The Red Line Parkway Initiative Recognizes Eight Individuals for their Work on the Red Line Parkway

19 December, 2023

The Red Line Parkway Initiative recognizes eight individuals for their contributions toward completion of the 32+ mile Red Line Parkway in three areas of work: planning the future Parkway, funding construction of the Parkway, and building the Parkway as part of other new projects along the corridor. Each were presented with commemorative plaques for their contributions at the inaugural State of the Parkway in November held in East Austin.

Travis County Commissioner Brigid Shea was recognized for her instrumental role in providing funding for both Red Line Parkway planning and the Howard Lane Shared-Use Path. The latter $11MM construction project will connect several key destinations and neighborhoods, including CapMetro Rail Red Line Howard Station, McNeil High School, Northwest YMCA Austin, Milwood, and Wells Branch. The project also completes a portion of the Red Line Parkway in a challenging area of the corridor with minimal existing walk and bike connectivity.

Photo of RLPI Executive Director Tom Wald and Commissioner Brigid Shea

CapMetro planning staff Sharmila Mukherjee, Rose Lisska, and Jordan McGee were recognized for their roles in commencing the Red Line Trail Study. The Red Line Trail Study aims to identify a feasible and safe alignment for the Red Line Trail (and Parkway) based on identified constraints and opportunities. The study began in early 2023 and is anticipated to wrap up in summer 2024. Community engagement began this fall, and will continue this coming spring. The study is a pivotal next step toward the completion of the Red Line Parkway.

Photo of Rose Lisska, Tom Wald, and Jordan McGee

City of Austin Transportation & Public Works staff Mike Schofield and Nathan Wilkes, and Texas Department of Transportation Austin District staff Heather Ashley-Nguyen and Victor Vargas (formerly with TxDOT) were recognized for their roles in including car-free crossings for the Red Line Parkway at I-35 in the I-35 Capital Express Project. When the highway expansion project is completed, people will be able to walk or bike over the highway and its frontage road lanes without interacting with cars or trucks. In addition, potential caps over the highway would allow Parkway users to avoid much of the immediate noise, sight, and particulate pollution arising from the interstate corridor.

Photo of Tom Wald, Mike Schofield, and Nathan Wilkes

“Completing the 32+ mile Red Line Parkway is the result of countless individuals stepping up all along the regional corridor to help plan, fund, build, and activate the Parkway,” said Executive Director Tom Wald.

Over 60 people attended the State of the Parkway and heard remarks from several speakers, including Commissioner Brigid Shea and Cedar Park Mayor Jim Penniman-Morin, who presented his State of Cycling in Cedar Park.

The Red Line Parkway Initiative is a non-profit organization dedicated to building a vibrant trail and linear park along the CapMetro's Red Line, connecting Downtown Austin to Cedar Park and Leander. Our goal is to unite partners and communities to plan, fund, build, and activate dedicated spaces for cyclists and pedestrians along the Parkway. This Parkway will provide car-free transportation options that are accessible to ALL members of the community options while fighting the effects of climate change.

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