NEWS: Designs for the Traffic Calming Plan have been issued by the City of Austin. View them HERE.


History of the Traffic Calming Project:


The Old Enfield HOA has been working with the city of Austin for a dozen years to have a Traffic Calming plan implemented.  After several years in the works, the city has conducted its traffic studies, had its engineers determine what devices would work best to slow traffic and developed a plan for our neighborhood. In the fall of 2013, a public information meeting will be hosted by the city and then residents will have the opportunity to vote on whether or not to adopt the plan.  We must have 60 percent of those voting return a "Yes" vote in order to have the plan implemented. A link to the pdf of the plan is at the bottom of the page.

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

 

Does this plan close off any of our roads?

No. Traffic calming refers to reducing speed, not reducing cut-through traffic. No options for eliminating cut-through were ever under consideration, per city policy. These are public streets, and some are emergency access roads, so they cannot be closed down or have devices which could restrict access. Fire, police and EMS all had to approve the plan. However, reducing the speed at which cars travel could ultimately dissuade drivers from cutting through. 

 

Who developed this plan and who decided what goes where?
The plan we have was developed by the city, using the available solutions they have.  There were a limited number of tested and approved traffic calming devices  available.  The city does see a need for Traffic Calming based on traffic count data, and did communicate with our committee over the years and got our input, but ultimately depended on their engineers to develop the plan. Their recommendations are based on the data they gathered of traffic counts and traffic speed. In other words, the plan is completely data driven.


Why do we need Traffic Calming?

Thousands of cars cut through our neighborhood on a daily basis in an attempt to avoid congestion on other roads. Frequently these cars are traveling well over the speed limit. Our neighborhood does not have sidewalks, so pedestrians and bikes must share the road with these speeding cars.  Traffic Calming devices tend not only to slow cars physically, but also to remind drivers that the streets are residential. The traffic calming devices in this plan address the main streets where speeding and cut-through traffic represent the most immediate threat.

 

My street isn't really affected by cut-through. Why should I care?

This plan is a comprehensive neighborhood plan. If it is defeated, residents on the affected roads can apply to have traffic calming on their specific streets. However, the street-by-street approach does not necessarily take into account the impact implementing traffic calming on one street would have on another. By implementing the plan neighborhood-wide, we reduce the potential negative impact of a more piecemeal approach.

 

No one asked me what I wanted. Did they?

The Association has discussed the Traffic Calming project at every annual meeting since 2008, and devoted almost all of the 2009 annual meeting to traffic calming. We have also given updates in our newsletter as we had any developments to report. Residents were invited to join the traffic calming committee, or to send feedback to the committee. Contact information for every board member is listed on our website. We have done our best to be transparent and inclusive about the process, but again, the design of the plan was completely at the discretion of city engineers.

 

A device is in front of my house. Can't it be moved?

No. The plan is in its final state and has been approved by various city departments including fire, police and EMS. It has taken more than three years to gather data, design the plan and get it approved. We vote on the plan in its current form. If a device is in front of your house, it's because the city engineers believe that is the best place for it.

 

Can we just implement part of the plan?

No. It's all or nothing. If we vote no, we get nothing. Defeating this plan leaves our streets exactly as they are, while Austin grows. The Mopac Improvement Project will be starting as early as 2013 which is likely to drive even more cars to take side streets. Reminding these drivers that they are on residential streets and need to follow speed limit laws will be important. 

 

How does the HOA feel about the plan?

This project is funded by the city. We would like to see our tax dollars at work in our own neighborhood. If the vote does not pass, the funds will be applied to another project elsewhere. And although the plan is not perfect, we feel it is a great improvement over the current situation and preferable to taking no action at all.

 

Traffic Counts

 

Historical Speed _ Volume Data.pdf

These are all the counts the City did in Old Enfield in 2007 and 2009.


It is important to understand that traffic on our streets change dramatically based on what is happening on MoPAC and Enfield. All the experts, City and non-City, have consistently told us this over the years. It is a moving target.


Please note: This chart does not include the extra count OEHA did on 9/25/2007 for Windsor Road. We paid to have Windsor recounted because the 2007 Windsor number was abnormally low (1222) based on our experience. The recount showed 2125 cars total.

 

Old Enfield - Estimated Cut-Thru Traffic - Existing Conditions.pdf

 

Old Enfield Existing Counts.pdf

 

About Old Enfield Existing Counts data.

  • The first page is a chart summarizing the data.
  • It is an 8-day count at all our entry/exit points in the neighborhood, 13 locations in total. The ticker strips were placed as close to the intersection as possible.
    This provided us data on how many cars enter and exit the neighborhood so we could see cut-through verses resident traffic.
  • WEEKDAY (does not include Sat or Sun)
  • ADT means the Average Daily Traffic, the average total for the 24 hour period.
  • NB/EB means northbound/eastbound, SB/WB means southbound/eastbound.  For example, the first location was Hartford north of Enfield. This is the intersection of Hartford and Enfield. This location had an average of 920 cars going northbound and 560 cars going southbound.
  • AM Peak is the highest hourly volume (during the entire counting period) between 7-9am.
  • PM Peak is the highest hourly volume (during the entire counting period) between 4-6pm.
  • For example, for location #1 Hartford north of Enfield, the peak number of morning cars going northbound was 30. The peak number of morning cars going southbound was 46.
    Same location, the peak number of evening cars going northbound was 250. The peak number of evening cars going southbound was 54.
  • WEEKEND
    Actual volumes for Saturday and Sunday of the counting period. Not averages since we only had one Saturday and one Sunday during the counting period.

 

 

The Plan

 

The final traffic calming plan is here.

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