According to Mayor Steve Adler, Austin has worse traffic than New York City. He is citing a nationwide measure of traffic density where our city ranked a shameful fourth. The problem has only gotten worse over time: Ten years ago it was listed twenty-fifth.
Along with increased congestion comes increased occurrence of accidents, with intersections being ground zero. The Austin Department of Transportation decided to take decisive action to help our troubled roadways and identified the city’s worst crossroads. Councilmember Ann Kitchen said, “The tragedy of traffic fatalities and injuries on our streets is unacceptable and must be addressed as fast as possible.” Proving they were serious, roadwork kicked off on day one of the 2016 calendar year.
By studying the frequency of bodily injury in accidents around town, they came up with the five worst intersections, which are listed below. The dollar amount represents the projected cost at the start of the project.
This corner ranked worst, and work began remedying that on the first day of the project. Along with a raised median on Manchaca Road, dual left-hand lanes were added on both streets. H-E-B graciously partnered with the TxDOT and City of Austin to plan improvements as many accidents were happening near their driveway. Traffic posts are meant to deter shoppers from cutting across multiple lanes of traffic to enter the store. Another strategy was adding dual left-turn lanes.
A large number of crashes were happening due to driveways near the intersection. The plan called for installing a pedestrian hybrid beacon, high visibility crosswalks, and modifying the library exit. New raised medians were included since left turns and driveway action were both sources of accidents.
Improvements at this intersection aim to lessen north and southbound rear-ends in the right-turn lanes. It is being upgraded in conjunction with the nationwide Vision Zero road safety initiative. It focuses on pedestrian safety along with driver safety. Pedestrian and traffic signals will work together to reduce fatalities. Modified sidewalks and ramps help pedestrians and thereby reassure drivers. Dangerous right turns were targeted as well.
Reducing speeds and helping pedestrians were the primary goals here. Adding another southbound through lane and modifying the turn lane were strategized along with the following directives:
This corner took up the largest portion of Austin drivers’ time in an INRIX ranking. It also has many crashes on the frontage road when vehicles head for Martin Luther King. Goals here were raised crosswalks for high visibility, modified lane assignments, and slowing down speeders. An upgrade to this intersection was completed in October 2016.
Colley & Colley has been helping Austin residents cope with all types of traffic incidents for decades. We have time-tested methods for getting the highest possible compensation for our clients. Contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation to find out what we can do for you. Simply call 1-877-411-2001 or complete the contact form below.