The downtown neighborhood built around a redeveloped Austin power plant should be easier to get to (or leave) after a series of upcoming mobility improvements is completed. The Austin City Council approved the projects in and sround the Seaholm district at its December 14 meeting.

The projects include improvements to a Shoal Creek Trail underpass at the Third Street bike/pedestrian bridge; a $4 million expansion of the bridge; intersection improvements at Third Street and West Avenue.and a $1 million study and preliminary design for a public plaza at the Third Street trestle bridge.

Further negotiations with Union Pacific Railroad would be needed to construct a new underpass at the location between the tracks at Bowie street and to realize the full plan for the trestle bridge.

Sidewalk and trail connectivity along Cesar Chavez Street from B.R. Reynolds Drive to San Antonio Street and trail crossings at West Avenue and Walter Seaholm Drive will also be improved.

The projects are funded through the Seaholm Tax-Increment Reinvestment Zone, a designation that allows the city to subsidize economic development and municipal projects through diverted tax revenue.  

City Transportation and Public Works staff, Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Council representatives, and community-based nonprofit organizations were among those recommending the changes to the City Council.