The diverging diamond: TxDOT extending MoPac in SW Austin

Bad news for Southwest Austin residents -- it's now your turn for MoPac construction woes. TxDOT says it will be extending the freeway through Slaughter Lane to La Crosse Avenue. It will also be making major changes to the intersections.

AUSTIN - Bad news for Southwest Austin residents -- it's now your turn for MoPac construction woes.

TxDOT said it will be extending the freeway underneath Slaughter Lane to La Crosse Avenue, two lanes in each direction.

"There are more homes,” said Diann Hodges with the TxDOT. “There are more businesses, people are working out in this area. And we want to make it easier for them to get home, get to work."

At Slaughter Lane's intersection, drivers will notice a major change -- a diverging diamond intersection.

What it means is that if you are driving north or southbound on the feeder, you have only two options -- turn left or right. You cannot go straight.

"That allows left-turning traffic to get through the intersection safer and faster,” said Hodges.

There's one at FM 1431 and I-35 in Round Rock.

Some residents said it is a problem.

“It’s just been a lot more confusing and a lot more riskier and the opportunity of getting confused, getting into the wrong lane,” said Vic Shuklah, a Round Rock resident.

But TxDOT said "Delays have been reduced by 50 percent. And we've seen an increase in traffic of 50 percent."

The department said this is not a toll project.

Other improvements include a pedestrian and bikeway next to the southbound lanes.

The whole project costs $53.5 M and is expected to finish in three years.

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