WHAT WE DO

The Austin Transportation Department does its best to keep Austin connected and on the move. Read more below to learn what our department does.

 

Ensuring Public Safety 

As an integral part of urban life, transportation can widely affect public safety and health. Through specialized programs, the Austin Transportation Department strives to promote safe mobility in and around the city.

Vision Zero

Vision Zero is an international movement to eliminate all traffic-related deaths and injuries. In 2016, the City of Austin adopted the Vision Zero Action Plan to achieve this goal through five strategic elements: education, engineering, evaluation, enforcement and policy.

 

Austin Transportation works to improve roadway designs with the goal of enhancing safety and reducing crashes, and collaborates with Austin Police across different strategic areas to increase public awareness and enforcement on measures to prevent traffic deaths and injuries.

Vision Zero
Outreach and Awareness

74

outreach events

22,249

people reached

245

people who signed the Vision Zero pledge

Enforcement: Vision Zero in Action

Vision Zero in Action encompasses targeted enforcement of traffic safety laws on Austin streets, followed shortly by distribution of educational materials about transportation safety. Police officers target behaviors and locations that result in a disproportionate share of crashes in which people are injured or killed, as well as behaviors that contribute to congestion and air quality issues. Specific locations and enforcement efforts are informed by Austin Transportation and Austin Police data.

3,524

total citations and warnings
for Vision Zero in Action enforcement

Top Citations and Warnings

1,777

speeding

827

driver inattention / hands-free violation, e.g., texting while operating a vehicle in motion

442

failure to stop

Austin Traffic Deaths, Year by Year

More information can be found on the City of Austin's Vision Zero program website, where you will find reports on crash statistics and program enforcement.

Designing for Safety

Through extensive vetting, analysis, engineering and design, our safety improvement projects at major locations address public safety and mobility on a large scale.

$4.78 million

spent on 5 completed intersection safety improvement projects

  • Pleasant Valley Road and Elmont Drive, completed May 2018 – $1.70 million

  • Congress Avenue and Oltorf Street, completed July 2018 – $1.02 million

  • 45th Street and Red River Street, completed September 2018 – $45,000

  • Slaughter Lane and Cullen Lane, completed December 2018 – $174,000

  • Slaughter Lane and Manchaca Road, completed December 2018 – $1.85 million

Strengthening the Multimodal System

As Austin continues to grow, the Austin Transportation Department makes sure to monitor traffic and incidents in its connected system around the clock and bring improvements where needed.

 

Transportation Management Center

The Transportation Management Center (TMC) is the City of Austin's headquarters for monitoring and managing traffic throughout the Austin area. The center is staffed seven days a week through peak travel times, and may be staffed continuously through large events.  Visit the Transportation Management Center's Data and Performance Hub to see more and follow @austinmobility on Twitter for real-time traffic updates.

7,981

customer service requests

addressed over the year

4,997

field technician repair dispatches

over the year

48,000

hours of travel time saved over the year due to signal timing adjustments and

traffic updates posted on dynamic message signs across the city

4,739

signal timing adjustments

over the year

341

traffic signals retimed over the year

962

traffic update Twitter posts

72

special events managed

Signs and Markings

2,528 miles

of roadway, measured by centerline length,

in Austin's full purpose jurisdiction

7,851 miles

of lanes (centerline roadway length multiplied by number of lanes) in Austin's full purpose jurisdiction

629 miles

of roadway markings maintained —
almost 1/4 of all roadway length in Austin

2,085

new road signs installed

747

crosswalks maintained

17,880

road signs repaired or replaced

6,531

raised pavement markers installed

Signals and Beacons

In 2017, the department turned on...

12

new traffic signals

15

pedestrian hybrid beacons

and now operates a total of...

1,005

traffic signals

76

pedestrian hybrid beacons

 

Encouraging Active and Sustainable Trips

Our department works to improve Austin streets in the interest of safety and mobility for people of all ages and abilities as they drive, walk, bike and take transit.

Designing for Different Modes

The Active Transportation and Street Design Division works to help everyone of all ages and abilities take more active travel options, such as walking and biking, around Austin safely, comfortably and conveniently. Austin is one of 10 cities selected for the Big Jump Project, a 2017-2020 initiative of the national organization PeopleForBikes, to increase the number of people traveling by bicycle in the city’s central core.

10.3

miles of new bicycle lane miles added, bringing Austin to a total of 267.5 miles of bicycle facilities

25.8

miles of new and improved bicycle facilities completed

12.3

miles of new buffered or protected bicycle lanes completed

Smart Trips

Smart Trips Austin is an educational program that aims to reduce drive-alone trips and increase trips taken by foot, bike, scooter, bus or shared car. The City of Austin and Capital Metro work together to encourage Austin community members to take more sustainable options for getting around. In 2018, Smart Trips launched in the Central East Austin area and added education and events that included bike-share and scooter-share options. Smart Trips activities for the year include...

~8,000

households reached

15

customized events
(7 bike tours, 1 scooter tour, 5 transit adventures, 2 walks)

637

toolkits of transportation resources hand-delivered

18

community events attended

526

people reached at in-person events (customized and community events)

Air Quality

The City's Air Quality Program aims to promote healthy outdoor air for all community members while also managing traffic congestion. By encouraging people to take up sustainable alternatives to driving alone, we can positively impact our region's air quality. Throughout 2018, the Air Quality Program participated in several outreach events, and the air quality educational messaging via radio, digital ads, and social media resulted in over 5.5 million gross impressions.

 

Below are the recorded air quality days with good, moderate and unhealthy levels of ground-level ozone in 2018.

322

"good" air quality days

33

"moderate" air quality days

10

"unhealthy for sensitive groups"
air quality days

Connecting with the Community

We stay connected to the community through engagement and outreach in the form of completed service requests, weekly newsletter updates, press releases and more.

 

In 2018, the department...

 

... responded to 30,575 customer service requests...

Traffic Signals, 49.50%

Right-of-Way Management, 15.90%

Signs and Markings, 14.88%

Traffic Engineering, 10.77%

Parking Meters, 5.08%

Active Transportation, 1.73%

Parking Enforcement, 2.15%

Community members can submit requests regarding any of the above topics to Austin 3-1-1 by phone or mobile app.

Regulating and Permitting

To ensure safety and smooth operations for all road users,  Austin Transportation staff oversee the regulation and permitting of the City’s right of way for a variety of purposes and occasions.

 

Special Events

The Office of Special Events works to ensure safety through inspection, regulation and traffic control of department-permitted special events.

233

special events held

that were permitted

by Austin Transportation

363

special events days

~2.2 million

attendees of special events permitted by Austin Transportation

Right-of-Way Management

The Right of Way (ROW) Management Division reviews and processes permit applications, reviews engineered traffic control plans and utility plans, and plays an integral part in inspection and code enforcement for activities in the City's right of way. This incorporates all facets of activities, as it relates to construction work zones within the right of way.

Number of permits issued

9,186

excavation (for all manner of utility and right of way infrastructure work)

1,612

temporary use of right of way (usually construction)

289

valet (for operating customer vehicle drop-off and return zones, temporary or permanent)

2,727

driveway/sidewalk (for any work on driveways, sidewalks, curbs, and/or gutters and includes residential and commercial impacts to this type of infrastructure)

1,490

parking (for using a City parking space for temporary loading and unloading)

265

film permits

15

vendor permits (to sell, offer for sale, exchange, or take orders for merchandise) at a specific location in the right of way

Parking

The Parking Enterprise Division manages on-street parking to balance the needs for residents, businesses and visitors to our city, while promoting compliance with all City parking ordinances. This includes parking meters, parking enforcement, commercial vehicle loading zones, residential parking permits, musician loading zones and permits, car-share parking, valet enforcement, and more.

366

new metered parking spaces

27%

of all transactions were for metered parking made with the mobile payment parking app

~7,000

off-street parking spaces available

at 29 participating garages in the Affordable Parking Program

Affordable Parking Program

Austin Transportation's Affordable Parking Program provides parking overnight at City-owned facilities in or near the downtown area for hospitality and service industry workers. The monthly charge is as low as $35, which is significantly lower than typical downtown parking garage prices. In 2018, the city partnered with multiple garages to offer over 7,000 available spaces through the program and looks to expand as more facilities are made available.

Parking and Transportation Management Districts

Austin Transportation activated two Parking and Transportation Management districts in 2018: one for Central East Austin and one for the Colorado River Area. The purpose of extending parking hours is to increase parking availability and combat congestion associated with vehicles circulating to find parking. In a Parking and Transportation Management District, 51% of fees collected from metered parking, less City expenses are allocated to infrastructure projects in the area.

For the Central East Austin district, Austin Transportation heard from stakeholders and conducted parking occupancy studies which showed there was little to no available parking on many streets in the area during daytime hours. Metering public parking helps create turnover so that people are more likely to find spaces. As of spring 2019, the East Austin Parking and Transportation Management District has helped fund 150 feet of sidewalks, which filled gaps in pedestrian mobility needs in the area.

For the Colorado River Area district, the City of Austin and Austin Independent School District, under an interlocal agreement, installed parking meters on streets by Austin High School in order to provide adequate parking for Austin High School students and ensure enough turnover for the public to park and visit the trails and nearby areas. All revenue on Stephen F. Austin Drive, minus City expenses, is the sole property of AISD, since this is a privately maintained school road.