Approaching the Howard Station. Click on the image for an enlargement.
Commuter rail service on the Red Line from downtown Austin to Leander began in March 2010.
In the May 2010 issue of the Community Impact Newspaper, there was an article dated May 7, 2010, by Rob Heidrick about a study done to explore the feasibility of extending service from the Red Line to Round Rock, Pflugerville, and Georgetown.
The study, done as a fatal flaw analysis, was sponsored by the Texas Regional Mobility Authority and the City of Round Rock according to the article.
There was an online article entitled “Round Rock Rail study outlines challenges in planning new commuter line” by Rob Heidrick in the Community Impact Newspaper Round Rock\Pflugerville, April 28, 2010, about the feasibility study for rail transit extensions to Round Rock, Pflugerville, and Georgetown from the Red Line rail route in Austin. In this article, it was mentioned that Red Line fares cover only 6 percent of operating costs. It was also mentioned that fares on the proposed rail service were estimated to cover as much as 30 percent of operating costs, but this was described by the consultant according to the article as an ambitious goal. The later article by Rob Heidrick did not include this information about fares and operating costs.
The Howard station is the one closest to Pflugerville.
“Austin Texas gets new Mode of Transportation: Rail!” by Betty Sainz (in Go Articles.com) is an article about Red Line service.
A list of links to documents about the Round Rock rail study can be found at http://www.roundrocktexas.gov/commuterrail.
Item 3.B in the agenda for the Pflugerville City Council regular meeting on May 25, 2010, was “Presentation regarding the Commuter Rail Feasibility Study.” A video of the presentation is available here at the City pf Pflugerville website.
Some parts of the CAMPO 2035 Regional Transportation Plan that are relevant to Round Rock and Pflugerville were reviewed with the aid of maps in an article by Rob Heidrick in the May 2010 issue of the Community Impact Newspaper Round Rock|Pflugerville.
Criticism of the plan can be found in “Austin Region Transportation Plan: A blueprint for degrading quality of life” by Jim Skaggs.
The CAMPO plan will be considered for approval at a meeting on May 24.
Added note, May 24: The plan with amendments was approved by a vote of 17 to 2.
More about the May 24, 2010, meeting:
“Texas 45 Southwest Survives” by Ben Wear, Austin American-Statesman, May 25, 2010.