Earlier today, the Austin City Council extended the term of an agreement with Capital Metro, setting the stage for additional pedestrian mobility and accessibility improvements throughout Austin.
The current agreement, which dates back to 2012, allows the agencies to coordinate the construction of sidewalk and pedestrian improvements at bus stops. The agreement was set to expire this month, and with today’s vote, will be extended through November 2023.
Under the original agreement, Capital Metro committed $10 million to fund pedestrian improvement projects at its bus stop locations. The City of Austin's Public Works Department has used these funds to manage the construction of hundreds of pedestrian improvement projects, including building dozens of miles of new sidewalks.
“This partnership has been extremely successful,” said Public Works Director Richard Mendoza following the Council vote. “Our sidewalks team has done a tremendous job delivering these important improvements, and we’re excited to keep the momentum going.”
Since 2012, Public Works has used this funding to improve sidewalk and pedestrian connectivity at more than 800 Capital Metro bus stops around Austin. Improvements have mainly included upgrades to bust stop landing areas and the building of new sidewalk sections. These improvements have helped numerous bus stop locations achieve compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
A few of these projects include:
Manchaca Rd. and Slaughter Ln. (see photos here and here)
N. Lamar Blvd. and Masterson Pass (see photo here)
The approval from Council included that of District 5 Council Member Ann Kitchen, who chairs the Council’s Mobility Committee and is also a member of Capital Metro’s Board of Directors.
"We need to give people more options for how to get around," said Capital Metro Board Member and Austin Council Member Ann Kitchen. "These partnerships help us provide the sidewalk connections that we need, making it easier for people to use our transit system every day."
Prior to today’s City Council vote, the Capital Metro Board voted unanimously to extend this agreement with the City.
“It's important for Capital Metro that everyone has the ability and opportunity to take transit,” said Capital Metro’s Accessibility Program Manager Martin Kareithi. “We're proud to partner with the city to make sure access to our bus stops and stations isn't a barrier to riding the bus.”
About the Austin Public Works Sidewalks and Special Projects Division: The Public Works Department's Sidewalk Program is responsible for installing miles of sidewalks in Austin for transportation and recreational use. The Americans with Disabilities Act is a driving factor in making sure that the right-of-way along Austin's streets are safe and accessible for all.
About Capital Metro: Capital Metro connects people, jobs and communities by providing Central Texans with safe, high-quality and sustainable transportation alternatives. The agency provides 30 million rides annually on its buses, trains, paratransit and vanpool vehicles and serves a population of more than 1.2 million in its 543-square-mile service area. The region’s transportation leader, Capital Metro has invested in transit services like its High-Frequency Network and MetroRapid, which move more people, more frequently. Capital Metro is committed to increasing regional mobility and consistently innovates to bring new service to its riders. The award-winning CapMetro App was among the first mobile ticketing apps to allow riders to purchase tickets and plan trips. Visit capmetro.org for more information.
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301 W. 2nd Street, Austin, TX 78701