TRAVIS COUNTY, Texas — Voters approved a way to pay for a new bridge in South Travis County almost eight years ago.
But after all this time, there's still no new bridge.
Viewer Elaine emailed KVUE asking, “Can you find out where this project is?”
For more than 90 years, a bridge on Old San Antonio Road has been keeping cars separated from the waters of Onion Creek. But while the community around it has grown, the bridge has not.
It's a narrow bridge on a two-lane road – so narrow that when someone is driving on it, people traveling the other way have to wait.
In 2011, Travis County voters approved a bond to pay for a new, wider bridge, one that would also be higher so it doesn't flood like the old one sometimes does.
So, where is it? Stuck in the red tape of government, according to officials.
A Travis County spokesman said 28 projects fell under that bond, and all but seven are done. The bond money, although approved in 2011, comes in over several years, which staggers the projects.
Travis County submitted the new bridge design to FEMA (the Federal Emergency Management Agency) in February 2018 because the federal agency has to make sure it won't impact the flood plain. But 17 months later, there is still no movement from FEMA.
So that means the old bridge – which is a little too short and a little too narrow – will continue to carry the big burden of moving traffic in that part of Travis County.
KVUE’s Mike Rush reached out to FEMA to find out the status of the application that's holding the project up. A spokesman said the agency wasn't able to get the information by Rush’s deadline.
Once FEMA does give the okay, the county said it's ready to break ground on the new bridge. Once it's finished, the old one will become a pedestrian bridge for walkers and bike riders.
If you have an issue with our roads, let KVUE's Mike Rush know about it. He'll try to get answers to see what, if anything, will be done to make improvements. Sent an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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