Help make North Lamar safe for biking!

A virtual public hearing is starting TODAY regarding improvements planned for the northernmost part of Lamar Boulevard:  the  6-mile stretch from 183 up to Howard Lane/I-35. This is a high-volume, high-speed road that’s owned and maintained by TxDOT, and it currently has no bike facilities at all.  But it’s very much a part of the City of Austin, and we need it to be safe for biking. You can review the current plans, and watch a video of the city’s presentation, here.

The good news is that the planned, funded improvements include 12 miles of new, shared-use paths, which would create continuous bike facilities along both sides of the corridor. Funding for these improvements comes mainly from the mobility bond Austin voters approved in 2016.

Getting these facilities in place will be awesome, but they could be even better. The city is also considering further improvements, including enhanced and separated bike facilities, more trees, and better streetscapes – but these additional improvements are not yet funded.

The additional improvements we’d like to see immediately include:

  • Moving the bike lanes further away from car traffic;
  • A landscape buffer, including street trees, between the bike facility and the car traffic;
  • Removing sharp turns from the planned bike lanes, so two people can safely ride side-by-side;
  • More bike-friendly intersections; e.g., so bikes can safely cross the planned slip lanes. 

If you’d like to see improvements like these, now’s the time to speak up! You can submit your comments online here, or email them to NorthLamar@AustinTexas.gov, anytime until 5pm Saturday, May 30. 

Your comments could include language like this:

I support the overall plan to add bikeways and sidewalks, but I’d like to see adjustments to make them safer and more comfortable. In particular, the bike lanes should be moved further away from car traffic; the  landscaping & trees strip should be placed between the bikeway and the roadway lanes; sharp turns should be removed from the bike lanes, so two people can safely ride side-by-side; and the intersections should be more bike-friendly; for example, people on bikes need to be able to cross the planned slip lanes safely.

Responses to comments received before the deadline will be posted on the project website.