March 23, 2018
I appreciate all the efforts your office has made to keep the RM620/2222 improvements on track including coordination with the City of Austin. Please extend a big THANK YOU to everyone involved from all of us on the RM620 corridor!
As we discussed in our last meeting about the next steps for RM620, stakeholders for the RM 620 corridor will continue to be impacted by severe traffic congestion despite these improvements. As you know, the level-of-service for major intersections even after the improvements will remain at an “F” including at RM 2222 and at Anderson Mill Road. [ Reference the TxDOT RM620 corridor study: http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/get-involved/aus/rm-620/corridor-study.pdf; Executive summary: http://ftp.dot.state.tx.us/pub/txdot/get-involved/aus/rm-620/executive-summary.pdf) ].
We are eager to get the next round of corridor improvements for RM620 north of the dam moving forward and placed into the CAMPO TIP as quickly as possible These are the so-called “mid-term” improvements of adding a raised median and growing to six lanes from four. These improvements have similar safety and traffic implications as those on RM620 in Lakeway and Bee Caves which are presently in the 2018 proposed TIP for 2019-2022. Therefore, we hope the RM620 north section can follow its sibling to the south expediently for both planning and implementation. Additionally, we would appreciate any progress update you might have on the next steps in planning for these improvements north of the dam including discussions with local entities such as the City of Austin, Cedar Park, Travis and/or Williamson Counties, and any other measures which have been taken to advance the readiness of this project.
A recent cluster of tragic accidents have also caused us to step back and take stock of the pervasive safety issues we have along RM 620 as evidenced by a number of events in recent years that included head on collisions and cross-traffic loss of life. On Tuesday, Bruce and Bobby joined us for a neighborhood discussion around safety on RM620 in Steiner Ranch together with representatives from Rep. Paul Workman’s office, the Travis County Sheriff’s office and Lake Travis Fire and Rescue. We had a productive discussion around the short term measures in plan and some new ideas for incremental improvements in safety.
However, we also discussed that the real step-function improvement in safety on the RM62 corridor will come from the raised median improvements as documented in the corridor study. The concern for safety on this corridor cannot be over-stated given the combination of volume, traffic speed, lack of cross-traffic barriers and heavy / growing local access points as development fills in any remaining holes in land use.
We really appreciate that TxDOT has identified the critical safety and traffic improvement solutions for RM620. We also appreciate that TxDOT has already spearheaded CAMPO funding with Lakeway support for sections south of the dam. Please advise how can we accelerate the funding and implementation of the proposal to the section north of the dam so we can address the critical mobility and safety concerns on our corridor.
Cc: Bruce Byron (TxDOT), Bobby Ramthun (TxDOT), Rep. Paul Workman, Judge Sarah Eckhardt, Commissioner Brigid Shea, Commisioner Gerald Daugherty, Mayor Steve Adler, Councilman Jimmy Flannigan, Mayor Matt Powell.
Chairman, Steiner Ranch Neighborhood Association
Special Advisor, West Austin Chamber of Commerce