In an effort to improve access and reduce congestion downtown, Austin Transportation Department (ATD) has converted a one-way stretch of Fifth Street to two-way traffic. Reopened on August 23, Fifth Street now consists of two eastbound lanes and one westbound lane between Brazos Street and the I-35 Southbound Frontage Road. Previously, road users could only use the three-lane street to travel eastbound.
ATD anticipates that this change will reduce the congestion that occurs when Sixth Street is closed during entertainment hours by improving overall east- and westbound downtown travel times. The conversion involved installing new signals, adjusting signage, restriping lanes and more. In the lead-up to the conversion, ATD notified area stakeholders and invited them to a public open house meeting where staff heard and responded to stakeholder questions and concerns.