The city’s Engineering and Capital Improvements department is inching closer to beginning the long-awaited construction of sidewalks and bike lanes on a heavily traveled ¾-mile segment of Old Ranch Road 12.
The project includes new north- and south-bound sidewalks and bike lanes from Holland Street, near the northern edge of the Texas State University campus, to Craddock Avenue, a major arterial that feeds traffic to residential areas. A center turn lane for auto traffic will also be added at critical places along the route.
The estimated construction cost is $3.5 million, a price tag that also includes major reconstruction to lower a portion of the road bed; a traffic signal at the hairy intersection of Old Ranch Road 12 and Franklin Street; and new water and wastewater lines within the road’s right-of-way.
Construction is anticipated to begin in September 2014 and be completed by April 2015.
The city is hosting a public meeting on the project at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 6 at the San Marcos Activity Center, 501 E Hopkins St.
In 2005, voters approved the sale of $100,000 in general obligation bonds to fund construction of hike/bike facilities along Ranch Road 12, which were envisioned at the time as a considerably more modest dual-use pea-gravel trail running alongside the road. Last May, the San Marcos City Council agreed to roll the sidewalks and bike lane construction into a larger project encompassing Old Ranch Road 12 widening and utility improvements.
The new facilities will include a new 4,000-foot-long water line and 810 feet of wastewater line.
Last June, the city council approved the most costly of three options for the project presented by city staff, going with dedicated sidewalks and bike lanes the full length of the project boundaries instead of shared auto/bike lanes or partial sidewalks. The other options would have cost $2.75 million and $2.7 million, respectively, and did not include Old Ranch Road 12 reconstruction.
View Old Ranch Road 12 hike/bike improvements in a larger map
UPDATE 9:26 p.m. FEB. 4: The story was updated to include more detail about the Ranch Road 12 hike and bike improvements included in the 2005 bond package.