Acting U.S. Deputy Transportation Secretary Victor Mendez joined state and local officials recently at a ribbon-cutting to celebrate the completion of the Manor Expressway (U.S. 290 East) project that will improve mobility in the Austin, Texas, metropolitan area. The $426 million project, which relied on $122.5 million in federal funds, will triple capacity on a route that has seen traffic increase more than 78% since 1990. When completed later this summer, the project will provide Austin with three new tolled expressway lanes in each direction in addition to the three existing nontolled arterial lanes in each direction.
"The Manor Expressway is a Texas-sized example of what strategic investment of federal funds can do for a region this large," said Mendez. "This project underscores the need for Congress to pass a long-term transportation bill so we can continue to invest in projects that will help communities around the country benefit from similar long-term investments."
"Kudos to Austin for providing its residents and workers with better mobility and a convenient way to travel," said Deputy Federal Highway Administrator Gregory Nadeau. "By shortening commute times and creating new opportunities for better jobs, Austin’s quality of life will be improved."
The Manor Expressway project on U.S. 290 East began in 2010 and spans more than 6 miles east of downtown Austin between U.S. 183 and SH 130. Phase One of the project included construction of direct connectors between U.S. 290 and U.S. 183 and 1.5 miles of a new toll road and opened to traffic in December 2012. Phase Two includes construction of U.S. 290 from Chimney Hill Boulevard to east of SH 130 and will open to traffic this month.
The project will restore mobility to fast-growing eastern Travis County, make it safer for drivers to travel in the corridor and provide key connections to other important roadways in the region, including U.S. 183 and the SH 130 toll road.
A 10-ft-wide shared-use bike-pedestrian path runs for 6 miles along the Manor Expressway from the U.S. 183 interchange to east of SH 130. It is separated from the road and connects with other trails in the area.