Image credit: TxDOT

Our members, volunteers and partners have consistently ranked IH-35 as the most important transportation project in the region for over a decade. And because of the support from our members, we have continually advocated for this project at the local, state, and federal levels.

In April 2020, we activated our members to send over 500 comments of support to the Texas Transportation Commission urging allocation of full funding for IH-35 Capital Express.

Currently, TxDOT is in preliminary design phases and is conducting community outreach to gather community wants and needs. The IH-35 Capital Express Central Project is a once in a generation opportunity to improve IH-35 and the environment surrounding it and to stitch neighborhoods back together again.

We are thankful for TxDOT's collaboration with the community by incorporating many aspects of local alternatives such as: lowering of the highway, removing the upper decks, reducing speed limits on the frontage roads, and rebuilding the bridges with enhanced pedestrian and bike amenities that will make the highway better for our community.

As TxDOT continues to refine their design and alignments, our goal is to continue to work together with our partners at the City of Austin and the Downtown Austin Alliance to address some aspects of the plan including narrowing of the highway footprint as much as possible and staying within existing rights-of-way in the north central area. Moving forward, we urge TxDOT to work closely with us and the community to identify innovative ways to fund the Caps and Stitches as part of the larger infrastructure project

How you can help

On September 24th, the open comment period closes. We are asking you to send a comment of support to TxDOT to let them know this project remains our number one priority. It is vital that they hear us, so we can work together to make IH 35 better for commerce, commuters, and our community.

Sample comment

Dear Chairman Bugg and Commissioners:

Thank you for recognizing that I-35 through Austin is one of the most chronically congested roadway segments in the State of Texas. As this seriously outdated roadway is often called the Main Street of Texas, all Texans should call for bold and decisive action to transform this critical stretch of infrastructure into a roadway which will accommodate the rapid and immense growth we are experiencing in our great State.

Accordingly, I am writing today to express my support for the ongoing I-35 Capital Express Central design process. I ask that a robust public engagement program continues after September 24th to continue to study design refinements that includes multi-modal elements, east/west crossings, and bike/ped enhancements.

Thank you for your consideration of this request.

How to comment

IH-35 Capital Express at a glance:

  • Total Cost (North-Central-South sections): $8B
  • Central Section Cost: $4.9B
  • Central project boundary: US 290 to US71/Ben White Blvd.
  • Adds 4 "HOV" lanes (2 in each direction)
  • Removes lane decking & places all lanes below grade.
  • Widens east/west connections at 15 cross streets, including a new Fifth street crossing.
  • Enhanced bike/ped crossings with 20-foot buffers & 10-foot shared use paths.
  • Transit access on HOV lanes and into downtown.
  • New Lady Bird Lake bridge.
  • New Red Line bridge & separate pedestrian bridge.