Improvements to five dangerous intersections funded in FY16 budget.
As part of the Fiscal Year 2016 budget process, Council Member Ann Kitchen led the charge to fund safety improvements at five of Austin’s dangerous intersections. On day one of the new Fiscal Year, Oct. 1, interim safety improvements were already installed at the Slaughter Lane and Manchaca Road intersection.
“The tragedy of traffic fatalities and injuries on our streets is unacceptable and must be addressed as fast as possible. Just one day into the new budget we have already made changes and improved safety at Slaughter Lane and Manchaca Road,” said Council Member Ann Kitchen. “The City of Austin cares and we are working to quickly make our roads safer.”
The interim improvements involve placing temporary delineator posts, or plastic yellow posts, and yellow striping near the H-E-B exit onto Manchaca Road to direct drivers exiting the driveway to turn southbound onto Manchaca Road. This prevents drivers from cutting across four lanes to travel northbound, which was a conflict point causing safety issues near the intersection. Additionally, the posts prevent northbound drivers from cutting across three lanes to enter the driveway unsafely.
The partnership between the City of Austin, TxDOT and H-E-B was integral to making safety the priority in this area.
“When it comes to our customer’s safety we make it our top priority. As soon as we learned of an opportunity to improve the intersection, we were on board,” said Leslie Sweet, H-E-B Director of Public Affairs. “We’ve been working with the City’s Transportation Department to find a solution that works for our store, and most importantly keeps our customers safe.”
TxDOT staff members worked closely with City staff to quickly approve the interim plan. They will also be important partners in planning for the permanent improvements.
The permanent safety improvements could include a raised median along Manchaca Rd. to restrict driveway access and improve safety. In the absence of raised medians, drivers can make unsafe left turns to and from driveways near the intersection, unfortunately resulting in crashes in some cases. Additionally, dual left‐turn lanes could be added at the intersection on both streets to reduce delays. The permanent improvements are currently going through a contracting process before moving to design, and then construction.
Future updates will be provided as progress proceeds on all five of the dangerous intersections funded through the FY16 budget process.
About the 5 dangerous intersections funded in FY16 budget
The Austin Transportation Department (ATD) identified these five intersections based on the highest priority, collision prone intersections and identified where particular trends exist that can be addressed with engineering countermeasures.
Based on the review of the safety aspects of these locations, ATD has identified engineering improvements that would address safety issues at the top five locations
1. W. Slaughter Lane / Manchaca Road (District 5): $1,500,000 (estimated)
Crashes primarily happen at driveways north and south of the intersection. In the absence of raised medians, drivers can make unsafe left turns to and from these driveways. The project would add a raised median along Manchaca to restrict driveway access and improve safety. Dual left‐turn lanes would be added at the intersection on both streets to reduce delays.
2. Lamar Blvd/Rundberg Lane (District 4): $525,000 (estimated)
Crashes primarily happen at driveways north and south of the intersection. In the absence of raised medians, drivers can make unsafe left turns to and from these driveways. The project would add a raised median along Lamar to restrict driveway access and improve safety.
3. Lamar Blvd/Parmer Lane (District 7): $525,000 (estimated)
Most crashes are northbound and southbound rear‐ends in the channelized right‐turn lanes. The project would modify the right‐turn lanes to force drivers to yield, decrease vehicle speeds, reduce rear‐ends, and improve safety for pedestrians crossing the lanes.
4. US 183 Service Road/Cameron Road (District 1 and 4): $900,000 (estimated)
Crashes occur along Cameron at both frontage roads of US 183. The project would add
another southbound through lane at the north frontage road to extend south of US 183. It would also modify the southbound right‐turn lane to decrease vehicle speeds and improve safety for pedestrians crossing the lane.
5. IH 35 Service Road Southbound/Martin Luther King (District 1): $375,000 (estimated)
Many crashes occur on the southbound frontage road as vehicles cross lanes approaching Martin Luther King. The project would change one of the southbound right‐only lanes to an optional through/right lane. It would also modify the eastbound right‐turn lane to decrease vehicle speeds and improve safety for pedestrians crossing the lane.
Estimated Total Cost = $3,825,000. These costs include design and construction.
Communications and Public Information Office
301 W. 2nd Street, Austin, TX 78701