US 290/SH 71 among the state’s most congested roads
The Oak Hill Parkway project examines improving long-term mobility along one of the state’s most congested roadways.
US 290/SH 71 from Loop 1 (MoPac) to FM 1826 in Oak Hill is identified as the 55th most congested roadway in Texas, based on a study performed by the Texas A&M Transportation Institute. The study is updated annually and examines nearly 1,800 roadways across Texas. In addition, the 2016 study shows traffic congestion along US 290 in Oak Hill causes 173,000 annual hours of delay per mile.
Austin metro area is one of the fastest growing communities in the country
If you’ve noticed more people around town in the past year, it’s not your imagination. The Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan area, which includes Oak Hill, grew by 160 people a day in 2015-2016, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
The Austin metro area was the nation’s ninth fastest-growing metro area last year and the most populated location among the 15 fastest-growing metro areas.
Protecting endangered species and vegetation as part of Oak Hill Parkway project
In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act, a Biological Resources Report is being prepared. This report covers existing ecological conditions, including current vegetation and species habitat in the area compared to the anticipated impacts of the Oak Hill Parkway build alternatives.
“The report will look at ways to minimize impacts to endangered species and vegetation based on state and federal environmental regulations,” said Larry Cox with Cox|McLain Environmental Consulting, Inc., one of our Oak Hill Parkway team members. “These steps include coordination with Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and consultation with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on the Endangered Species Act.”
Experienced ecologists performed field investigations during the 2015-2016 seasons, which included vegetation surveys and mapping, threatened and endangered species habitat assessments, plant surveys, and land-use mapping (where right of entry was granted by landowners).
The report will be included in the Draft Environmental Impact Statement, which will be released later this year for public review and comment, and it will be discussed at the formal public hearing.
Oak Hill’s highways are part of TxDOT’s first 100 years
- 2017 marks the 100-year anniversary for TxDOT
- US 290 was built in 1927 as a state highway; the same year that Calvin Coolidge was President and Charles Lindbergh made the first solo cross-Atlantic flight
- SH 71 West was constructed as a Farm-to-Market Road in 1944
- The “Y” in Oak Hill took its current form in the 1950s