WEST LAKE HILLS, Texas (KXAN) — The Texas Department of Transportation has begun improvements planned on the three-mile stretch of Bee Cave Road for west Austin drivers.
TxDOT plans to build a center turn lane between Redbud Trail and Walsh Tarlton Lane, turning the four-lane roadway into five lanes. Fayruz Benyousef uses Bee Cave Road through West Lake Hills daily to get her children to and from school.
“I’ve noticed the delay that seems to be happening on the road is getting more so particularly at key times,” said Benyousef. “The adrenaline is pretty high in the morning and the afternoons.”
Benyousef also says that traffic on the road has increased especially in the past year, and drivers are more impatient than ever. “You’ll see people cut people off, we just heard it right now actually passing by,” she said.
Benyousef says the turn lane will help traffic flow better and increase safety.
“The lack of a left turn option and a light that allows for those turning left to safely do that is a big part of the problem and when you have children in the car or just yourself that’s a really important issue,” said Benyousef.
Former West Lake Hills Mayor Dave Claunch agrees. He says that he heard from many residents concerned about the road.
“A lot of residents complain about the terrible traffic on Bee Cave Road and how dangerous it is, it’s hard to pull out onto the road sometimes, it’s hard to pull into businesses,” said Claunch. “Several friends and family members have been rear ended on this road myself included, because there’s no turn lane to protect traffic that’s turning left into a driveway or business.”
The $29 million improvement project will also add sidewalks and shoulders along the road as well. Closures for construction will be necessary, but TxDOT says they will work to schedule most after rush hour. Work is expected to be complete in summer of 2019.