A thriving Texas economy and continued population growth make Central Texas one of the most dynamic areas in the country. Along with the benefits come added traffic and the need for transportation solutions. One agency leading the charge to keep everyone moving is the Central Texas Mobility Authority (CTRMA).
This agency was charted in 2003 for the people of Williamson and Travis counties. CTRMA is led by Executive Director Mike Heiligenstein, a central Texas stalwart, who embraces a regional approach to solving complex problems. Heiligenstein spent 23 years in public service for the city of Round Rock and Williamson County. His transportation expertise is continually sought out. Beyond directing CTRMA he is the President of the International Bridge Tunnel & Turnpike Association, member of Advisory Council of Texas A & M Transportation Institute, and member of Texas Department of Transportation’s Technology Task Force.
CTRMA’s mission is to increase the quality of life and economic vitality of the region. Their goals are to offer multimodal transportation, decrease congestion while preserving the environment. Heiligenstein and the agency are partnering with a host of entities to pursue this goal.
Since its inception CTRMA has been on the forefront of innovation. CTRMA was responsible for the 183 A and us 290“Manor” Toll road projects. The CTRMA was one of the first to implement cashless tolls and continue to innovate through variable tolls that regulate traffic flow based on current conditions.
Traffic congestion is further addressed through HERO (Hiway Emergency Response Operators) who patrols local roadways to offer free roadside assistance. This project supported by the Capital Metropolitan Area Metropolitan Planning Organization alleviates start and stop conditions that lead to congestion.
Multi modal solutions have become a reality through the Mopac pedal and walk bridge and trails incorporated into their projects. These conduits connect people on foot and bike to existing trails and infrastructure.
Beyond toll roads CTRMA is leveraging current and future technology to make a difference today. Their collaboration with app developers Carma and Metropia have bore apps to address specific issues. The Carma app encourages carpooling and aims to fill the 900,000 seats that go unoccupied daily in the region. The Metropia App give commuters the ability to navigate traffic based on current road conditions. Fiber optic lines have been incorporated on the 183 project in anticipation of smart car technology that will allow car computers to communicate with the road.
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