Sunday, April 8, 2012
Anyone who’s given the proposed Central Texas Airport a second thought has wondered just how FM 969 and FM 1704 could handle the traffic that would be generated by such a large project. Well, the revised Environmental Information Document (EID), likely at the USACE’s request, FINALLY addresses ground transportation issues:
Note the careful wording that limits this assessment to the ‘construction phase’ of the project. No mention of what impact the ‘operational phase’ would have. In any case, the additional traffic will not only slow things down. It’s going to be downright DANGEROUS!
To alleviate congestion near the site, road ‘improvements’ are in the works. So not only will there be more traffic but short-term construction to deal with as well:
More long range traffic solutions mention the CAMPO 2035 Plan which includes upgrading FM 969 to a four-lane divided arterial from US 183 to Webberville and a Bastrop County Comprehensive Transportation Plan which would do the same for FM 969 and FM 1704. These projects are a loooong way off. But inquiring minds will wonder just where the money is coming from to implement these grandiose plans.
Yup, according to the EID, taxpayers are on tap to foot the bill. Please note the conditional tense in the last sentence:
So if Road and Bridge Tax revenue is inadequate, what other options are there? Maybe yet another toll road? Or a municipal bond to cover the cost?
A similar situation is currently playing out in Travis County with the developer of the F1 project. This statement from an April 5 article in the AAS - Circuit of the Americas seeks assistance from Travis County for roadwork - should give taxpayers pause:
Ah . . . developers LOVE those three magic words - incentives, abatement, rebate. If the CTA project moves forward, Bastrop County will likely be hearing a lot of them. Hold on to your wallets . . .