Shoal Creek Trail Connectivity Gaps

City of Austin staff from the Transportation and Public Works (TPW) and Parks and Recreation departments are partnering to address the last major gaps in the Shoal Creek Trail between Lady Bird Lake and US 183 between West 24th Street and West 34th Street.
  • A South Gap from West 24th Street to 2800 Shoal Creek Boulevard (landslide)
  • A Middle Gap from West 29th Street to West 31st Street
  • A North Gap from West 31st Street to West 34th Street
project scope map
An overview map of the three Shoal Creek Trail gaps

Project Moves Forward with Modified Options

After receiving more than 940 comments from the community during the Fall of 2023, the City of Austin is moving forward with a series of modified alternatives to address these three gaps in the Shoal Creek Trail. Improving all three gaps received strong support from the community and each gap proposal has been updated to reflect comments and preferences from the outreach process, as follows:
  • The South Gap was strongly supported in general with requests to maintain two-way motor vehicle access on Shoal Creek Boulevard. As a result, two-way traffic will be maintained with a walking lane installed on the north side of the southern bridge. The raised crossing and bicycle-shared lane markings will help to keep motor vehicle speeds low and will support safe uses for all trail users. View the final South Gap schematic.
  • The Middle Gap was also strongly supported. Within this gap proposal were three options for how to best manage the W. 31st Street and Lamar Boulevard intersection. Option 3 calls for upgrading the pedestrian hybrid beacon (PHB) to a full signal and received the strongest support. Funding will be sought for this preferred option. In the meantime, Option 1 will progress with multimodal connectivity upgrades to the existing pedestrian hybrid beacon without adding the access control called for in Option 2 as it would later have to be removed when a full signal was installed. View the final Middle Gap schematic.
  • The North Gap offered four options for the east and four options for the west segment of the trail. About six in seven people who participated in the public process had experienced the current pilot that is now in place along W. 31st Street and Shoal Creek Boulevard. View the final North Gap schematic.
    • For the East Segment along West 31st Street, Option 4 with traffic calming, shared lane markings, on-street parking on the north curb, and a widened sidewalk received the strongest support. While prior phases of community engagement supported the implementation of a traditional physical trail (options 1 through 3), there was not clear support for one of these three options in this round of public feedback. Given this, the pilot will be removed, and traffic calming and shared lane markings will be installed. Funding is not yet identified for the widened sidewalk. In lieu of this, the pre-pilot in-street walking lane on the south curb will be restored with the addition of a low physical barrier. Trail-based solutions could be further explored in the future.  
    • For the West Segment along Shoal Creek Boulevard, Option 3 which upgrades the sidewalk through the park to a full trail was most favored. Funding for the trail is not yet confirmed. This option will move forward starting with kicking off a Preliminary Engineering Study. Consistent with the east side, the street will be restored to pre-pilot conditions with the addition of traffic calming and bicycle-shared lane markings.  

Funding

Funding has been identified for the south and middle gap trail construction, preliminary engineering for the parkland trail from W. 31st Street to 34th Street and the traffic calming treatments along W. 31st Street and Shoal Creek Boulevard. Funding is not yet identified for the signal at W. 31st Street and Lamar Boulevard, the widened pedestrian sidewalk along the North Gap between the trailhead and Lamar Boulevard, and construction funds for the North Gap parkland trail segment.

Prior Community Engagement

Fall 2023: The City of Austin hosted a virtual open house to get feedback on options for the South, Middle, and North Gaps. View a full summary of the community feedback. Read the latest stakeholder email update.
May 2021: Implementation of North Gap Trail Pilot. In August 2021 the pilot was modified based on feedback. 
November 2020: Virtual open house with updated North Gap Trail options as part of the North University Neighborhood Bikeway Project.