TxDOT to Hold Public Hearing on RR 12 Project Thursday, March 8, 2007
Proposed construction area

The Texas Department of Transportation will conduct a public hearing to discuss the proposed improvements to Ranch Road 12 from Ranch Road 32 to the San Marcos city limits.

Time: 6:30 PM
Location: Carroll Hall dining room at the San Marcos Baptist Academy, 2801 RR 12.

A public hearing for a proposal to widen Ranch Road 12 to four lanes, including turning lanes, shoulders, and other improvements will be held Thursday.

The public hearing will begin with an open house. During this time, members of the project team will be available to answer questions regarding the proposed project and the displays of the proposed improvements.  At 7:00, a technical presentation will be given followed by a public comment period.

The Austin American-Statesman has published a map indicating locations of fatal accidents for the last two years in Hays County. (Click here to view the map.)  According to the Austin American-Statesman, "Forty-two people died in 37 car crashes in the past two years. None of those wrecks happened on roads that county commissioners have proposed spending $153 million to improve. The most common accident cause was speeding."

According to the map, the one fatality that occurred on the stretch of road proposed for improvements was the result of an accident at the notoriously dangerous Junction intersection where 12 turns left and 32 ends. Many have wondered for years why a red light has not been installed at this location, including caution lights on 12/32 at the approach of the intersection.

According to TxDOT, the purpose of the proposed widening project is to increase mobility and safety within the project limits.  TxDOT said in a public notice of the meeting published in the Austin American-Statesman that RR 12 currently functions as a rural principal arterial, and mobility is impeded by narrow travel lanes with no shoulders. Vehicles turning onto interconnecting roads and driveways have to slow or stop in the travel lanes causing following vehicles to slow or stop.  TxDOT expects mobility and safety to continue to degrade as populations increase in the area.

The proposed solution involves additional travel lanes that would accommodate increases in traffic volume. Turn lanes and bays will provide areas for vehicles slowing or stopping before turning left or right when approaching an intersecting roadways. The proposed improvements consist of the addition of a travel lane in each direction, paved shoulders, turn lanes or bays and improvements to the intersection of RR 12 and RR 32.

TxDOT is requesting verbal or written comments regarding the proposed project either at the public hearing or in writing after the hearing. Comments must be received on or before Monday, March 19, 2007.  Written statements may be submitted to the Austin District Environmental Coordinator, Texas Department of Transportation, P.O. Box 15426, Austin, TX 78761-5426 at any time on or before Monday March 19, 2007.