Black + Vernooy is proud to have been recognized for our work on Reconnect Austin with the 2018 Next Big Impact Award from the Urban Land Institute Austin.
The new award recognizes “an upcoming project, master planning effort, redevelopment, program, policy or ‘idea’ that will transform our industry and our community.”
Reconnect Austin proposes to lower the main lanes of I-35 and cover the highway with a cap, creating an active surface-level boulevard. The idea is that instead of simply building more lanes for cars – which research has shown to be ineffective in reducing traffic – the re-worked design could reconnect the urban grid, increase transportation options and free up for development the land that is currently under frontage roads.
That newly created land is estimated to provide an additional $10 billion in new property tax value, which would directly benefit state and local taxing jurisdictions. In addition to new tax base and traffic throughput, other benefits include new land for affordable housing adjacent to the region’s job center, improvements to air and water quality, and better connectivity with safe options for all road users.
For more information, check out the press release and video:
The Black + Vernooy team with Girard Kinney, of Kinney Architects, accepting the award