by VERONICA GORDON
Pct. 2 County Commissioner Mark Jones is continuing his efforts to advocate for the construction of SH 45 SW, the proposed 3.5-mile road connecting Loop 1 (MoPac) in Austin and FM 1626 in suburban Buda.
“We’ll keep pushing for it with everything we’ve got,” Jones said Monday.
At its board meeting earlier this month the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO) voted to keep SH 45 SW in its 2035 Regional Transportation Plan, rejecting a request from the city of Austin to remove the road from its list of projects.
“It’s very much the right thing to do,” Jones said. “(CAMPO) made the right decision.”
CAMPO’s policy board is chaired by Hays County Pct. 3 Commissioner Will Conley, who has advocated for the roadway’s construction. Last year, Hays County offered to contribute $5 million toward construction. Even though nearly all of the road would lie in Travis County, tens of thousands of Hays County resident use it to commute to and from Austin every day.
Opponents of the road expressed concerns that the road will encourage development on or near environmentally sensitive land.
In June, the Austin City Council deleted the project from its Comprehensive Plan. The council also directed city staff to request deletion of the proposed roadway from the CAMPO plan.
Since then, Hays County commissioners, Buda City Council and Kyle City Council have all come together in support of the project.
Elected officials from all three entities believe that SH 45 SW is a critical solution to relieving traffic congestion, reducing pollution, increasing safety for those traveling and living along FM 1626 and Brodie Lane, and improving future connectivity.
“It’s a roadway that this region needs built,” Jones added.Email | Print