The Texas Department of Transportation is currently soliciting nominations for transportation enhancement projects to be funded with Federal matching funds. One of the proposed projects is a Hike and Bike Trail that would run along portions of the railroad right-of-way from East 12th Street near the Boggy Creek Greenbelt to North Lamar. This railroad right-of-way is owned by the Capitol Metropolitan Transportation Authority (CapMetro) and currently leases the tracks for freight rail.

Many communities across the country have constructed and are planning multi-use trails along active railroad rights-of-way. A recent Federal study (Rails-with-Trails: Best Practices Report, U.S. Department of Transportation, January 2001) reports that these rails-with-trails are successful and safe for trail users and railroad owners.

The Skyview Neighborhood would benefit from such a trail for pedestrians, bicyclists, recreational users, children, the elderly, and those with limited financial means.

The Skyview Neighborhood supports efforts by the City of Austin and interested citizens to develop a nomination package to be submitted to TXDOT in the current statewide competition for transportation enhancement funding. We also support pursuing discussions with CapMetro regarding use of their right-of-way, as long as a safe crossing at the intersection of Koenig and the railroad will be constructed due to traffic and high speeds; and that concerns of residents along Duval are adequately addressed.

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