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Chad Swiatecki is a 20-year journalist who relocated to Austin from his home state of Michigan in 2008. He most enjoys covering the intersection of arts, business and local/state politics. He has written for Rolling Stone, Spin, New York Daily News, Texas Monthly, Austin American-Statesman and many other regional and national outlets.
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Corridor office secures additional $70M for road construction projects
The city has secured an additional $70 million to put toward a series of transportation construction projects voters approved in 2016 as part of a $720 million bond package.
A recent memo from the Corridor Program Office gave a comprehensive update on progress for the Corridor Construction Program, which was created to make safety and other improvements to nine major roadways throughout the city. The 2016 bond provided $472 million to fund the projects along those corridors, with later Council action expanding the scope and funding of the program to $1.4 billion.
As the memo spells out, following Council direction, the CPO leveraged funds from the 2016 funding package to generate $70 million more using grants and assorted partnerships, with additional funding possible in the future.
The nine corridors targeted by the program are Airport Boulevard, Burnet Road, North Lamar Boulevard, East Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, Guadalupe Street, South Lamar Boulevard, Riverside Drive, William Cannon Drive and Slaughter Lane.
The initial 2016 slate of projects is on schedule for completion by the end of 2024. Approximately $200 million in projects will be completed or in progress by the beginning of next year, with 13 projects totaling over $120 million under construction or in procurement by the end of this year.
When completed, the memo touts improvements in traveler safety and quality of life, including a 25 percent reduction in vehicular delay, a 10 to 15 percent mode shift that eliminates 4.3 million vehicle trips annually, and a 15 percent reduction in crashes.
The CPO is also looking beyond the initial group of corridors, with preliminary engineering studies recently completed on South Pleasant Valley Road, Menchaca Road, and West Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. The additional construction work will bring the construction total for all of the affected roads to around $2.5 billion.
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