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TipSheet: Travis County, 4.3.18

Tuesday, April 3, 2018 by Caleb Pritchard

The Travis County Commissioners Court meets at 9 a.m. Tuesday. In the interest of space, we’ve decided not to post the entire agenda here. The County Clerk’s office hosts a copy at its website.

10. Receive briefing on the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO) 2019–2022 Project Call Project Evaluation and Recommendation Report. (Judge Eckhardt)

Monitor’s Take: As we reported yesterday, CAMPO staff have put forth their recommended Transportation Improvement Program that, once approved by that body’s board, will guide federal and state funds towards regional mobility projects for the next four years. Several projects sponsored by the county made the cut, but expect some consternation to be aired over the organization’s decision to take a pass on all travel demand management requests in favor of a broader study of TDM as a concept.

11. Consider and take appropriate action on the draft of proposed projects for Travis County/Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority (CapMetro) Transit Development Plan for review by the public. (Commissioner Travillion)

Monitor’s Take: The draft transit development plan the Commissioners Court commissioned back in June is apparently ready for review. The draft of the three-year TDP identifies 10 areas across the county where a partnership with Capital Metro could expand transit service. Whether that’s in the form of a conventional bus route or an innovative mobility-on-demand pilot depends on the specific area. We’ll be keeping an eye on the reaction of Commissioner Jeff Travillion, who also sits on the Capital Metro board of directors and is frequently inclined to note that many of his constituents need transit access in order to get to work, school, or their doctors.

12. Receive briefing regarding the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority (CTRMA)/ CapMetro/CAMPO Regional Park and Ride Analysis. (Commissioner Travillion)

Monitor’s Take: Seriously, this agenda is aces for anyone – say, a reporter – whose personal and professional interests involve both the county and local transportation policy. In addition to the aforementioned CAMPO and Capital Metro items, we also get this long-awaited update on the CTRMA’s park-and-ride proposal. A new draft map identifies 11 potential sites for transit-oriented parking lots across the county and then some (two are in Williamson County). The big question, of course, is funding, and that appears to be something that CAMPO will have figured out by July when it is scheduled to begin incorporating the finalized sites into its CAMPO 2045 Plan.

13. Consider and take appropriate action on the following items: a. Receive presentation from CapMetro on Project Connect and the proposed Green Line Commuter Rail project b. Consider and take appropriate action on the economic development opportunities for equitable local investment in Eastern Travis County related to the Green Line Commuter Rail (Commissioner Travillion)

Monitor’s Take: The All-Transportation Edition of the Travis County Commissioners Court rolls on with this Green Line-centric presentation from Capital Metro’s Project Connect team. The proposed Austin-to-Elgin line earned a spot on Project Connect’s recently revealed draft system map despite some pretty poor ridership projections (1,900 trips per weekday by 2025). County staff apparently see the commuter rail option as a potential tool in the toolbox to increase equity in the eastern part of the county and are thus recommending the court authorize the study of funding options to help get the 27-mile line built.

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Key Players & Topics In This Article

Travis County Commissioners Court: The legislative body for Travis County. It includes representatives from the four Travis County Precincts, as well as the County Judge. The County Judge serves as the chair of the Court.

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