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Support Urban Rail in Mueller at the Transit Work Group Mtg 6/22/12
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doug
Mueller Community

Posts: 484
Joined on February 18th, 2009
Support Urban Rail in Mueller at the Transit Work Group Mtg 6/22/12
by doug on June 22nd, 2012

Quote:
Although the Mayor recently delayed the bond election for Urban Rail this November, it is important that we continue to let City leadership know that the Mueller community supports Urban Rail and locating a Maintenance Facility in Mueller as part of Phase I. Recently there has been a vocal group opposed to the Mueller alignment, and encouraging a more westerly alignment (North Lamar).

We can let our voice be heard at the City's next Transit Working Group meeting, this Friday, June 22nd from 1:30pm - 3:30pm at City Hall (301 W. Second St.). If you cannot attend, consider writing the mayor and council members in support of rail in Mueller as part of Phase I.

Some key talking points that will resonate with leadership include:

- 13,000/13,000 Total number of residents/employees at full build-out (currently ~ 30% complete)
- Current numbers: 45 business, 3,300 employees, and estimated 3,700 residents.
-The Mueller option provides the opportunity to meet the immediate needs of the rail line with a permanent maintenance facility, one that can be thoughtfully incorporated into the urban core without intruding on existing homes or businesses.
- Mueller Neighborhood Association and Mueller Commission (PIAC) support the maintenance facility.
- Rail enables more density, bringing more value and therefore tax revenue to the city. Mueller has shown support for density, it will not be resisted like it may be in other Central Austin neighborhoods.
- Mueller was designed with rail included in the master plan, and has entitlements (zoning, etc) in place for it. In addition, utility conflicts and modifications to infrastructure are minimal.
- The Lamar route is already well served by buses and has BRT coming soon, the east side is less served and can benefit from improved transit options.
-The Mueller option offers important long-term expansion opportunity to the north on the east side.
- A lot of Mueller's employment density - Dell Children's, Seton, UT, etc. - is already launched and rapidly expanding.- The need for connectivity within the urban core is important to Austin's future. Connectivity to the central business district with linkages to the university, state complex and hospitals make transit an obvious benefit for downtown and the surrounding neighborhoods in central and east Austin. It is especially important to Mueller as the home to Dell Children's Medical Center and to the University of Texas health research campus.


Travis, I'm sorry that I wasn't able to make it to the meeting today. Did you go? What happened?
 
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schnauzerhouse2
Mueller Community

Posts: 23
Joined on August 17th, 2008
Support Urban Rail in Mueller at the Transit Work Group Mtg 6/22/12
by schnauzerhouse2 on June 23rd, 2012

Yesterday, Janelle and I attended the TWG meeting at City Hall. Both Greg Weaver and I spoke to TWG members on behalf of extending urban rail to Mueller in phase one.
After a third person spoke in opposition to urban rail’s extension to Mueller, Mayor Leffingwell publicly voiced his support for Mueller’s inclusion in phase 1 when/if urban rail comes about. He stated that his recommendation was largely based on our willingness to accept placement of the urban rail maintenance facility at Mueller.
Both Catellus and the Mueller Neighborhood Association have previously expressed the desire to have the maintenance facility located here.
Don D.
 
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doug
Mueller Community

Posts: 484
Joined on February 18th, 2009
Support Urban Rail in Mueller at the Transit Work Group Mtg 6/22/12
by doug on June 23rd, 2012

Thanks for the update, Don.
 
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Jack Chen
Mueller Community

Posts: 33
Joined on October 2nd, 2009
Support Urban Rail in Mueller at the Transit Work Group Mtg 6/22/12
by Jack Chen on June 24th, 2012

Don,

Good job!!! Thank you so much for voicing out.

Best,

Jack
 
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Jack Chen
Mueller Community

Posts: 33
Joined on October 2nd, 2009
Support Urban Rail in Mueller at the Transit Work Group Mtg 6/22/12
by Jack Chen on June 24th, 2012

Don,

Good job!!! Thank you so much for voicing out.

Best,

Jack
 
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doug
Mueller Community

Posts: 484
Joined on February 18th, 2009
Support Urban Rail in Mueller
by doug on June 25th, 2012

Here's an op-ed from Robert Spillar, COA Trans. Dept. Director where he discusses multi-modal transportation options:

http://www.austin-mobility.com/news/austin-business-journal-op-ed-no-single-solution-to-traffic

June 22, 2012
Austin Business Journal Op-Ed: ‘no single solution to traffic’

The Austin Business Journal printed a guest editoral by Austin Transportation Director Robert Spillar on June 22, 2012.
Urban rail will be one of many ways to fight traffic

Premium content from Austin Business Journal

by Rob Spillar, Contributing Writer

Friday, June 22, 2012

In a recent editorial, the Austin Business Journal poses the question if Urban Rail can “be a key component in Austin’s solution to traffic woes.”

As the director of the Austin Transportation Department, I’m quick to point out that there is no single “solution to traffic woes.” National transportation experts agree.

In Austin, that is especially true because our transportation challenges are complex. Short of tearing up neighborhoods and threatening community icons, there is no simple solution to our congested travel system.

Our congested roads are an unfortunate byproduct of being an economically successful and dynamic urban area. What our city does not have, as compared to many of our peer cities competing for private sector investment, is a wide array of travel options for people to commute and move spontaneously.

Our metro area added about 150 people a day between 2010 and 2011, the ABJ recently reported. And, as noted in his 2011 State of the City address, the mayor has said “Austin’s traffic problems are the direct result of our dramatic, ongoing population growth, and our dramatic, ongoing failure to invest in the systems and infrastructure we need to stay ahead of it.”

What the city is doing, in concert with our regional partners, is pursuing a holistic approach to mobility — walking, biking, high-capacity transit and driving — to give our citizens reliable and affordable ways to get to where they live and work throughout the region.

Urban rail is an important part of a much larger, highly networked road and transit system developing throughout the Austin region. It does this by providing multiple connections to the currently operating MetroRail line serving Austin to Leander, the emerging MetroRapid bus serving South and Northwest Austin planned for 2014, and the planned regional rail line connecting Georgetown to San Antonio.

Infrastructure investments, such as urban rail, shape land use and development patterns and can ensure that Austin maintains its charm and quality of life for residents of all ages and backgrounds, even as its population continues to skyrocket. In short, it will help keep Austin like Austin.

We’ve also heard from other cities that rail investment generates jobs and economic growth by providing an anchor for private sector investment. That means every Austinite benefits from the increased property and sales tax revenue generated from large transportation projects because it directly supplements the city’s general revenue fund. That fund pays for services such as Austin’s police, firefighters and parks.

Robert Spillar, P.E.

Director of Transportation

Austin Transportation Department
 
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