Last updated 9-August-2001 (add link to 1969 plans), created August 2000
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Central area freeways, high resolution(221k) Good view of cancelled freeways.
The table below shows all freeways from this plan that were cancelled.
|Crosstown Freeway||This freeway would have started near Mopac (Loop 1) and twelfth street, then followed 15th street just north of the capitol, and then proceeded into east Austin.|
|Riverside / Town Lake Freeway||This freeway would have followed the alignment of First Street through the center of downtown, right along Towne Lake. Just to the east of Congress Avenue, it crossed Towne Lake and then proceeded eastward on the route of Riverside Boulevard.|
|Central Freeway||Starting downtown just west of the Capitol, this freeway would have been located a block or two west of Guadalupe and proceeded northward up to the UT campus, where it would join Guadalupe and follow Guadalupe northward to Koenig lane. It then curved to follow the route of Lamar street. A light rail line was planned for this route in 2000, but was narrowly rejected by Austin voters in November 2000. In the long run, there is still a very good chance that light rail will be built on this route.|
|Camp Mabry Freeway||This freeway would have followed 35th street from Loop 1 to the Central Freeway (Lamar Boulevard.)|
|Koenig Lane Freeway||This freeway would have connected the Central Freeway (Lamar Boulevard) with I35.|
However, freeways not shown on this map have subsequently been constructed, or will be constructed. This is includes the 183 Freeway all the way through Austin, the 290 freeway east of I35, north and south extensions of Loop 1, and west extension of US 71 (Ben White Freeway.)
A 1968 model of the planned section of Loop 1 (Mopac Boulevard) just north of Towne Lake shows the 1st/5th Street Interchange generally as it was actually constructed (there are differences with the as-built structure). Looking at the top of the photo, however, additional direct connector ramps to a freeway can be seen. These ramps would have been connections to the western terminus of the Crosstown Freeway.
The ramps are more clearly visible in the high resolution image.
This document was approved by Austin City Council on April 24, 1969. The Central Freeway, Camp Mabry Freeway, Riverside Freeway, and Crosstown Freeway are all included in the plan. The plan contains cross section views of the freeways and listings of the locations of intersections.
To see the detailed information about these freeways, go to 1969 freeway plans.
This document did not contain any maps.
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Low resolution(158k) This view is sufficient for seeing the plan layout
Also notice the planned routing of 183 in the southeast section of the city near the current Austin Airport (formerly Bergstrom Air Force Base). 183 was shown as being on a new location with a new bridge over the Colorado River.
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Low resolution(132k) This view is sufficient for seeing the plan layout
Also, state highway 130, then called the MoKan expressway, was not yet shown in the plan.
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In the early 1990's, environmentalists took control of Austin City Council. Most of the new freeways in this plan were cancelled in the next revision of the regional transportation plan. Realistically, however, there was almost no chance of ever getting the funding to fully construct all the freeways included in this plan.
The 1985 plan was another example of planners doing a good job to meet traffic flow needs. As Austin descends into hopeless gridlock, all the these freeways are desperately needed.
Below is a listing of the fate of the new freeways.
|Outer Loop, SH45|| Nearly all of this freeway was cancelled in 1994. The only remaining pieces were about half of the northern segment and a short segment in the south.
In 2000, most of the outer parkway was restored to the plan. The western outer parkway remains cancelled. The north segment received enviromental clearance in July 2000 and will be constructed as a tollway, with construction probably starting in 2001. State highway 130 will form the eastern segment of the outer loop. Although the EIS is complte, it is uncertain if 130 will be built. If built, it will almost surely be a tollway. The southern alignment will connect the existing and funded sections of SH45 in south Austin to 130 south of Austin International Airport. This section is long-term and no planning has begun. In 2000, a local developer was talking about building the southern segment of SH45 as a private toll road.
|Koenig Lane Freeway||This freeway is the westward extension of 290 in north Austin from the existing 290 terminus at I-35. This freeway would have cut through some neighborhoods and faced severe opposition. It was cancelled in 1994 and probably is permanently dead.|
|2222 Freeway||West of Loop 360, 2222 was designated as a parkway freeway. The freeway designation was cancelled in 1994. The route will be a 6 lane highway.|
|Mokan Freeway||This became state highway 130. However, 130 is now being routed much further east (away from urbanized area) than shown in the 1985 map.|
The most interesting section of this map is the northwest section. It shows an extensive network of arterial roadways extending from Loop 360 to west of RR 620, and finally all the way to the shores of Lake Travis. Arterial #8 would have extended Spicewoods Springs from Loop 360 all the way to RR 620, roughly parallel to 2222. Numerous other arterials criss-cross the region, which is now largely a wildlife preserve area.
Also of interest on this map is the lack of a designation of the Outer Parkway south of the 620/2222 intersection. Just at the edge of the map, 620 transitions from a parkway (freeway without feeders) to an arterial. The Outer Parkway would have followed Quinlan Park Road, and Quinlan Park road is not designated as a freeway or parkway on this map. (Note that Quinlan Park road is not visible on the map section shown.) So, it appears that the west section of the outer parkway was not officially adopted as of February 1987.
2222 is shown as a parkway between 620 and Loop 360, with a short freeway section near 620. However, between Loop 360 and Loop 1 (Mopac Blvd), no planned improvements are shown for the roadway. Finally, the 183a freeway north of 620 is shown as stopping at FM 1431. By 1994, it would be extended north of 1431 through Leander.
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As noted above, the 1985 plan was substantially revised in the 1994. The Loop 360 freeway, Koenig Lane freeway, 2222 freeway, and most of the outer parkway were cancelled. However, there two new freeway additions to the plan
| High resolution(568k) Due to fine print, use this size to view road names |
In June 2000, the new mobility plan for Austin was adopted. Since 1994, Austin has experienced a high-tech boom with explosive population growth and severe traffic congestion. The new plan adds new freeway designations to address the local gridlock. Environmentally sensitive West Austin remains devoid of freeways.
The Austin Tranportation plan is once again in the expansion mode. Let's hope history does not repeat itself in 5 years!
The new freeway designations in the 2000 plan are shown in the table below.
|SH 71 West, Oak Hill to Bee Caves|| This is an all-new freeway designation
|SH 71 East of Airport||The freeway designation for this facility has been extended eastward to the edge of the study area.|
|290 West||The freeway designation for this facility has been extended westward to the edge of the study area. Previously, the freeway designation stopped at 1826, just west of Oak Hill.|
|290 East||The freeway designation for this facility has been extended eastward, although not all all the way to the edge of the study area.|
|Outer Parkway south||The southern leg of the outer parkway has been restored to the plan. It is shown as a parkway-tollway.|
|183 South||South of SH 71 (alongside the new airport), 183 is now listed as a freeway.|
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