The Hill Country Conservancy (HCC) and the City of Austin are working together to design and build the Violet Crown Trail (VCT), a regional trail system that will begin at Barton Springs Pool in Zilker Park and wind more than 30 miles south into Hays County. The VCT will connect neighborhoods with parks, pools, libraries, schools and shopping centers and create new terrain for hiking, running and pedaling.
The Urban Trails Program is actively desinging the portion of the VCT from Home Depot Blvd. to Mopac. A Preliminary Engineering Report (PER) was completed for this project in February 2015.
The recommended route from Home Depopt Blvd. connects to an existing trail systen around the Arbor Trails Development. Other elements of the recommended route include
Providing a connection to existing sidewalks on the east side of Mopac (near the Regions Bank, Taco Cabana and Whataburger)
Providing a connection under Mopac, south of Williamson Creek to the Randall's parking lot. The City of Austin is currently working with Randall's to establish a trail head at this location.
City of Austin staff and the design team sought out valuable information from neighbors and other stakeholders by using Speak up Austin. This on-line forum provide an opportunity to have an open and honest discussion about route choice, impact to surrounding neighbors and businesses, recommended improvements, and other preferences. The forum resulted in 114 responses and some great feedback for the team. City of Austin staff then altered the recommended route to take this feedback into consideration.
On January 13, 2015 City of Austin and Hilly Country Conservancy staff conducted the second public meeting on the VCT. This meeting focused on the recommended route as shown in the links above. Click here to view the meeting notes.
On July 30, 2014 the City of Austin and the HCC conducted the first of two Open Houses that will occur during the PER phase. The purpose of the Open House was to introduce alternative alignments proposed for Phase 2A-North of the trail, which extends from Home Depot Blvd to William Cannon between Mopac and Brush Country Drive (approximately 1.5 miles).
More than 120 people attended the Open House and visited stations displaying each of the four proposed alignments, and the overall proposed VCT trail system. A City or HCC representative was positioned at each station to describe rationale, feasibility, opportunities, constraints, and respond to any questions or concerns. Additionally, an online survey was made available on August 11th. After collecting 230 responses, the online survey is now closed. Staff members are currently analyzing the feedback we received and will create a recommendation based on environmental features, trees, cost, and neighborhood feedback.
Per the Urban Trail Master Planning process (adopted on September 25, 2014), the City of Austin is finalizing a contract and scope of work with an independent firm who will provide a preliminary analysis of wildlife, tree, and cultural impacts of the four proposed alternatives for the phase of the Violet Crown Trail from Home Depot Boulevard to the Arbor Trails development. The firm will also investigate a “no-build” alternative.
For questions regarding this project, please contact Nadia Barrera, Urban Trails Program Manager, at 512-974-7142 or via email.