The Austin Transit Partnership released an updated design plan yesterday that spares a number of properties along Guadalupe and E. Riverside from condemnation. Nathan Bernier of KUT reports:
The new plans call for routing bus and bicycle lanes away from Guadalupe Street between 27th and 29th Streets. Northbound buses and bikes would be routed down Hemphill Park, one block to the east. Southbound buses and bikes would go down Nueces Street, one block to the west. Most of the Drag south of 27th Street would have a vehicle lane in each direction reserved exclusively for CapMetro buses.
The most politically significant property saved is Dirty Martin's, the 98-year-old hamburger joint that has become a mascot for Project Connect opponents. I'm told that Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan is a big fan; he memorably had lunch from Dirty's delivered to the House committee taking up the bill aimed at killing Project Connect last year.
The Legislature could very well still kill Project Connect, so anything that reduces that risk is a good thing. More substantively, reducing property acquisition reduces costs, which is also a good thing.