes. That's not so good if you're traveling at "normal" Dallas traffic speeds. A normal 12' wide lane doesn't give off such a dreadful, claustrophobic feeling.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: longhorn on April 29, 2019, 03:46:16 PM
The expansion north of 290 to 45 is not much of an expansion.  Just adding an inside HOV lane. The frontage roads are 3 lanes wide in most areas.

 The area around I-35 and Yeager needs to be rethought though.

I remember when I-35 was rebuilt from 183 to Round Rock back in the 80s and thinking," they rebuilt a freeway to add one lane?!!!" I see TxDot doing the samething again.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: In_Correct on May 01, 2019, 05:00:03 PM
Could the elevated lanes proposal in Austin connect with the elevated lanes proposal in San Antonio? Or would that be overkill?

That would be nearly 70 miles of continuously elevated lanes. I couldnít foresee that happening.

On the other hand, I could definitely see ďexpress/HOVĒ lanes built along the entire length of 35 between the two cities.

I could see that happening.

But you are right. It should not be necessary.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: longhorn on May 07, 2019, 05:07:25 PM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=34&v=bdzTpcoR2fk

A video.

https://www.statesman.com/news/20190507/i-35-changes-dramatically-in-txdots-proposed-8-billion-expansion
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Plutonic Panda on August 20, 2019, 11:55:16 PM
https://www.kvue.com/mobile/article/traffic/debris-on-i-35-northbound-lower-deck-caused-by-crash-on-upper-deck-hitting-rail-txdot-confirms/269-1afe8b2c-2060-4002-aedb-56f3f98a3a46

Looks like this project might need to be fast tracked! I sure hope they build it as proposed. With those tunnels as such could be one of the most impressive stretches of freeway in the world.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Echostatic on August 21, 2019, 12:31:48 AM
I've seen a lot of typical urbanist / anti-highway folk get alarmed by this wreck. If they bundle some message about safety along with the reconstruction I think TxDot can get a lot more support from the city.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Anthony_JK on August 21, 2019, 01:41:19 AM
I've seen a lot of typical urbanist / anti-highway folk get alarmed by this wreck. If they bundle some message about safety along with the reconstruction I think TxDot can get a lot more support from the city.

Nope, won't happen.

The general plan for I-35 in Austin proposed by New Urbanists is to simply keep it at 4 x 4 with no new lane additions, cap the road through downtown, toll it to divert traffic to SH 45 SE and SH 130, and build more light rail to "improve" downtown.

This is a website to their counterproposal: Reconnect Austin (https://www.reconnectaustin.com).

I'm surprised they don't advocate just converting I-35 back into a surface boulevard and divert I-35 onto SH 45 and SH 130.
 
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Plutonic Panda on August 21, 2019, 02:28:03 AM
^^^ geeze...  not surprising. I can see why they want that but I like the widening proposal better. Hopefully their idea is shot down and the widening happens, and soon at that.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: thisdj78 on August 21, 2019, 07:44:54 AM
I've seen a lot of typical urbanist / anti-highway folk get alarmed by this wreck. If they bundle some message about safety along with the reconstruction I think TxDot can get a lot more support from the city.

Nope, won't happen.

The general plan for I-35 in Austin proposed by New Urbanists is to simply keep it at 4 x 4 with no new lane additions, cap the road through downtown, toll it to divert traffic to SH 45 SE and SH 130, and build more light rail to "improve" downtown.

This is a website to their counterproposal: Reconnect Austin (https://www.reconnectaustin.com).

I'm surprised they don't advocate just converting I-35 back into a surface boulevard and divert I-35 onto SH 45 and SH 130.

No matter what, 35 needs to be shifted to 130/45.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Bobby5280 on August 21, 2019, 02:10:14 PM
TX-130 is too crooked. Additionally, If I-35 was shifted to the TX-130 corridor that would give the New Urbanists an even better shot at dismantling segments of the current I-35 freeway.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Plutonic Panda on August 21, 2019, 02:18:54 PM
Yeah I'd prefer keeping 2di's going right past city centres and bypasses available if so. They need to remove the tolls on the 130 and widen it to 6-8 lanes if it isn't already.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: thisdj78 on August 21, 2019, 03:32:11 PM
Yeah I'd prefer keeping 2di's going right past city centres and bypasses available if so. They need to remove the tolls on the 130 and widen it to 6-8 lanes if it isn't already.

They are currently in the process of widening 130 to 6 lanes.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: thisdj78 on August 21, 2019, 03:35:19 PM
TX-130 is too crooked. Additionally, If I-35 was shifted to the TX-130 corridor that would give the New Urbanists an even better shot at dismantling segments of the current I-35 freeway.

At the very least it should be an interstate I-x35. As far as the existing route, it will still be too important of a thoroughfare to be removed in part or completely.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Plutonic Panda on August 21, 2019, 04:06:30 PM
TX-130 is too crooked. Additionally, If I-35 was shifted to the TX-130 corridor that would give the New Urbanists an even better shot at dismantling segments of the current I-35 freeway.

At the very least it should be an interstate I-x35. As far as the existing route, it will still be too important of a thoroughfare to be removed in part or completely.
Glad they are widening it. I wonder what the impact would be removing tolls and adding a 3di designation. Would 8 lanes even be enough? lol... seriously there would seem to be an uptick in traffic.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: longhorn on August 21, 2019, 04:34:13 PM
TX-130 is too crooked. Additionally, If I-35 was shifted to the TX-130 corridor that would give the New Urbanists an even better shot at dismantling segments of the current I-35 freeway.
At the very least it should be an interstate I-x35. As far as the existing route, it will still be too important of a thoroughfare to be removed in part or completely.
Glad they are widening it. I wonder what the impact would be removing tolls and adding a 3di designation. Would 8 lanes even be enough? lol... seriously there would seem to be an uptick in traffic.


Not sure one can legally take a tollway away from the consortium that has a 99 year lease or something like that on it. Don't think they will be in the selling mood, it prints money. And if the tolls did come down in a matter of a few years the whole stretch will have been developed, and kiss small town feel Hutto (its gone now) good bye.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: thisdj78 on August 21, 2019, 05:26:44 PM
TX-130 is too crooked. Additionally, If I-35 was shifted to the TX-130 corridor that would give the New Urbanists an even better shot at dismantling segments of the current I-35 freeway.

At the very least it should be an interstate I-x35. As far as the existing route, it will still be too important of a thoroughfare to be removed in part or completely.
Glad they are widening it. I wonder what the impact would be removing tolls and adding a 3di designation. Would 8 lanes even be enough? lol... seriously there would seem to be an uptick in traffic.

I think 6 would be enough. Traffic would probably be similar to 35 between Austin and New Braunfels (which is still pretty heavy but manageable at 6 or 8 lanes).

Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: dfwmapper on August 22, 2019, 05:30:57 AM
6 lanes from Georgetown to Mustang Ridge should be enough, and you'd want it designed to easily go to 8 between US 79 and SH 71 since that's where the heaviest traffic is now and will be in the future. Mustang Ridge to Seguin would probably be fine with just 4 lanes, since a lot of the traffic would continue west on SH 45S to reach I-35 and Buda, Kyle, San Marcos, and New Braunfels.

Getting I-10 to 6 lanes all the way from San Antonio to SH 130 would have to be done though, and that at least is in the works. I-10's AADT is already over 50000 between Loop 1604 and Seguin, with over 25% truck traffic. The south end of SH 130 doesn't even hit 10000 AADT now, but if it was free and the signed route for I-35, I bet it would hit 40k easy.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: sprjus4 on August 22, 2019, 10:09:54 AM
As of now, only 22 miles of SH-130 are currently being widened to 6 lanes - between SH-45 North and SH-71.

Out of the entire corridor though, that is indeed the busiest stretch, with AADT on the mainline varying between 40,000 - 45,000.

The remainder of the corridor is below 30,000 AADT, with the exception of the 5 mile stretch between US-79 and SH-45 North which has between 35,000 - 40,000 AADT on the mainline.

In the near future (5-10 years), I could see at least that 5 mile segment expanded to 6 lanes, along with an additional 22 miles (I-35 to US-79 and SH-71 to US-181) being studied for expansion as traffic counts increase.

The segment south of the US-181 / SH-45 South / SH-130 junction has 5,000 - 15,000 AADT, and I don't forsee an expansion being warranted there anytime soon.

I-10 between I-410 and SH-130 at Seguin warrants expansion to 6 lanes, carrying 50,000+ AADT, along with I-410 between I-35 South and I-10 East which carries 40,000 - 60,000 AADT.

If SH-130 was to be untolled, completing the remaining 27 miles on the northern half from SH-45 South northwards to 6 lanes would definitely be warranted, along with widening I-10 between SH-130 and I-410, and I-410 between I-35 South and I-10 East to 6 lanes. The 40 mile southern segment of the toll road has plenty room for growth and would likely only top out at 20,000 - 35,000 AADT if the tolls were eliminated. The segment currently carrying around 45,000 AADT today would likely top out at 75,000 - 80,000 AADT, though if local traffic increases with increased growth, could be higher, and -might- warrant 8 lanes at some point.

I think a long term goal of expanding the entire northern segment, I-10, and I-410 to 6 lanes, and buying out the tolls would definitely help relieve the I-35 corridor.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: dfwmapper on August 23, 2019, 02:00:27 AM
The I-10 stuff is happening regardless. I-410 to Loop 1604 is already under construction. Loop 1604 to Graytown Rd was let this month, and Graytown to the Bexar/Guadalupe county line (Cibolo Creek) is scheduled to be let in April 2020. AAMPO's TIP for FY 2021 has US 90 west of Seguin to SH 130 as well as building 3 flyovers at the I-10/I-410 interchange (E->S, N->W, S->W). The MTP has more ramps listed for FY2025, and the remaining 9 miles between the Bexar/Guadalupe county line and US 90 in FY2028. The latter would presumably be advanced if there were serious plans to remove tolls on 130 before then.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Plutonic Panda on February 27, 2020, 06:07:09 PM
It looks like the Central Part of the project through downtown has found funding. I am very excited for the proposed tunnels. This will easily be one of the most impressive stretches of freeway in the world if built as proposed.

https://www.kxan.com/traffic/texas-transportation-commission-unveils-plan-to-fund-i-35-expansion-project/
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: MaxConcrete on February 27, 2020, 07:04:57 PM
Wow, that's a surprise. It was listed as a "Potential update to the 2020 Unified Transportation Program" in the agenda.

The presentation is now online (but the meeting video is not yet online as of this writing).

http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf (http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf)

The political powers probably realize the importance of Austin to the future of Texas, since Austin is a tech hub and is growing by leaps and bounds. Other sectors of the Texas economy, mainly oil & gas, face an uncertain future and Houston especially is facing a grim future as the fossil fuel sector permanently declines.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: MaxConcrete on February 27, 2020, 07:40:47 PM
This will easily be one of the most impressive stretches of freeway in the world if built as proposed.

I think driving through downtown Houston on I-69 and I-45 will be much more impressive if/when the North Houston Highway Improvement project is completed (currently slated to start 2022). It will feature a peak of 33 traffic lanes on the north side of downtown.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: sprjus4 on February 27, 2020, 07:53:54 PM
Wow, that's a surprise. It was listed as a "Potential update to the 2020 Unified Transportation Program" in the agenda.

The presentation is now online (but the meeting video is not yet online as of this writing).

http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf (http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf)

The political powers probably realize the importance of Austin to the future of Texas, since Austin is a tech hub and is growing by leaps and bounds. Other sectors of the Texas economy, mainly oil & gas, face an uncertain future and Houston especially is facing a grim future as the fossil fuel sector permanently declines.
Still missing that link to Houston though...  :hmmm:
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Plutonic Panda on February 27, 2020, 08:00:39 PM
33 traffic lanes is awesome. Iím wondering if we will ever see a freeway break 50. My wowing over the Austin proposal has to do with the multi level tunnel. Does such a setup exist currently anywhere?
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: sprjus4 on February 27, 2020, 08:10:40 PM
This will easily be one of the most impressive stretches of freeway in the world if built as proposed.

I think driving through downtown Houston on I-69 and I-45 will be much more impressive if/when the North Houston Highway Improvement project is completed (currently slated to start 2022). It will feature a peak of 33 traffic lanes on the north side of downtown.
Looks like the Katy Freeway will be surpassed  :-o
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Plutonic Panda on February 27, 2020, 08:16:56 PM
This will easily be one of the most impressive stretches of freeway in the world if built as proposed.

I think driving through downtown Houston on I-69 and I-45 will be much more impressive if/when the North Houston Highway Improvement project is completed (currently slated to start 2022). It will feature a peak of 33 traffic lanes on the north side of downtown.
Looks like the Katy Freeway will be surpassed  :-o
IIRC there was a freeway to be widened in the IE in SoCal that was going to exceed the number of lanes on the Katy Freeway.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: MaxConcrete on February 27, 2020, 10:16:30 PM
Michael Morris, director of NCTCOG, is furious that this funding for IH 35 in Austin will divert $1 billion of funds which would normally be expected to go to North Texas. He's trying to get North Texas political entities to try to force the managed lanes on IH 35 to be tolled.

See item six, starting around 10 minutes in

https://nctcog.swagit.com/play/02272020-674 (https://nctcog.swagit.com/play/02272020-674)
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Chris on February 28, 2020, 04:30:03 AM
My wowing over the Austin proposal has to do with the multi level tunnel. Does such a setup exist currently anywhere?

Twin-level tunnels are rare, but they do exist here and there. 3-level roads (frontage roads on top of two freeway levels) are probably much rarer.

Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Chris on February 28, 2020, 04:35:27 AM
Michael Morris, director of NCTCOG, is furious that this funding for IH 35 in Austin will divert $1 billion of funds which would normally be expected to go to North Texas. He's trying to get North Texas political entities to try to force the managed lanes on IH 35 to be tolled.

To be fair, Austin's problems are significant and so far they have almost exclusively built toll roads to address population growth. And the problems on I-35 cannot be significantly reduced without a high-cost solution.

I wonder how they are going to 'manage' the traffic on the managed lanes without tolls. In a fast-growing area like Austin, the managed lanes will likely be overwhelmed by traffic growth after some time, so there needs to be some kind of tolling to guarantee free-flow conditions. Maybe not to the extreme levels that the I-66 tolls in Northern Virginia have though.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: thisdj78 on February 28, 2020, 07:57:30 AM
Michael Morris, director of NCTCOG, is furious that this funding for IH 35 in Austin will divert $1 billion of funds which would normally be expected to go to North Texas. He's trying to get North Texas political entities to try to force the managed lanes on IH 35 to be tolled.

To be fair, Austin's problems are significant and so far they have almost exclusively built toll roads to address population growth. And the problems on I-35 cannot be significantly reduced without a high-cost solution.

I wonder how they are going to 'manage' the traffic on the managed lanes without tolls. In a fast-growing area like Austin, the managed lanes will likely be overwhelmed by traffic growth after some time, so there needs to be some kind of tolling to guarantee free-flow conditions. Maybe not to the extreme levels that the I-66 tolls in Northern Virginia have though.

I imagine they will be managed similar to HOV lanes, with police periodically positioned to hand out tickets (assuming thereís enough shoulder width for them to park in)
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: sprjus4 on February 28, 2020, 08:12:20 AM
^

If the HOV lanes being constructed in the San Antonio area in lieu of previously proposed HO/T lanes are any indication, Iíd say they would be.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: texaskdog on February 28, 2020, 08:25:34 AM
Wow, that's a surprise. It was listed as a "Potential update to the 2020 Unified Transportation Program" in the agenda.

The presentation is now online (but the meeting video is not yet online as of this writing).

http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf (http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf)

The political powers probably realize the importance of Austin to the future of Texas, since Austin is a tech hub and is growing by leaps and bounds. Other sectors of the Texas economy, mainly oil & gas, face an uncertain future and Houston especially is facing a grim future as the fossil fuel sector permanently declines.
Still missing that link to Houston though...  :hmmm:

Well we have TWO expressways to get there
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: thisdj78 on February 28, 2020, 08:29:16 AM
Wow, that's a surprise. It was listed as a "Potential update to the 2020 Unified Transportation Program" in the agenda.

The presentation is now online (but the meeting video is not yet online as of this writing).

http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf (http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf)

The political powers probably realize the importance of Austin to the future of Texas, since Austin is a tech hub and is growing by leaps and bounds. Other sectors of the Texas economy, mainly oil & gas, face an uncertain future and Houston especially is facing a grim future as the fossil fuel sector permanently declines.
Still missing that link to Houston though...  :hmmm:

Well we have TWO expressways to get there

Well, ďExpressĒ is relative....thereís still stoplights (several on 290, a few on 71) on both routes.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: sprjus4 on February 28, 2020, 02:22:55 PM
^

The eventual goal should be an interstate highway, but at minimum they need to eliminate the final traffic signals and bypass the remaining towns.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Echostatic on November 12, 2020, 11:13:07 AM
Alternative 1:

(https://www.kxan.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/40/2020/11/build-1-pt-1-1.jpg?resize=876,646)

(https://www.kxan.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/40/2020/11/build-1-pt-2.jpg?resize=876,652)

Alternative 2/3:

(https://www.kxan.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/40/2020/11/build-2-and-3.jpg?resize=876,658)
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: MaxConcrete on November 12, 2020, 08:06:44 PM
Build Alternative 2/3 will require a major right-of-way clearance between Manor Road and Airport Boulevard. To avoid the cemetery, it will need to take the UT-Austin football practice facility. It looks like it will also require ROW clearance in other sections, although not major. That's going to be a tough sell politically.

However, the Alternative 1 tunnel option may be impossible to construct without closing the entire freeway between Manor Rd and Airport Blvd for a significant period of time, maybe a year or more. If they can keep it open, it would be a very minimal number of lanes. I don't see how they can keep the frontage road lanes open and build the new frontage roads as shown. With Alternative 2/3, they can probably keep all existing lanes open by building one side (on the cleared ROW) first.

I prefer to see 2/3 as the recommended option. The final recommendation may be a combination of both to limit the tunnel sections to only areas where they are absolutely necessary. I'm going to suggest that they consider building the football field on a deck above the freeway if the practice facility cannot be relocated. That would be expensive, but probably less expensive than a tunnel.

UPDATE: Here are the comments I submitted
Quote

I support the I-35 improvement project. I support Build Alternatives 2 and 3.

Here are the problems with Build Alternative 1, and why it should be avoided.
1. Construction between MLK and Airport Boulevard will probably require closure of the entire freeway for a long period of time, maybe more than a year. If the freeway can be kept open, it would probably be a minimal number of lanes, and the extra cost could be very high.
2. It looks like it will be impossible or very difficult to keep the frontage roads open during construction, which would be a problem for properties along the frontage roads.
3. Tunnels introduce risks with possible fires inside the tunnels. This requires continuous monitoring and firefighting/rescue units on standby 24 hours a day.
4. Tunnels normally have higher maintenance costs, especially as they age.
5. Tunnels are more expensive than conventional freeways.

Reasons I support Build Alternatives 2/3
1. Between MLK and Airport, the existing freeway can remain open during construction while new lanes are built on new right-of-way.
2. While a right-of-way clearance will be required between MLK and Airport, most of the properties on the east side of the freeway are lower-tier commercial properties and can be acquired with minimal impact to the community.
3. These alternatives provide a consistent freeway design for the entire corridor.


Other Suggestions.
1. It looks like Build Alternatives 2/3 will require land from the UT-Austin football practice facility. If it is not possible to relocate the practice facility, consider building a deck above the freeway to accommodate the football facility. The deck would probably be needed over only the west side (southbound lanes) of the freeway. While this will be expensive, it is probably less expensive than the tunnel option.
2. Right-of-way should be acquired where needed to maintain high design standards. (In other words, don't compromise design standards to save a few buildings.)
3. A hybrid approach may be needed. That would mean using Build Alternatives 2/3 for most of the corridor, and using short tunnels only where absolutely necessary.
4. The downtown bypass and access-controlled frontage roads options mentioned in presentation slide 32 have the potential to be very helpful for ensuring good surface flow through downtown. The bypass could also act as a collector-distributor to minimize merge/weave zones on the main lanes through downtown.

Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: Plutonic Panda on November 12, 2020, 09:36:13 PM
I prefer alternative one. Less ROW in some places and generally a better design although more expensive will allow communities to better reconnect. The only issue I have with it is I wish there were 6 or 7 GP lanes each way instead of 5. But overall I love it.
Title: Re: Austin: TxDOT solicits consultants for IH 35 express lanes
Post by: TXtoNJ on November 14, 2020, 01:39:54 AM
Alternative 1 is the only one that even has a slight political chance of getting built.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: MaxConcrete on August 10, 2021, 05:29:29 PM
There is a public meeting today with the latest information. There's a large amount of info on the meeting web site
https://www.txdot.gov/inside-txdot/get-involved/about/hearings-meetings/austin/081021.html (https://www.txdot.gov/inside-txdot/get-involved/about/hearings-meetings/austin/081021.html)

The big news is that Alternative 1, which has the deep tunnels, is not being carried forward for further study. In other words, it is eliminated. I'm glad to see this, see my earlier post from 12-Nov-2020 for the reasons.


In the upcoming months we will find out if TxDOT can keep the process moving forward, or if opposition is going to mount an effort to kill the project, as is happening on NHHIP in Houston.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Echostatic on August 10, 2021, 06:16:30 PM
Nobody in Austin government positions wants this to happen. Any effort to push this through will need to come from the state, and surrounding cities and counties.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on August 10, 2021, 06:34:13 PM
With alternative 1 being axed Iíll review the other alternatives but from what I saw alternative 1 was the best design requiring the least amount of ROW. In all likelihood, Iíll be sending a comment to TxDOT stating my opposition to this project now. We donít need another massive ribbon of concrete cutting right through downtown. The tunnels would have lessened the ROW impacts.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: kphoger on August 10, 2021, 08:02:00 PM
In all likelihood, Iíll be sending a comment to TxDOT ...

Are you even a Texas resident?
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on August 10, 2021, 08:54:36 PM
In all likelihood, Iíll be sending a comment to TxDOT ...

Are you even a Texas resident?
Please show me where being a resident of Texas is a requirement to provide feedback for a project in Texas.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: thisdj78 on August 10, 2021, 11:50:48 PM
In all likelihood, Iíll be sending a comment to TxDOT ...

Are you even a Texas resident?
Please show me where being a resident of Texas is a requirement to provide feedback for a project in Texas.

I think it was the ďWe donít needĒ part that raised eyebrows.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on August 11, 2021, 12:38:44 AM
In all likelihood, Iíll be sending a comment to TxDOT ...

Are you even a Texas resident?
Please show me where being a resident of Texas is a requirement to provide feedback for a project in Texas.

I think it was the ďWe donít needĒ part that raised eyebrows.
So then why wasnít that quoted? I can easily defend that argument if you want to quote it and debate me over it but be more specific.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Rothman on August 11, 2021, 06:51:55 AM
In all likelihood, Iíll be sending a comment to TxDOT ...

Are you even a Texas resident?
Please show me where being a resident of Texas is a requirement to provide feedback for a project in Texas.

I think it was the ďWe donít needĒ part that raised eyebrows.
So then why wasnít that quoted? I can easily defend that argument if you want to quote it and debate me over it but be more specific.
You don't remember what you yourself said?
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: armadillo speedbump on August 11, 2021, 12:11:11 PM
Well he's a Californian, so there's a 30% chance he'll eventually move to Texas.

Plus it's an interstate.  Plus most of the clowns from the usual anti-road and enviromarxist organizations that always submit comments in opposition are from out of state.  Let him weigh in.

Anyways, if the usual city idiots block this much needed expansion, the legislature needs to remove tolls from the 130 bypass and slap them on the portion of I-35 inside Austin city limits.  Let the city pay for their once again inconveniencing the rest of the metro, region, and state.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: kphoger on August 11, 2021, 12:13:00 PM


In all likelihood, Iíll be sending a comment to TxDOT ...

Are you even a Texas resident?

Please show me where being a resident of Texas is a requirement to provide feedback for a project in Texas.

Well, what I was really wondering is why TxDOT would even care what you or I think about it.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on August 11, 2021, 12:14:31 PM


In all likelihood, Iíll be sending a comment to TxDOT ...

Are you even a Texas resident?

Please show me where being a resident of Texas is a requirement to provide feedback for a project in Texas.

Well, what I was really wondering is why TxDOT would even care what you or I think about it.
Well they do have public input to add comments to the project. My opinion will almost certainly make difference but I'm still going to give it.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on August 13, 2021, 03:50:43 PM
And then thereís people that think I-35 should be downgraded to a six lane road. Itís like a comedy show lol

https://www.kut.org/transportation/2021-08-12/txdot-slams-brakes-on-proposals-to-shrink-i-35-footprint
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Anthony_JK on August 14, 2021, 04:31:38 AM
And then thereís people that think I-35 should be downgraded to a six lane road. Itís like a comedy show lol

https://www.kut.org/transportation/2021-08-12/txdot-slams-brakes-on-proposals-to-shrink-i-35-footprint

Yeah, right.

Convert a 10-lane freeway and the main traffic generator that carries nearly 130K VPH into...a six-lane surface boulevard.

So, do they also pay the costs of diverting I-35 mainline traffic to SH 45 and Toll 130, or do they call for removing the tolls on 130 and diverting I-35 there?

These freaks have lost their Goddess dang minds.

I'm way Left of center politically, and for more public transport. But, this is MADNESS.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: achilles765 on August 14, 2021, 12:55:51 PM
Wow, that's a surprise. It was listed as a "Potential update to the 2020 Unified Transportation Program" in the agenda.

The presentation is now online (but the meeting video is not yet online as of this writing).

http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf (http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf)

The political powers probably realize the importance of Austin to the future of Texas, since Austin is a tech hub and is growing by leaps and bounds. Other sectors of the Texas economy, mainly oil & gas, face an uncertain future and Houston especially is facing a grim future as the fossil fuel sector permanently declines.

I don't think we face a grim future here in houston.  Yes, fossil fuels are still a major driver of our economy, but its far from the only one. We also have one of the largest medical research districts in the world, banking and finance, and green energy jobs. 
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: TXtoNJ on August 14, 2021, 02:35:29 PM
Wow, that's a surprise. It was listed as a "Potential update to the 2020 Unified Transportation Program" in the agenda.

The presentation is now online (but the meeting video is not yet online as of this writing).

http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf (http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/commission/2020/0227/4-presentation.pdf)

The political powers probably realize the importance of Austin to the future of Texas, since Austin is a tech hub and is growing by leaps and bounds. Other sectors of the Texas economy, mainly oil & gas, face an uncertain future and Houston especially is facing a grim future as the fossil fuel sector permanently declines.

I don't think we face a grim future here in houston.  Yes, fossil fuels are still a major driver of our economy, but its far from the only one. We also have one of the largest medical research districts in the world, banking and finance, and green energy jobs. 

Houston's problem (saying this as someone who grew up there), is that without oil and gas, it has relatively few geographical advantages that would make it globally prominent. Banking, finance, and corporate headquarters much prefer D/FW to Southeast Texas, mainly for the more amenable climate. Look at Baltimore if you want to see what a port and medicine get you alone. Green energy execs want to live in more environmentally pleasant, or culturally prominent areas (I think Austin/San Antonio are going to be the big winners there).

Houston has a Detroit problem that I think many are in denial about - many people will continue to live there (largely from inertia and international immigration), but I think there's going to be a long-term decline in good-paying jobs.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Scott5114 on August 14, 2021, 02:56:10 PM


In all likelihood, Iíll be sending a comment to TxDOT ...

Are you even a Texas resident?

Please show me where being a resident of Texas is a requirement to provide feedback for a project in Texas.

Well, what I was really wondering is why TxDOT would even care what you or I think about it.
Well they do have public input to add comments to the project. My opinion will almost certainly make difference but I'm still going to give it.

Given the average Texan's opinions of both places, I wonder which address of yours would cause them to chuck it in the garbage faster, the California one or the Oklahoma one? :-D
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on August 14, 2021, 04:09:06 PM


In all likelihood, Iíll be sending a comment to TxDOT ...

Are you even a Texas resident?

Please show me where being a resident of Texas is a requirement to provide feedback for a project in Texas.

Well, what I was really wondering is why TxDOT would even care what you or I think about it.
Well they do have public input to add comments to the project. My opinion will almost certainly make difference but I'm still going to give it.

Given the average Texan's opinions of both places, I wonder which address of yours would cause them to chuck it in the garbage faster, the California one or the Oklahoma one? :-D
Thereís plenty of addresses in Austin to choose from lol
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: MaxConcrete on September 15, 2021, 01:33:53 PM
The Austin Business Journal has an article about potential parks built on decks above the planned modernized freeway
https://www.bizjournals.com/austin/news/2021/09/08/i-35-cap-and-stitch-feedback-wanted.html?cx_testId=40&cx_testVariant=cx_21&cx_artPos=8#cxrecs_s (https://www.bizjournals.com/austin/news/2021/09/08/i-35-cap-and-stitch-feedback-wanted.html?cx_testId=40&cx_testVariant=cx_21&cx_artPos=8#cxrecs_s)

Quote
City leaders are gathering community input on a future "cap and stitch" project proposed for I-35 in downtown Austin.

The goal of capping and stitching the interstate is to mend the historic cultural divide between downtown and East Austin. The proposal includes building large decks, or caps, over I-35 to "stitch" the two sides together and improve mobility. Nothing has been finalized yet, and the city has launched surveys to garner community feedback to inform the design processes. Funding would be identified at a later date.

The link to the site is https://nam11.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.austintexas.gov%2Fatxcapstitch&data=04%7C01%7Ckhardison%40bizjournals.com%7C0f7abd09de9a44b585fd08d972440a9d%7Cc8f302bab2fe4389b720e285f4fe1b2a%7C0%7C1%7C637666458841559248%7CUnknown%7CTWFpbGZsb3d8eyJWIjoiMC4wLjAwMDAiLCJQIjoiV2luMzIiLCJBTiI6Ik1haWwiLCJXVCI6Mn0%3D%7C1000&sdata=03d5rF3YgqvMVyPzO4fuw%2B4OrW9%2BtfR24zt%2FKPr3cxM%3D&reserved=0 (https://nam11.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.austintexas.gov%2Fatxcapstitch&data=04%7C01%7Ckhardison%40bizjournals.com%7C0f7abd09de9a44b585fd08d972440a9d%7Cc8f302bab2fe4389b720e285f4fe1b2a%7C0%7C1%7C637666458841559248%7CUnknown%7CTWFpbGZsb3d8eyJWIjoiMC4wLjAwMDAiLCJQIjoiV2luMzIiLCJBTiI6Ik1haWwiLCJXVCI6Mn0%3D%7C1000&sdata=03d5rF3YgqvMVyPzO4fuw%2B4OrW9%2BtfR24zt%2FKPr3cxM%3D&reserved=0)

This map shows possible deck locations https://app.e-builder.net/public/fileview_fileview_act.aspx?portaltype=7&f={614752ed-2eb1-42ca-a9c3-a11c998125a8} (https://app.e-builder.net/public/fileview_fileview_act.aspx?portaltype=7&f={614752ed-2eb1-42ca-a9c3-a11c998125a8})

Decks are expensive and the overall cost becomes very expensive when a large area is covered. The deck for Klyde Warren park was $44.5 million in 2009, at the depths of the recession when costs were low. It is 1100 feet long. At today's prices, it would probably be around $70 million. The fully-developed Warren park cost $110 million when opened around 2013. The distance from 8th Street to Cesar Chavez is 2500 feet. Using 50% inflation since Warren park was built, the cost would scale to around $375 million.  Creating three single-block parks from 5th to 8th probably would have little benefit. The section from 4th to Chavez is around 1000 feet and could probably be done for $150 million.

The opposition may be more willing to accept the IH-35 project if the some deck parks are included.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Bobby5280 on September 15, 2021, 08:40:40 PM
Deck parks can be nice. But, yeah, they're expensive. One alternative is dressing up the intersections where major streets cross I-35 to kind of hide the highway and make the crossing more friendly to pedestrians.

In Seattle on WA-520 in the Clyde Hill area the exits for 84th Avenue and 92nd Avenue are interesting. The streets cross over WA-520 as mini deck parks. The caps are big enough to hold something like a roundabout and a decent amount of green space. The 520 highway is mostly hidden to anyone walking or biking across the highway at those locations.

The only drawback with that approach is it requires the super highway to be depressed down into a trench. But so does any plan for building big deck parks.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: kernals12 on September 15, 2021, 09:06:53 PM
Austin has 3 north south freeways bypassing downtown (soon to be 4 once Loop 360 loses its signalized intersections). People don't use them simply because they're tolled while 35 is not. How does the cost of this project compare to the cost of de-tolling 130?
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: kernals12 on September 15, 2021, 09:07:33 PM
And then thereís people that think I-35 should be downgraded to a six lane road. Itís like a comedy show lol

https://www.kut.org/transportation/2021-08-12/txdot-slams-brakes-on-proposals-to-shrink-i-35-footprint

Yeah, right.

Convert a 10-lane freeway and the main traffic generator that carries nearly 130K VPH into...a six-lane surface boulevard.

So, do they also pay the costs of diverting I-35 mainline traffic to SH 45 and Toll 130, or do they call for removing the tolls on 130 and diverting I-35 there?

These freaks have lost their Goddess dang minds.

I'm way Left of center politically, and for more public transport. But, this is MADNESS.
Muh Embarcadero Freeway
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: bwana39 on September 15, 2021, 10:23:09 PM
Austin has 3 north south freeways bypassing downtown (soon to be 4 once Loop 360 loses its signalized intersections). People don't use them simply because they're tolled while 35 is not. How does the cost of this project compare to the cost of de-tolling 130?

130 is 2 or 3 lanes each direction. There is little possibility that it could replace I-35's volume. It isn't like there is no one out there now.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: DenverBrian on September 15, 2021, 11:22:53 PM
Austin has 3 north south freeways bypassing downtown (soon to be 4 once Loop 360 loses its signalized intersections). People don't use them simply because they're tolled while 35 is not. How does the cost of this project compare to the cost of de-tolling 130?

130 is 2 or 3 lanes each direction. There is little possibility that it could replace I-35's volume. It isn't like there is no one out there now.
it wouldn't have to replace ALL of IH-35's volume, yes? And it's already at interstate standard. De-toll it and bring it into the Interstate system as IH-235, then sign the heck out of it as "avoid congestion, use the bypass to Dallas/San Antonio" or some such.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: sprjus4 on September 16, 2021, 12:09:54 AM
SH-130 would need to be at least 6 lanes wide throughout to handle being a re-routed I-35, with 8 to 10 lanes in many areas.

Leave it how it is. SH-130 is an effective toll bypass route, a lot of it recently expanded to 6-8 lanes in its busier portion, I-35 remains the existing main, toll free through route.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Anthony_JK on September 16, 2021, 01:23:17 AM

[redacted]

Yeah, right.

Convert a 10-lane freeway and the main traffic generator that carries nearly 130K VPH into...a six-lane surface boulevard.

So, do they also pay the costs of diverting I-35 mainline traffic to SH 45 and Toll 130, or do they call for removing the tolls on 130 and diverting I-35 there?

These freaks have lost their Goddess dang minds.

I'm way Left of center politically, and for more public transport. But, this is MADNESS.
Muh Embarcadero Freeway

I have no problem - well, maybe a little bit, but not much -- with San Francisco leveling the Embarcadero, because it was proven to not be earthquake proof, and it wasn't a major corridor.

I-35 in Austin, OTOH, is something else altogether. You simply do not undercut a major freeway corridor and reduce it to a six lane boulevard. You just don't.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: thisdj78 on September 16, 2021, 07:59:39 AM
SH-130 would need to be at least 6 lanes wide throughout to handle being a re-routed I-35, with 8 to 10 lanes in many areas.

Leave it how it is. SH-130 is an effective toll bypass route, a lot of it recently expanded to 6-8 lanes in its busier portion, I-35 remains the existing main, toll free through route.

That would only be assuming the original I-35 is no longer viable. The key is directing proper traffic once it was toll-free. All ďthruĒ traffic including trucks would need to use 130 (aka the newly designated *35) and all local traffic on the original 35. I think 130 can handle itÖit only needs to be 6 lanes in the sections where they are already adding lanes. Yes in the future it will need expansion and luckily it is built to easily do that.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: kernals12 on September 16, 2021, 08:32:50 AM
14% of all traffic on I-35 in Austin  (https://tti.tamu.edu/news/researchers-study-traffic-make-up-on-texas-i-35-sh-130/) is just passing through, neither starting or stopping in the Austin region. Diverting just that would make an enormous difference in congestion. And of the remaining 86%, surely a large proportion is not going downtown and could use 183 or the MoPac.

Honestly, this just illustrates why toll roads are stupid. Texas needs to add 10-15 cents to the gas tax and get rid of tolls.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: I-35 on September 16, 2021, 09:43:44 AM
14% of all traffic on I-35 in Austin  (https://tti.tamu.edu/news/researchers-study-traffic-make-up-on-texas-i-35-sh-130/) is just passing through, neither starting or stopping in the Austin region. Diverting just that would make an enormous difference in congestion. And of the remaining 86%, surely a large proportion is not going downtown and could use 183 or the MoPac.

Honestly, this just illustrates why toll roads are stupid. Texas needs to add 10-15 cents to the gas tax and get rid of tolls.

Are you under some assumption that rural Texans aren't the ones running the state legislature?  The ones that don't live within 300 miles of a toll road?  We won't see a gas tax hike anytime soon.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: TXtoNJ on September 17, 2021, 11:08:39 AM
Austin has 3 north south freeways bypassing downtown (soon to be 4 once Loop 360 loses its signalized intersections). People don't use them simply because they're tolled while 35 is not. How does the cost of this project compare to the cost of de-tolling 130?

What are you even talking about. Mopac between 183 and 290 is free. 183 east of downtown also has free-flowing frontage roads - there are bypasses for every stoplight.

I swear, the funniest thing about this board are the people making grand determinations on why people do something or another in cities they've never visited, much less lived in.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Bobby5280 on September 17, 2021, 01:29:50 PM
The other thing even more funny (or more annoying) is they want to force some kind of ideal on a community, such as ripping out I-35 and reducing it to a mere surface street completely infected with traffic signals. They want to see that happen, but they don't live there to experience the consequences.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: ski-man on September 17, 2021, 01:57:38 PM
Austin has 3 north south freeways bypassing downtown (soon to be 4 once Loop 360 loses its signalized intersections). People don't use them simply because they're tolled while 35 is not. How does the cost of this project compare to the cost of de-tolling 130?

What are you even talking about. Mopac between 183 and 290 is free. 183 east of downtown also has free-flowing frontage roads - there are bypasses for every stoplight.

I swear, the funniest thing about this board are the people making grand determinations on why people do something or another in cities they've never visited, much less lived in.
BINGO!!
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on September 27, 2021, 09:20:22 PM
Article about the proposal in downtown. The expected irrational argument to not widen it because induced demand repeating the same crap. I will beat this horse again and say Iím willing to side with the opposition on this given the fact I was for the tunnel option to reduce the footprint.

https://www.kut.org/transportation/2021-09-24/expanded-i-35-could-induce-demand-and-make-pollution-worse-transportation-experts-say
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: I-35 on September 28, 2021, 10:00:18 AM
Article about the proposal in downtown. The expected irrational argument to not widen it because induced demand repeating the same crap. I will beat this horse again and say Iím willing to side with the opposition on this given the fact I was for the tunnel option to reduce the footprint.

https://www.kut.org/transportation/2021-09-24/expanded-i-35-could-induce-demand-and-make-pollution-worse-transportation-experts-say

I think they've got to tunnel it.  It's a hundred year decision, do it right.  This isn't Waco or Lubbock, it's through some of the highest priced real estate in Texas.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: jadebenn on October 20, 2021, 09:11:15 AM
Another article (https://slate.com/business/2021/10/austin-texas-interstate-35-expansion-20-lanes.html) on this project.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: thisdj78 on October 20, 2021, 04:52:22 PM
Article about the proposal in downtown. The expected irrational argument to not widen it because induced demand repeating the same crap. I will beat this horse again and say Iím willing to side with the opposition on this given the fact I was for the tunnel option to reduce the footprint.

https://www.kut.org/transportation/2021-09-24/expanded-i-35-could-induce-demand-and-make-pollution-worse-transportation-experts-say

I think they've got to tunnel it.  It's a hundred year decision, do it right.  This isn't Waco or Lubbock, it's through some of the highest priced real estate in Texas.

I think the cost and time it would take to do what would make it nearly impossible to tunnel. I think the best solution is focus on making 130 free and an ďI-x35Ē route.

If they re-construct (or even remove) some exits from the existing 35, I think that could help. Also maybe even adding a lane to the upper deck could be done.

But it seems that a complete tear down or expansion isnít going to get done.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on October 20, 2021, 05:57:02 PM
Article about the proposal in downtown. The expected irrational argument to not widen it because induced demand repeating the same crap. I will beat this horse again and say Iím willing to side with the opposition on this given the fact I was for the tunnel option to reduce the footprint.

https://www.kut.org/transportation/2021-09-24/expanded-i-35-could-induce-demand-and-make-pollution-worse-transportation-experts-say

I think they've got to tunnel it.  It's a hundred year decision, do it right.  This isn't Waco or Lubbock, it's through some of the highest priced real estate in Texas.

I think the cost and time it would take to do what would make it nearly impossible to tunnel. I think the best solution is focus on making 130 free and an ďI-x35Ē route.

If they re-construct (or even remove) some exits from the existing 35, I think that could help. Also maybe even adding a lane to the upper deck could be done.

But it seems that a complete tear down or expansion isnít going to get done.
Itís not impossible to do it. Itís the fact we as a country are unable to build great things mentality is what stops it. It can and should be built. The it costs too much and takes too long argument is malarkey.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: thisdj78 on October 20, 2021, 06:34:23 PM
Article about the proposal in downtown. The expected irrational argument to not widen it because induced demand repeating the same crap. I will beat this horse again and say Iím willing to side with the opposition on this given the fact I was for the tunnel option to reduce the footprint.

https://www.kut.org/transportation/2021-09-24/expanded-i-35-could-induce-demand-and-make-pollution-worse-transportation-experts-say

I think they've got to tunnel it.  It's a hundred year decision, do it right.  This isn't Waco or Lubbock, it's through some of the highest priced real estate in Texas.

I think the cost and time it would take to do what would make it nearly impossible to tunnel. I think the best solution is focus on making 130 free and an ďI-x35Ē route.

If they re-construct (or even remove) some exits from the existing 35, I think that could help. Also maybe even adding a lane to the upper deck could be done.

But it seems that a complete tear down or expansion isnít going to get done.
Itís not impossible to do it. Itís the fact we as a country are unable to build great things mentality is what stops it. It can and should be built. The it costs too much and takes too long argument is malarkey.

Costs and time is a significant barrier (here in the US). Believe me, I know itís possibleÖ.I just got back from a vacation in Europe a few months ago and tunnels are numerous and easily built there. Someone pointed out in another thread that the costs to build tunnels here is astronomical compared to Europe.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: DenverBrian on October 20, 2021, 07:46:29 PM
Article about the proposal in downtown. The expected irrational argument to not widen it because induced demand repeating the same crap. I will beat this horse again and say Iím willing to side with the opposition on this given the fact I was for the tunnel option to reduce the footprint.

https://www.kut.org/transportation/2021-09-24/expanded-i-35-could-induce-demand-and-make-pollution-worse-transportation-experts-say

I think they've got to tunnel it.  It's a hundred year decision, do it right.  This isn't Waco or Lubbock, it's through some of the highest priced real estate in Texas.

I think the cost and time it would take to do what would make it nearly impossible to tunnel. I think the best solution is focus on making 130 free and an ďI-x35Ē route.

If they re-construct (or even remove) some exits from the existing 35, I think that could help. Also maybe even adding a lane to the upper deck could be done.

But it seems that a complete tear down or expansion isnít going to get done.
Agreed. Make 130 I-835 or some such, or actually sign it as I-35 and re-sign the route through Austin as I-135 or some such. Require all through trucks to use the loop. Solves 75% of the problem for 0% of the cost.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on October 21, 2021, 12:12:30 AM
Article about the proposal in downtown. The expected irrational argument to not widen it because induced demand repeating the same crap. I will beat this horse again and say Iím willing to side with the opposition on this given the fact I was for the tunnel option to reduce the footprint.

https://www.kut.org/transportation/2021-09-24/expanded-i-35-could-induce-demand-and-make-pollution-worse-transportation-experts-say

I think they've got to tunnel it.  It's a hundred year decision, do it right.  This isn't Waco or Lubbock, it's through some of the highest priced real estate in Texas.

I think the cost and time it would take to do what would make it nearly impossible to tunnel. I think the best solution is focus on making 130 free and an ďI-x35Ē route.

If they re-construct (or even remove) some exits from the existing 35, I think that could help. Also maybe even adding a lane to the upper deck could be done.

But it seems that a complete tear down or expansion isnít going to get done.
Itís not impossible to do it. Itís the fact we as a country are unable to build great things mentality is what stops it. It can and should be built. The it costs too much and takes too long argument is malarkey.

Costs and time is a significant barrier (here in the US). Believe me, I know itís possibleÖ.I just got back from a vacation in Europe a few months ago and tunnels are numerous and easily built there. Someone pointed out in another thread that the costs to build tunnels here is astronomical compared to Europe.
My issue is that we just accept it and move on with not improving our infrastructure while other countries find a way to do it.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Ryctor2018 on October 23, 2021, 02:38:44 PM
Article about the proposal in downtown. The expected irrational argument to not widen it because induced demand repeating the same crap. I will beat this horse again and say Iím willing to side with the opposition on this given the fact I was for the tunnel option to reduce the footprint.

https://www.kut.org/transportation/2021-09-24/expanded-i-35-could-induce-demand-and-make-pollution-worse-transportation-experts-say

I think they've got to tunnel it.  It's a hundred year decision, do it right.  This isn't Waco or Lubbock, it's through some of the highest priced real estate in Texas.

I think the cost and time it would take to do what would make it nearly impossible to tunnel. I think the best solution is focus on making 130 free and an ďI-x35Ē route.

If they re-construct (or even remove) some exits from the existing 35, I think that could help. Also maybe even adding a lane to the upper deck could be done.

But it seems that a complete tear down or expansion isnít going to get done.
Agreed. Make 130 I-835 or some such, or actually sign it as I-35 and re-sign the route through Austin as I-135 or some such. Require all through trucks to use the loop. Solves 75% of the problem for 0% of the cost.

Is TX-130 Interstate standard, or compatible? If not, then it's cost millions to upgrade it. The same for tying back to I-35 north of Austin near Georgetown, TX. Plus, making this switch would definitely involve the Tex legislature and the Feds since I-35 is so important to the nations infrastructure. Not against this move, just pointing out that it would probably more 0.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: sprjus4 on October 23, 2021, 03:02:48 PM
^ SH-130 is fully interstate standard. Itís not a substandard facility, especially given it holds a higher speed limit than I-35.

A more realistic (but still not) bet would be to eliminate the tolls on the TxDOT owned portion of SH-45 (south) and SH-130 (the 80 mph segment), and widen the entire facility to a minimum of 6 lanes. Mandate through trucks use that route.

The southern 85 mph portion thatís privately owned would be harder, IMO, to see tolls go since itís privately owned. But it still could help, if it went through too. I-10 would need a minimum of 6 lanes before it did, or it would overload.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Thegeet on October 23, 2021, 06:36:22 PM
^ SH-130 is fully interstate standard. Itís not a substandard facility, especially given it holds a higher speed limit than I-35.

A more realistic (but still not) bet would be to eliminate the tolls on the TxDOT owned portion of SH-45 (south) and SH-130 (the 80 mph segment), and widen the entire facility to a minimum of 6 lanes. Mandate through trucks use that route.

The southern 85 mph portion thatís privately owned would be harder, IMO, to see tolls go since itís privately owned. But it still could help, if it went through too. I-10 would need a minimum of 6 lanes before it did, or it would overload.
I think itís safe to say SH 130 is higher than interstate standard.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: thisdj78 on October 23, 2021, 08:49:13 PM
^ SH-130 is fully interstate standard. Itís not a substandard facility, especially given it holds a higher speed limit than I-35.

A more realistic (but still not) bet would be to eliminate the tolls on the TxDOT owned portion of SH-45 (south) and SH-130 (the 80 mph segment), and widen the entire facility to a minimum of 6 lanes. Mandate through trucks use that route.

The southern 85 mph portion thatís privately owned would be harder, IMO, to see tolls go since itís privately owned. But it still could help, if it went through too. I-10 would need a minimum of 6 lanes before it did, or it would overload.
I think itís safe to say SH 130 is higher than interstate standard.

Yep, 130 could be made I-X35 tomorrow without any changes needed but the signage.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: cbalducc on October 24, 2021, 08:10:02 PM
Wasnít I-35 through Austin a double decker at one point?
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: MaxConcrete on October 24, 2021, 08:24:53 PM
Wasnít I-35 through Austin a double decker at one point?
It still has the upper deck north of downtown. All options still under study for the rebuild will remove the upper deck and place all lanes below grade.

The option for a double deck tunnel has been eliminated, mainly due to extremely high cost and also due to difficult constructability and less access for emergencies.

The remaining two options under study both require right-of-way, which is contributing to controversy.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: thisdj78 on October 25, 2021, 12:39:05 PM
I wonder that the feasibility would be for them to add a lane to the upper decks similar to how they added lanes to the 130 toll bridges when they expended to 6 lanes? And also eliminating exit/entry ramps in multiple spots?

Really there only needs to be exits for Airport, MLK and Cesar Chavez. The others are unnecessary and contribute to the congestion downtown.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Great Lakes Roads on October 25, 2021, 03:49:23 PM

Here's a video of the I-35 in Austin by City Beautiful.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: longhorn on October 26, 2021, 09:21:24 AM

Here's a video of the I-35 in Austin by City Beautiful.

That was a waste of 8 minutes. The powers that be want I-35 expanded, it will happen. And I will add 130 to that expansion list too.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: ski-man on October 26, 2021, 02:20:02 PM

Here's a video of the I-35 in Austin by City Beautiful.
Still cannot believe the tree lined boulevard is still in there. Talk about a cluster F***, even if 130 becomes 35 with no tolls. It is not like all the traffic on 35 currently is just passing through. It would make it tough just getting into downtown/Lady Bird Lake from the north or to t.u. from the South.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: triplemultiplex on October 26, 2021, 03:11:36 PM
In a world where a 10 lane I-35 is tunneled beneath it, that parkway option looks great!
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: kernals12 on October 26, 2021, 03:57:06 PM

Here's a video of the I-35 in Austin by City Beautiful.
Still cannot believe the tree lined boulevard is still in there. Talk about a cluster F***, even if 130 becomes 35 with no tolls. It is not like all the traffic on 35 currently is just passing through. It would make it tough just getting into downtown/Lady Bird Lake from the north or to t.u. from the South.

By turning i-35 into a Boulevard, driving will become so difficult that you'll just walk or bike downtown.

I am very smart
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on October 26, 2021, 04:27:42 PM
In a world where a 10 lane I-35 is tunneled beneath it, that parkway option looks great!
Well welcome to a world where they proposed that but found itís too expensive so they scrapped it while other countries find a way to build it. Youíre living in it.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: longhorn on October 27, 2021, 09:59:54 AM
Read a comment on Reddit about this same topic and the person brought up the point 183 from Lakeline to I-35 and 290/71 from I-35 to Mopac used to be Boulevards. How did that work out? I remember both being boulevards with lights, do not think we want to go back to there with today's traffic counts. I think these people must not have cars that come with these brilliant ideas.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on October 27, 2021, 10:40:14 AM
Read a comment on Reddit about this same topic and the person brought up the point 183 from Lakeline to I-35 and 290/71 from I-35 to Mopac used to be Boulevards. How did that work out? I remember both being boulevards with lights, do not think we want to go back to there with today's traffic counts. I think these people must not have cars that come with these brilliant ideas.
I didnít realize how intolerant Reddit was as I just joined a month ago. Lots of great content there but Iím still weeding out the good threads from the bad ones. Infrastructure Porn is a great sub if you donít read the comments. Post a picture of a highway and youíll immediately get comments about how it would better if it were rail or why Kernals(the poster here who they are obsessed with) would love it if he is wasnít the one who posted it. Itís comical.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: thisdj78 on October 27, 2021, 12:49:04 PM
Read a comment on Reddit about this same topic and the person brought up the point 183 from Lakeline to I-35 and 290/71 from I-35 to Mopac used to be Boulevards. How did that work out? I remember both being boulevards with lights, do not think we want to go back to there with today's traffic counts. I think these people must not have cars that come with these brilliant ideas.

I was in college nearby when those roads were still surface streets in the 90s, so I remember it vividly. The Austin area was also half the population it is now.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: ski-man on October 27, 2021, 03:02:33 PM

Here's a video of the I-35 in Austin by City Beautiful.
Still cannot believe the tree lined boulevard is still in there. Talk about a cluster F***, even if 130 becomes 35 with no tolls. It is not like all the traffic on 35 currently is just passing through. It would make it tough just getting into downtown/Lady Bird Lake from the north or to t.u. from the South.

By turning i-35 into a Boulevard, driving will become so difficult that you'll just walk or bike downtown.

I am very smart

Good one....... :-D
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on January 14, 2022, 12:17:12 PM
Hereís an update that TxDOT provided for new ďimprovementsĒ

Removal of upper decks
Cap/stitch accommodations
Reduced speed limits
Lance Armstrong Bikeway crossing
Enhanced bike/pedestrian connections at Lady Bird Lake
Relocation of managed lane ramps in the vicinity of Airport Blvd. to reduce impacts on surrounding properties and improve operations
Expanded opportunity for inclusion of aesthetic treatments, community art, and placemaking

Yet another example of a project that would be widely successful if we could do what ever other modern country does and build tunnels but nooooooo thatís to extreme here. Blah blah

https://cbsaustin.com/news/local/txdot-reveals-updated-i-35-expansion-plans-but-congestion-still-a-concern?fbclid=IwAR1qMYCEa9Vj5eFNOK9iM9CKEtt3_BbBmCOc90AzXTIgUx8Q-xRgIjOT4Qg
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: DenverBrian on January 14, 2022, 02:16:45 PM
A bikeway named for Lance Armstrong?!? Seriously?
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on January 14, 2022, 02:36:01 PM
A bikeway named for Lance Armstrong?!? Seriously?
More interesting than that thereís apparently a guy whose quote in this article is stating that an act grade Boulevard would move traffic faster through downtown then a fully controlled access facility would.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Echostatic on January 14, 2022, 02:50:37 PM
Quote
Greenfield has pushed to stop the expansion of I-35 and get rid of the interstate that runs through the city altogether. He believes creating a boulevard through Austin will get more cars through faster than the interstate does now.

Sure, bud.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on January 14, 2022, 02:55:07 PM
Quote
Greenfield has pushed to stop the expansion of I-35 and get rid of the interstate that runs through the city altogether. He believes creating a boulevard through Austin will get more cars through faster than the interstate does now.

Sure, bud.
I mean pushing to stop the expansion is somewhat understandable and I say that as someone that generally supports an expansion of the road. Suggesting to remove it and then convert it to a Boulevard claiming that traffic will move faster. How do you even take that seriously?
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: texaskdog on January 14, 2022, 03:26:58 PM
Quote
Greenfield has pushed to stop the expansion of I-35 and get rid of the interstate that runs through the city altogether. He believes creating a boulevard through Austin will get more cars through faster than the interstate does now.

Sure, bud.
I mean pushing to stop the expansion is somewhat understandable and I say that as someone that generally supports an expansion of the road. Suggesting to remove it and then convert it to a Boulevard claiming that traffic will move faster. How do you even take that seriously?

Why not extend the upper deck with NO entrance ramps?  You can get off but can't get on. Therefore it would only serve to funnel cars through town. 
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Echostatic on January 14, 2022, 03:48:56 PM
I mean, that's basically the current proposal. They'll be adding two lanes in the center with limited access to downtown and only a select few exits and entrances in the city as a whole. The current upper decks are an enormous eyesore and only carry two lanes each way themselves.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on January 14, 2022, 03:52:59 PM
Quote
Greenfield has pushed to stop the expansion of I-35 and get rid of the interstate that runs through the city altogether. He believes creating a boulevard through Austin will get more cars through faster than the interstate does now.

Sure, bud.
I mean pushing to stop the expansion is somewhat understandable and I say that as someone that generally supports an expansion of the road. Suggesting to remove it and then convert it to a Boulevard claiming that traffic will move faster. How do you even take that seriously?

Why not extend the upper deck with NO entrance ramps?  You can get off but can't get on. Therefore it would only serve to funnel cars through town.
I long wondered why we donít ever see something like this proposed for major cities that are so sprawled out like DFW a bypass would be too long and wouldnít save time. Like build express lanes through Dallas on I-35E that have extremely limited on ramps maybe in downtown but have an abundance of off ramps. Of course such a road would have to be elevated but there doesnít seem to be too much uproar against elevated viaducts in the DFW area.

In the new I-35 central proposal TxDOT eliminated the upper decks and made no mention of more lanes at grade level to substitute for the loss. So it seems to me the new proposal is less lanes, lower speed limits, and instead of having a one way frontage road system on each side of the freeway they moved the frontage road to only one side and it will be two way. Unless I missed something, weíre going to spend billions to do that and likely wonít improve traffic that much?

If thatís all they propose, why not just use that money to buy out SH-130 and make it free? Iím sure that some people would use it. Kick the can down the road regarding I-35 in central Austin.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on January 14, 2022, 03:54:16 PM
I mean, that's basically the current proposal. They'll be adding two lanes in the center with limited access to downtown and only a select few exits and entrances in the city as a whole. The current upper decks are an enormous eyesore and only carry two lanes each way themselves.
I thought the center four lanes were proposed anyways along with keeping the upper deck?
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Echostatic on January 14, 2022, 04:11:19 PM
The upper deck is not staying in any proposal - there isn't enough room to widen the existing below-grade roadway from 2x2 with the support columns of the upper deck. Any reconstructed freeway through that portion of Central Austin will be solely at-grade or below-grade. This means there will be a minimum of 6 lanes each direction - 4 mainlanes and 2 controlled access lanes, which is why there will be significant land acquisition needed in the area. No mainlanes will be lost on any portion of I-35 as part of reconstruction, lanes will only be added.

The portion of I-35 being discussed will look something like this in any design considered currently.
(https://i.imgur.com/GvtJW0j.png)

The very narrowest portion, between a cemetery and the UT Austin campus, will briefly shift all frontage road traffic to the Northbound side of the freeway. However, 7 lanes of traffic in each direction will be maintained on I-35 and frontage road capacity will not be compromised.
(https://i.imgur.com/IgqJhgz.png)
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on January 14, 2022, 05:04:33 PM
Okay thatís good to know.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: TXtoNJ on January 17, 2022, 10:00:53 AM
All things considered, it's a fairly decent compromise if tunnels are completely off the table. I know some people are opposed to even this, but they're mostly chasing clout in urbanist circles.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Anthony_JK on January 17, 2022, 10:36:38 AM

[...]

The very narrowest portion, between a cemetery and the UT Austin campus, will briefly shift all frontage road traffic to the Northbound side of the freeway. However, 7 lanes of traffic in each direction will be maintained on I-35 and frontage road capacity will not be compromised.
(https://i.imgur.com/IgqJhgz.png)

Ooooh, I like this proposal.

If they would cap this section completely and do a linear park for the covered section, it would be perfect.

Anything better than downgrading to a boulevard.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Bobby5280 on January 17, 2022, 12:28:20 PM
I think the concept looks pretty good. 4-5 freeway main lanes and 2 express lanes in each direction might work reasonably well. Some of that depends on how well traffic can enter or leave the superhighway. I like that the express lanes are 2 lanes in both directions, as opposed to some of these silly single lane configurations popping up in various cities around the state. All you need is one slow poke in a single express lane to ruin the purpose of using it.

It would be nice if they could cap over parts of the highway to improve access for pedestrians and bicyclists. I'm guessing the blue lines on the map fringing the frontage roads and other connecting surface streets are sidewalks.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on January 17, 2022, 01:01:19 PM
All things considered, it's a fairly decent compromise if tunnels are completely off the table. I know some people are opposed to even this, but they're mostly chasing clout in urbanist circles.
Yeah this is a better proposal than the last ones I saw. I could live with this.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on January 17, 2022, 01:04:05 PM
I like that the express lanes are 2 lanes in both directions, as opposed to some of these silly single lane configurations popping up in various cities around the state. All you need is one slow poke in a single express lane to ruin the purpose of using it.
CDOT just did this same stupid fucking setup on I-25 on a large section between south Denver and Colorado Springs. I just don't get it. Either just add a damn lane to highway or make it two express lanes each way. Such a waste. But they didn't use concrete dividers like Texas has been, just bollards which I'm not sure if reinforced or not.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Echostatic on January 25, 2022, 10:44:54 PM
Alternative 3, which is the option that the City of Austin is angling for and TXDOT has moved forward, has received substantial changes as part of local workshops. Alternative 2 has received some, but fewer changes; I won't post those here. The new Alternative 3 Modified is posted below in its entirety.
(https://i.imgur.com/Ok4EVOM.png)
(https://i.imgur.com/rPbnkqG.png)
(https://i.imgur.com/tnFNPOl.png)
(https://i.imgur.com/Gdb3W24.png)
(https://i.imgur.com/fEvdtrW.png)
(https://i.imgur.com/wu8ywBO.png)
(https://i.imgur.com/X1mOAUf.png)
(https://i.imgur.com/FL1ygpv.png)

If built as proposed, this will be one of the most impressive highways in the nation.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: MaxConcrete on January 26, 2022, 12:35:55 AM
As Echostatic mentioned, changes to Alternative 2 are minimal and changes to Alternative 3 are substantial. I'm inclined to think Alt 3 will be favored, since it provides more deck opportunities and revives the original East Avenue through downtown with the frontage roads together like a street. Unfortunately the new Alt 3 has more downsizing than Alt 2.

Alternate 2. Minimal changes.
Northbound bypass lanes minimized or eliminated in downtown area

Alternate 3.  Major changes. This option has reduced ROW right of way requirement. Comments go from north to south.
Elevated structures for managed lanes are eliminated and brought to ground level north of 38th. Managed lanes are reduced from 4 to 2 lanes north of Airport blvd.
Two Flyovers for HOV access eliminated at 41st street
MLK: SB frontage road shifted to the east side of corridor, right next to NB frontage road in urban street configuration.
15th street: frontage roads (both directions together) cross over to the west side of corridor
Bypass lanes eliminated through downtown, generally 1-2 less lanes each direction
South of Riverside: Elevated structures for managed lanes eliminated. Bypass lanes eliminated
Woodland Avenue bridge over IH 35 eliminated
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Bobby5280 on January 26, 2022, 01:02:54 AM
Yeah, I'm not a fan at all of those single express lanes in Alt 3. As much as Austin and points North are growing I think it's very short-sighted to downsize managed lanes and other elements North of Airport Road.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Echostatic on January 26, 2022, 10:44:19 AM
I'm fine with the downsizing north of Airport if it gets this thing built. Even if they didn't add a single lane on this stretch, the traffic would be massively improved by just road design alone.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on March 17, 2022, 09:57:22 AM
Apparently according to this article TxDOT didnít realize a building existed right next to the central part of this project because they only use Bing and Google:
Quote
Thatís because the transportation agency officials said they rely on Travis County Appraisal District maps, Google images and Bing. When reviewing those maps, Aria Grand did not exist. It was just a vacant plot of land. The 70-unit housing complex opened in early 2020

https://www.kxan.com/news/local/austin/concerns-surrounding-future-of-buildings-lining-i-35-as-txdot-moves-forward-with-expansion-plans/

Is this really a thing? A multi billion project is to be built and when planning they donít even send surveyors in person or drones to to see whatís nearby?
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: DenverBrian on March 17, 2022, 01:58:08 PM
Apparently according to this article TxDOT didnít realize a building existed right next to the central part of this project because they only use Bing and Google:
Quote
Thatís because the transportation agency officials said they rely on Travis County Appraisal District maps, Google images and Bing. When reviewing those maps, Aria Grand did not exist. It was just a vacant plot of land. The 70-unit housing complex opened in early 2020

https://www.kxan.com/news/local/austin/concerns-surrounding-future-of-buildings-lining-i-35-as-txdot-moves-forward-with-expansion-plans/

Is this really a thing? A multi billion project is to be built and when planning they donít even send surveyors in person or drones to to see whatís nearby?
In the 2000s, there was a brand new set of townhomes built near I-25 in Denver between Broadway and University. I actually considered one of these to buy.

The T-Rex project demolished these townhomes about three years after they were built.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: bwana39 on March 21, 2022, 12:52:09 AM
Apparently according to this article TxDOT didnít realize a building existed right next to the central part of this project because they only use Bing and Google:
Quote
Thatís because the transportation agency officials said they rely on Travis County Appraisal District maps, Google images and Bing. When reviewing those maps, Aria Grand did not exist. It was just a vacant plot of land. The 70-unit housing complex opened in early 2020

https://www.kxan.com/news/local/austin/concerns-surrounding-future-of-buildings-lining-i-35-as-txdot-moves-forward-with-expansion-plans/

Is this really a thing? A multi billion project is to be built and when planning they donít even send surveyors in person or drones to to see whatís nearby?
In the 2000s, there was a brand new set of townhomes built near I-25 in Denver between Broadway and University. I actually considered one of these to buy.

The T-Rex project demolished these townhomes about three years after they were built.

Sometimes, developers build solely to be eventually bought out.....https://www.google.com/maps/place/Renaissance+At+Allendale/@32.5006408,-93.7612936,18.25z/data=!4m13!1m7!3m6!1s0x86312a8d1798e91f:0x2ebd2c1687a49cdd!2sShreveport,+LA!3b1!8m2!3d32.5251516!4d-93.7501789!3m4!1s0x8636cd2943a742a1:0x261b1b7647d1e013!8m2!3d32.5011414!4d-93.7603087
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: J N Winkler on April 19, 2022, 04:31:36 PM
TxDOT has advertised what appears to be the south section (SH 71 south to SH 45 SE) for bid opening this May, as CCSJ 0015-13-077 in Travis County.  It is a large plans set, with over 4000 sheets packed into seven downloadable files that aggregate to 3.43 GB.  In areas where the managed lanes are not at the same level as the general-purpose lanes, they are on a viaduct running down the center, similar to the Harbor Transitway along the Harbor Freeway (I-110) just north of SR 91 in south Los Angeles.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: kernals12 on April 19, 2022, 04:48:20 PM
TxDOT has advertised what appears to be the south section (SH 71 south to SH 45 SE) for bid opening this May, as CCSJ 0015-13-077 in Travis County.  It is a large plans set, with over 4000 sheets packed into seven downloadable files that aggregate to 3.43 GB.  In areas where the managed lanes are not at the same level as the general-purpose lanes, they are on a viaduct running down the center, similar to the Harbor Transitway along the Harbor Freeway (I-110) just north of SR 91 in south Los Angeles.

Same thing for the planned i-35 widening (heightening?) In San Antonio
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: sprjus4 on April 19, 2022, 05:07:29 PM
TxDOT has advertised what appears to be the south section (SH 71 south to SH 45 SE) for bid opening this May, as CCSJ 0015-13-077 in Travis County.  It is a large plans set, with over 4000 sheets packed into seven downloadable files that aggregate to 3.43 GB.  In areas where the managed lanes are not at the same level as the general-purpose lanes, they are on a viaduct running down the center, similar to the Harbor Transitway along the Harbor Freeway (I-110) just north of SR 91 in south Los Angeles.

Same thing for the planned i-35 widening (heightening?) In San Antonio
Not exactlyÖ I believe the plans call for elevated lanes on two separate viaducts over the outside portion of the roadway, not the center.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: MaxConcrete on May 05, 2022, 06:59:25 PM
http://www.dot.state.tx.us/insdtdot/orgchart/cmd/cserve/bidtab/05053202.htm (http://www.dot.state.tx.us/insdtdot/orgchart/cmd/cserve/bidtab/05053202.htm)
Bids were opened today for the work on the south side of Austin between SH71/US 290 and SH 45.

The low bid is $144 million (35.5%) above the estimate. Given the complexity of this project, with the long elevated managed lanes and constricted work zone, I was expecting a big overrun.
The low bid on a job on Loop 375 in El Paso was 34.4% over estimate. http://www.dot.state.tx.us/insdtdot/orgchart/cmd/cserve/bidtab/05043002.htm (http://www.dot.state.tx.us/insdtdot/orgchart/cmd/cserve/bidtab/05043002.htm)
I'm inclined to think that TxDOT will take the low bid for IH-35 in Austin and press forward, since delaying the project for a rebid will likely result in an even higher price due to inflation. For El Paso, I think it is possible they may reduce scope and rebid.

County:   TRAVIS   Let Date:   05/05/22
Type:   WIDEN ROAD - ADD LANES   Seq No:   3202
Time:   1504 WORKING DAYS   Project ID:   F 2022(340)
Highway:   IH 35   Contract #:   05223202
Length:   22.532   CCSJ:   0015-13-077
Limits:   
From:   US 290W/SH 71   Check:   $100,000
To:   SH 45 SE   Misc Cost:   
Estimate   $404,029,774.77   % Over/Under   Company
Bidder 1   $547,603,209.85   +35.54%   FLUOR HEAVY CIVIL, LLC
Bidder 2   $569,278,526.69   +40.90%   WEBBER, LLC
Bidder 3   $582,684,732.35   +44.22%   PULICE CONSTRUCTION, INC.
Bidder 4   $617,263,345.25   +52.78%   ARCHER WESTERN CONSTRUCTION, LLC
SUNDT CONSTRUCTION, INC.
Bidder 5   $626,751,415.84   +55.13%   WILLIAMS BROTHERS CONSTRUCTION CO., INC.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Plutonic Panda on May 05, 2022, 07:53:15 PM
^^^^ at this point TxDOT may as well just plan for these overruns in their budget.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: MaxConcrete on May 26, 2022, 11:35:56 PM
TxDOT is soliciting for consultants for 5 miles of new drainage tunnels for the central project. See pages 22 and 23.

https://ftp.txdot.gov/pub/txdot/ppd/meetings/051922/presentation.pdf (https://ftp.txdot.gov/pub/txdot/ppd/meetings/051922/presentation.pdf)

Target start of construction is March 2024. No cost estimate is provided but this won't be cheap.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: kernals12 on May 28, 2022, 12:47:59 AM
Why can't TxDOT open up the express lanes to single occupancy vehicles during non-peak hours?
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: bwana39 on June 06, 2022, 10:45:37 AM
Why can't TxDOT open up the express lanes to single occupancy vehicles during non-peak hours?

In DFW, the TOLL HO lanes are open for a price at any time.  Getting the HO discount (to as little as free) is  a bigger problem. 
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Henry on June 06, 2022, 12:52:54 PM
Apparently according to this article TxDOT didnít realize a building existed right next to the central part of this project because they only use Bing and Google:
Quote
Thatís because the transportation agency officials said they rely on Travis County Appraisal District maps, Google images and Bing. When reviewing those maps, Aria Grand did not exist. It was just a vacant plot of land. The 70-unit housing complex opened in early 2020

https://www.kxan.com/news/local/austin/concerns-surrounding-future-of-buildings-lining-i-35-as-txdot-moves-forward-with-expansion-plans/

Is this really a thing? A multi billion project is to be built and when planning they donít even send surveyors in person or drones to to see whatís nearby?
In the 2000s, there was a brand new set of townhomes built near I-25 in Denver between Broadway and University. I actually considered one of these to buy.

The T-Rex project demolished these townhomes about three years after they were built.

Sometimes, developers build solely to be eventually bought out.....https://www.google.com/maps/place/Renaissance+At+Allendale/@32.5006408,-93.7612936,18.25z/data=!4m13!1m7!3m6!1s0x86312a8d1798e91f:0x2ebd2c1687a49cdd!2sShreveport,+LA!3b1!8m2!3d32.5251516!4d-93.7501789!3m4!1s0x8636cd2943a742a1:0x261b1b7647d1e013!8m2!3d32.5011414!4d-93.7603087

It makes absolutely no sense to build something and then tear it down within a few years. I always thought that those buildings would mean a highway project has been permanently shelved, like I-49 in Allendale as depicted in the link above, although they're still trying to get that project started. I also have mixed feelings on the I-35 plans in Austin, because there is practically no space to expand traditionally, so an elevated level would have to be built (outside of what's already there). Once again, I think building up and tearing down in a short amount of time is a waste of taxpayers' money.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Bobby5280 on June 06, 2022, 05:23:15 PM
Developers pull that crap all the time, build a housing development in a location directly in the path of where a future freeway or toll road is planned.

In Oklahoma City it's really easy to see the dopey path the modest extension of the Kilpatrick Turnpike had to take to dodge around housing properties that were allowed to build in the originally proposed path. In this case the turnpike went around the housing developments.

Over on the East side of Dallas next to I-30 several apartment complexes were built on the path of where the Bush Turnpike will be extended South. Most, if not all, of those apartment buildings will have to be cleared for the turnpike extension and expanded interchange with I-30.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: thisdj78 on June 06, 2022, 06:25:19 PM

Over on the East side of Dallas next to I-30 several apartment complexes were built on the path of where the Bush Turnpike will be extended South. Most, if not all, of those apartment buildings will have to be cleared for the turnpike extension and expanded interchange with I-30.

I believe there were several apartment complexes on the north side of I-30 that had to be torn down for the current intersection. Looks like theyíve already started tearing down some properties south of I-30 over the last several years in prep for the extensionÖ.thereís a few fields where apartments used to be with abandoned parking lots still remaining:

https://goo.gl/maps/djufcgyAp7ksHPeY7

EDIT: Nevermind, I just remembered that a Tornado did some of the work for them several years ago:

https://www.weather.gov/images/fwd/dec26outbreak/img/tracks/sgr_tor.png
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Stephane Dumas on June 06, 2022, 06:40:11 PM

Over on the East side of Dallas next to I-30 several apartment complexes were built on the path of where the Bush Turnpike will be extended South. Most, if not all, of those apartment buildings will have to be cleared for the turnpike extension and expanded interchange with I-30.

I believe there were several apartment complexes on the north side of I-30 that had to be torn down for the current intersection. Looks like theyíve already started tearing down some properties south of I-30 over the last several years in prep for the extensionÖ.thereís a few fields where apartments used to be with abandoned parking lots still remaining:

https://goo.gl/maps/djufcgyAp7ksHPeY7

Still on I-30 a little bit further east, GSV show some works on ones of the Ray Hubbard Lake bridges. https://goo.gl/maps/EWHDL5gb872mijBs5  Are they already beginned to build the spans for the services roads so I-30 will have continuous service roads between TX-190 and Rockwall?
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: kernals12 on June 06, 2022, 10:34:58 PM
Developers pull that crap all the time, build a housing development in a location directly in the path of where a future freeway or toll road is planned.

In Oklahoma City it's really easy to see the dopey path the modest extension of the Kilpatrick Turnpike had to take to dodge around housing properties that were allowed to build in the originally proposed path. In this case the turnpike went around the housing developments.

Over on the East side of Dallas next to I-30 several apartment complexes were built on the path of where the Bush Turnpike will be extended South. Most, if not all, of those apartment buildings will have to be cleared for the turnpike extension and expanded interchange with I-30.

This was the plot of L.A. Noire
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: bwana39 on June 06, 2022, 10:56:55 PM

Over on the East side of Dallas next to I-30 several apartment complexes were built on the path of where the Bush Turnpike will be extended South. Most, if not all, of those apartment buildings will have to be cleared for the turnpike extension and expanded interchange with I-30.

I believe there were several apartment complexes on the north side of I-30 that had to be torn down for the current intersection. Looks like theyíve already started tearing down some properties south of I-30 over the last several years in prep for the extensionÖ.thereís a few fields where apartments used to be with abandoned parking lots still remaining:

https://goo.gl/maps/djufcgyAp7ksHPeY7

Still on I-30 a little bit further east, GSV show some works on ones of the Ray Hubbard Lake bridges. https://goo.gl/maps/EWHDL5gb872mijBs5  Are they already beginned to build the spans for the services roads so I-30 will have continuous service roads between TX-190 and Rockwall?

Initially from Bass Pro Drive to the Rockwall county line. (Dalrock Road). As I understand it, the Rockwall county portion is to be bid later this year.

https://ftp.txdot.gov/pub/txdot-info/dal/i30-expansion-fact-sheet.pdf
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: bwana39 on June 06, 2022, 11:07:50 PM

Over on the East side of Dallas next to I-30 several apartment complexes were built on the path of where the Bush Turnpike will be extended South. Most, if not all, of those apartment buildings will have to be cleared for the turnpike extension and expanded interchange with I-30.

I believe there were several apartment complexes on the north side of I-30 that had to be torn down for the current intersection. Looks like theyíve already started tearing down some properties south of I-30 over the last several years in prep for the extensionÖ.thereís a few fields where apartments used to be with abandoned parking lots still remaining:

https://goo.gl/maps/djufcgyAp7ksHPeY7

EDIT: Nevermind, I just remembered that a Tornado did some of the work for them several years ago:

https://www.weather.gov/images/fwd/dec26outbreak/img/tracks/sgr_tor.png

The Savings and Loan Scandal was based on the initial building on the then unremarkable space directly south of I-30 and where PGBT ends now. Back in the early / mid eighties, this area was covered by moderately high-end townhomes. Some were unfinished. Some were completed before the meltdown. Some others were purchased and finished as apartments. In the past decade or so, they have come in and filled it out in apartments.

There are some gaps where the tornado came through. The thought is that any extension of PGBT will go back toward Beltline as opposed ot going straight.
Title: Re: Austin: IH 35 rebuild
Post by: Bobby5280 on June 07, 2022, 01:54:50 PM
All of the plans I've seen for the PGBT extension keep showing it extending directly south of the current PGBT end at I-30. I think the act of shifting the PGBT alignment farther West, closer to Beltline Road, would be much more disruptive. The neighborhoods by I-30 are much thicker with homes there. Plus the exits for Lyons Road, Rosehill Road and Beltline leave no room to squeeze in ramps for a "Y" interchange.

One thing is certain: the more time the NTTA wastes the harder it will be to build any extension of the PGBT South of I-30. That undeveloped green space next to Lake Ray Hubbard is going to eventually fill in with new homes and apartment buildings.