In a recent Viewpoints editorial, it was brought up by the American-Statesman that the congestion in the Austin area will only increase and that the community needs a solution to solve it-particularly a technologically advanced solution.
Luckily, the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority is all about mobility solutions and they have built the 183A Toll road in Cedar Park and Leander as well as the U.S. 290 toll road between Austin and Manor. These toll roads have greatly improved the capacity of the old roads.
Mobility Authority is building a new project called the MoPac Express Lanes. These lanes will help to reduce congestion and better manage traffic flow. There is no way to eliminate congestion but it can be better managed with smarted road systems. Variable tolling rates will help to synchronize supply and demand in order to ensure that there is a more predictable flow of traffic.
Whenever they can Mobility Authority has integrated technology into their projects. Fiber lines will be embedded along the 183 South road so that one day it will be possible to communicate with the infrastructure to reduce accidents.
Mobility Authority has partnered up with Metropia to create an app that can provide current alternative routes for commuters. They are also working with Carma, a carpooling app, inn order to encourage drivers to share their cars and help to reduce congestion. Currently there are about 900,000 wasted seats every day where there can be carpoolers.
The Statesman has pointed out a big problem in the Austin community and that is congestion create by repetitive stopping and starting-a lot of the time caused by breakdowns and the new Highway Emergency Response Operator (HERO) program is helping to reduce that. Mobility Authority is very invested in getting the roads in better shape because after all, they use the roads, too.
Mike Heiligenstein, the Director of the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority, has been part of the team since 2003 and is a leader in toll road operations. He has helped to develop the 183A toll road and uses technology to improve traffic problems.
He served as a public official as a council member of Round Rock City and as Commissioner of Williamson County. He has also been involved in various infrastructure projects and was even a founding bard member of the Austin-San Antonio Corridor Council and also a member of the Envision Central Texas Project.
Follow Mike Heiligenstein on twitter.