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Triangle Development

In order to raise money, the State of Texas will be allowing developers to build on the State land bordered by 45th St., Guadalupe, and Lamar. Neighborhood activists have been fighting the proposed development since at least 1996, trying to ensure that the development is compatible with the neighborhood and not just another concrete strip-mall. This is a huge issue and we don't intend to cover the whole controversy in detail here. (For detailed information, see the Hyde Park Neighborhood Association's site.) But we do want to present some information here about the project that is of interest to cyclists, since a development of this scale will have a huge impact on local traffic. Patrick Goetz, a local cycling activist, is on a committee which will make recommendations about traffic planning concerning the project. Here's is Goetz' report.

Report by Patrick Goetz, 9-9-98

As some of you know, a great deal of effort has gone into insuring that the proposed development of the state land at the intersection of Lamar and Guadalupe is handled as intelligently as possible. (I hesitate to use the buzzwords "new urbanism" or "compact city", but I'm sure you get the idea.)

To accompany a relatively dense development by Austin standards, we - a citizen's advisory committee - have put together a list of recommendations for improving traffic conditions in the areas around the Triangle. The current list of recommendations is included below. We are actively soliciting comments and/or additional suggestions.

There is no deadline for comments, but, as stated in the recommendations, we would like to get the city's rubber stamp on a final list of guaranteed improvements before the development of the project begins. Calthorpe will unveil the final project design on September 24th (1998), so it might be a good idea to have our traffic plan recommendations finalized by this date.

There is no single correct way to submit recommendations. Anyone is welcome to attend the citizen's advisory group meetings at Threadgill's on Lamar on Monday evenings at 7:00. Certainly they can be emailed to me, and it might be interesting to cc: them one of the Austrans lists.

Other people who can be contacted are:

The Triangle project is "big". If all goes well, this whole excruciating process will culminate in a nationally recognized new urb development, not to mention a model for future infill in Austin and a great asset to the city. This might very well be the best opportunity in decades to push the city to implement some real traffic mitigation measures (roundabouts, bike lanes, sidewalks, narrowed and improved streets, traffic light synchronization, etc.). Let's not let this opportunity pass unaddressed.

We, the traffic subcommittee recommend that:

Specific recommendations, highest priority:


Other recommendations:

In the interest of regional transportation planning, we suggest that there are a number of streets which lend themselves to conversion from 4-lane to 1-lane each way with a center turn lane, bike lanes and sidewalks for pedestrians. In addition, some 2 lane streets should be enhanced/restricted in order to facilitate bicycle and pedestrian traffic. These include (but are not limited to):

Put this calendar on your website! Copy and paste the following code:

To link to the calendar on its own page, use the address:

I've tried without success to get local groups to add their events to this calendar (Bike Texas, the Yellow Bike Project, City's Bicycle Program, Bike Austin, etc.)
If you'd like to help edit the calendar, or at least add your group's events to it, then please let me know!

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