Mobility

Mobility Outcome: Getting us where we want to go, when we want to get there, safely and cost-effectively
The Mobility Outcome strategies focus on making our city and transportation network accessible and reliable for all members of our community. With an emphasis on collaboration, sustainable funding, and effective planning for the future, these strategies address our goals of providing equitable and safe access to a multimodal transportation network, reducing harmful emissions, meeting the needs of our growing community, and connecting Austin to the world.
Within the Mobility Outcome, the City Council selected the “Accessibility to and equity of multi-modal transportation choices” indicator category as a priority.

This year, Austin took an important step forward to improve mobility and expand our community’s transit options. Voters approved an initial investment in Project Connect, a once-in-a-generation opportunity to revolutionize our transportation infrastructure. In response to City Council Resolution 20190808-081, the City Manager’s Office collaborated with the Financial Services Department to provide options that would support the creation, operation, and maintenance of a high-capacity transit system, in line with the Austin Strategic Mobility Plan. As a result, the City Council adopted the Project Connect Vision Plan which includes two new light rail lines, a downtown tunnel, new Metro Rapid service, new neighborhood circulators, park and rides, and more. In November, voters approved a property tax investment in Project Connect, including an investment of $300 million for transit-supportive anti-displacement strategies. This effort also spurred the creation of the Austin Transit Partnership, a new, independent organization created for the purpose of implementing the Project Connect program, in coordination with the City, through the new Project Connect Office, and Capital Metro.
Project Connect rendering
Voters also gave their support for an additional $460 million investment in sidewalks, bikeways, urban trails,  and other transportation programs to improve safety and mobility for our community, consistent with the Austin Strategic Mobility Plan. Public Works, Austin Transportation, and the Corridor Program Office began in earnest creating an implementation plan to realize the community benefits in line with Council direction. 

The Austin Transportation Department also supported the COVID-19 response implementing the Healthy Streets initiative, reduced speed limits on 850 miles of residential streets, implemented transit enhancements, expanded active transportation in Austin, modernized Austin’s public space parking system, planned for future improvements to traffic, and created an online Right of Way permit service.
Our Public Works Department completed construction on several major projects including a new joint fire/emergency medical service station in East Austin, a new recreation and community center in the Montopolis neighborhood, and new public restrooms downtown.
Austin-Bergstrom International Airport withstood significant reductions in demand caused by COVID-19 while investing in resilience measures to keep passengers safe, adding new air service to locations such as Long Beach and Asheville, and increasing cargo service.

The Corridor Program Office, tasked with designing and constructing corridors that support mobility, livability, and other outcomes for the 2016 Mobility Bond Program, broke ground and completed several critical safety and mobility projects on major corridors including Guadalupe, North Lamar, and East Riverside Drive, while laying the groundwork for the bulk of construction between 2021 and 2024.

Fleet Mobility Services dedicated significant resources to assisting with the City's COVID-19 response, by managing inventory and distribution of needed supplies between the emergency operations center, testing sites, and other resource hubs.
Browse each department's accomplishments:

Bike lanes on Congress

Austin Transportation

  • FY2020 Approved Budget: $77.5 million 
  • Full-time Employees: 326

Accomplishments 

  • Supported the COVID-19 response by implementing the Healthy Streets Initiative for a total of 10 miles, launching the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” program with Good Apple which delivered 511,000 pounds of fresh produce and pantry staples for people at-risk of severe COVID-19 infection, and installing 75 Food Priority Parking zones to aid restaurants adapting their business model to pick-up and drop-off services.
  •  Reduced speed limits on 850 miles of residential streets and launched Vision Zero safety videos designed to prevent key driver behaviors which lead to serious injury and fatal crashes. 
  • Implemented transit enhancements by painting 26 blocks of red bus lanes on Guadalupe/Lavaca, improving signal interactivity, partnering with CapMetro on “MetroBike” for better last mile connections, and providing technical assistance for Project Connect.
  • Expanded active transportation in Austin by completing 15 miles of new and improved bikeways, 7.8 miles of protected bikeways, five protected intersections, 20 pedestrian crossings, and designing 40 Safe Routes to School projects.
  • Modernized Austins public parking space system with contactless pay-by-plate technology and more equitable tiered pricing to allow customers to extend parking time without incurring parking penalties.
  •  Planned for future improvements to traffic movement by providing engineering design for Corridor Program, Safety Initiatives, and IH-35 Capital Express projects. Also retimed traffic signals to decrease travel times almost 5% along retimed corridors.
  •   Created an online Right of Way (ROW) permit service model to continue providing service to customers seeking ROW permits.

Awards

  • Parsons Smart Cities Challenge Winner, 2nd Place — a national award for a six-month pilot to test Parsons' Intelligent Intersection Solutions platform

TSA checkpoint

Aviation

  • FY2020 Approved Budget: $295.4 million
  • Full-Time Employees: 549

Airport worker cleaning

Accomplishments

  • Deployed airport recovery, safety, and resilience measures to ensure passenger and employee safety during COVID-19.  As a result, about 95% of Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) travelers surveyed expressed confidence that AUS is taking the necessary precautions to ensure the health and safety of passengers.
  • Added new air service to locations such as Long Beach and Asheville, and increased service to locations such as Cancun.
  • Partnered with 30+ airports across North America to host two live stream music festivals featuring local Austin musicians, culminating in more than 69,000 views.
  •  Increased cargo service through AUS by 59% year-over-year (September 2019-September 2020) and reduced airport operational costs by $28 million to respond to industry-wide financial challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Awards

  • Conde Nast Traveler’s Best U.S. Airports — #10
  • J.D. Power’s 2020 North America Airport Satisfaction Study, Best U.S. Large Airports — #8

New sidewalk being laid on Nueces St along the Guadalupe St. Corridor

Corridor Program Office

  • FY2020 Approved Budget: $2.3 million
  • Full-Time Employees: 15

Accomplishments 

East Riverside Drive corridor 

Awards 

  • 2020 Engineering Excellence Award from the American Council of Engineering Companies — Gold Medal for the Austin in Motion prioritization method used to prioritize the corridor improvements in the Corridor Construction Program
  • International Netexplo Smart Cities Award for best practices in mobility, specifically referencing the Austin Strategic Mobility Plan, the 2016 Mobility Bond, and the emphasis on multimodal and micro-mobility transportation

Street work in Austin

Public Works 

  • FY2020 Approved Budget: $124.9 million
  • Full-Time Employees: 594

Accomplishments

  • Completed construction and opened the Del Valle Fire/EMS Station as part of the five-priority fire station program to build five new stations in six years and provide improved response times in underserved neighborhoods.
  • Installed three new public restrooms downtown in collaboration with Austin Water, Transportation, Building Services, Economic Development, and the Downtown Austin Alliance. 
  • Completed construction of the new Montopolis Recreation and Community Health Center.  
  • Supported the construction of Capital Metro’s Downtown Red Line Rail Station expansion project.
Fire Station 50/EMS 36
Montopolis building

Awards 

  • “2020 In-House Project of the Year (Transportation Category)” Award for North Lamar Sidewalk Accessibility Project from the America Public Works Association (APWA) — Texas Chapter (TPWA) 
  • “2020 In-House Project of the Year (Structures Category)” for Sprinkle Cutoff Road Flood Mitigation Project from the America Public Works Association (APWA) — Texas Chapter (TPWA) 
  • Texas Employer Traffic Safety Award for Promoting Safe Driving Practices from National Safety Council (in partnership with TXDOT)
  • Austin-Bergstrom Terminal Expansion, a project managed/delivered by Public Works Capital Delivery Team, received LEED Gold Certification
  • Austin Central Library, a project managed/delivered by Public Works Capital Delivery Team, received Committee on the Environment (COTE) Top Ten Award from the American Institute of Architects (AIA)  
  • Street and Bridge Equipment Operators received First Place in Texas Award at Texas Association for Public Works (TPWA)’s Heavy Equipment ‘Roadeo’ Skills Competition 
  • Excellence in the Field Award, given by the American Public Works Association Texas Chapter, recognizing the City’s multi-departmental efforts in support of the Homeless Encampment Clean Up Pilot Program which tested a standardized process for cleaning encampments, especially on Watershed Protection lands (This particular award also recognized all these departments: Austin Police, Parks and Recreation, Austin Public Health, Austin Resource Recovery, Watershed Protection, Communications and Technology Management’s Office of Design and Delivery, and Downtown Austin Community Court.)