While it was not a good night for a lot of people I know, Austinites took a step towards multi-modal transportation with the passage of Proposition #1 by a vote of 56%. This was the first transportation bond to commit substantial funds to bicycle and pedestrian projects including completing the Lady Bird Lake Hike and Bike Trail loop, $14 million in sidewalk improvements, and millions for bike infrastructure.
The bond faced a late negative campaign from road warriors Jim Skaggs and Mike Levy who criticized the bond for spending money on alternatives to the automobile instead of more road capacity for cars. Thankfully, Austin voters took a more balanced approach seeing the future of our City is not exclusively about paving as much real estate as possible for cars.
The Austin American Statesman reports Mayor Lee Leffingwell indicating all the projects in the bond will be underway within 2 years with some beginning as soon as this spring. The City of Austin is also expected to come back with another bond proposal in 2012 which would include an urban rail proposal.