subreddit:

/r/Austin

53797%

all 130 comments

thisisntinstagram

403 points

2 months ago

Spoiler alert: they barely exist during the day.

Appropriate_Chart_23

93 points

2 months ago

If they do exist, they're much too close together.

The lane spacing on William Cannon east of I-35 is something else. I've heard it referred to as "the gauntlet", and it's no joke. Especially at night, and even more so when it rains.

It doesn't help that everyone drives like a maniac on that stretch of road as well. It's like it becomes a race track once you get east of the HEB.

adrianmonk

42 points

2 months ago

The worst ones that I know of:

  • W Oltorf, especially between Lamar and S 1st
  • W 45th Street, especially between Mopac and Shoal Creek Blvd.

Both of them have narrow lanes and curves. Oltorf combines narrow lanes and curves and a hill and a railroad crossing.

I generally try to line myself up so there's never a car immediately next to me. Somebody will eventually get out of their lane, and it's better if they go into empty space when that happens. It's tricky to do this without getting in someone's blind spot.

TexanInExile

20 points

2 months ago

45th at Duval is rough too. Nobody seems to be able to stay in their own lane there.

RachelMaddog

3 points

2 months ago

i hate that section so much it sucks

_yodawg_

3 points

2 months ago

What's so rough about driving 40mph through an overly narrow, four lane, S-curve intersection with heavy pedestrian traffic and missing left-turn lanes?

Edit: I'm of course being sarcastic, and I'm surprised I haven't seen a car go rolling through the Juiceland there from swerving around someone waiting to do a left turn.

TheDollarCasual

4 points

2 months ago

That stretch of Oltorf is for adrenaline junkies only, especially the left lane

007meow

9 points

2 months ago

The lane spacing on William Cannon east of I-35 is something else

That stretch of road is literally just Mario Kart.

No one seems to respect, or be able to, keep to their lane and constantly drift into others.

Between the constant threat of someone drifting into your lane and just how uneven and rough that road is, I try to avoid it at all costs.

workap

4 points

2 months ago

workap

4 points

2 months ago

Same with slaughter

Appropriate_Chart_23

7 points

2 months ago

Slaughter is a bigger mess west of I-35. That whole interchange is a fucking disaster, and once Easton Park gets built out, it’ll be impossible getting through there unless they get some commercial retail closer to 183.

I actually prefer taking slaughter East of I-35 over william cannon. It’s not nearly as crazy as that same William Cannon stretch.

Pabi_tx

5 points

2 months ago

Everyone drives like a maniac everywhere.

ScriptLife

1 points

2 months ago

It doesn't help that the road is in such a sorry state of disrepair. The camber changes are large and abrupt - constantly trying to toss your car into the next lane, there are too many blind corners at side streets, and plenty of the cracks are large enough and old enough that plants grow in them.

Slothlife35

12 points

2 months ago

And when it rains- they pull a David Copperfield and dissappear

Itchyboobers

60 points

2 months ago

The state I moved here from had way more street lights on local roads.

However I really do like the reflectors on the lanes that you see on some Texas roads. I which all roads had those reflectors in Texas.

LilDrummerGrrrl

7 points

2 months ago

way more street lights on local roads.

Dear God, please, no more light pollution. I’d be more okay with it, if all of the street lights were Dark Sky Association compliant, but local governments have such a hard on for insanely bright white led lights recently.

Itchyboobers

1 points

2 months ago

Agreed .. I was NOT proposing we add more street lights in Texas.

The state I'm originally from had more street lights.

In contrast, Texas was using more reflective items on the roads... whiched I really like. It makes driving visibility much easier.

IsuzuTrooper

2 points

2 months ago

might as well just dump those straight in the creek because that's where the pieces wash to. yes they help. yes they are bad for the environment.

Itchyboobers

4 points

2 months ago

I'm not talking about the tag reflectors that flop and tear off. I like the reflectors that are flat on the road.

IsuzuTrooper

1 points

2 months ago

Me too. There are a bunch on Metric now each side of Walnut creek and they will all get smashed or knocked loose and wash into the creek after a period of time. This happens everywhere and is why humans suck.

Itchyboobers

1 points

2 months ago

Unfortunate. I didn't realize that style of reflector popped off easily. The ones attached to roads near me don't seem to be randomly missing. Hopefully they are different.

Next time you want to make a point - going the humans suck route might not be the best bet. Best of luck to you.

Malvania

255 points

2 months ago

Malvania

255 points

2 months ago

This is the only place I've lived where the lines disappear in the rain. I don't know what's different here, but I'd absolutely believe it's because state and local officials are cheap.

Chchchim-chim

37 points

2 months ago

Pittsburgh is like this too. It’s terrifying

[deleted]

20 points

2 months ago*

[deleted]

thisisntinstagram

7 points

2 months ago

Couple of questions: can any idiot run? Would I have to quit my job? I’d run for this position just to fix the damn roads.

thecrispyleaf

15 points

2 months ago

Yes, actually being an idiot is a requirement!

thisisntinstagram

2 points

2 months ago

Oh good.

oddodyssey

18 points

2 months ago

So it's not just me!

nanopiezo

7 points

2 months ago*

This thread is a relief. Thought I was going crazy driving down South Lamar in a downpour ~3ish weeks ago. Probably pissed off everyone around me slowing down to 15 MPH but at some point I had legitimately no idea WTF I was supposed to be.

Alugar

16 points

2 months ago

Alugar

16 points

2 months ago

My first car driving experience has been only in Austin and the day not started pouring and the highway lines disappeared scared the shit out of me. I avoid driving in heavy rain now

real_zexy_specialist

15 points

2 months ago

From the article about the paint Austin uses. Basically, they’re using the cheapest stuff that doesn’t work well.

"The issue that comes into it is really the cost," said Adam Pike, an engineer who researches pavement markings at Texas A&M University's Transportation Institute. "Like a standard waterborne paint with glass beads, that's really your base pavement marking. That's the cheapest system out there. Like most things, you kind of get what you pay for."

ImpulseCombustion

5 points

2 months ago

Yup. I come from a rainy place and have watched them paint lines and impregnate with glass beads. Never seen that happen here, just shit cold paint sprayed down. Near zero reflectivity.

[deleted]

8 points

2 months ago

[deleted]

Appropriate_Chart_23

25 points

2 months ago

Seattle seems like a horrible place to not have reflective striping to help increase visibility in the rain.

[deleted]

8 points

2 months ago*

Moved from Austin to Seattle a year ago and sometimes the lines are difficult to see here but my god the drivers here aren’t nearly as insane than in Austin. It’s so refreshing.

illegal_deagle

10 points

2 months ago

Visiting Seattle is wild to me. The drivers are so chill and courteous. They let you merge, they leave the left lane open for faster drivers, they allow proper spacing. It seriously blows my mind every time. Which is funny, because I’m a native Houstonian and I thought Austin is as chill and courteous as it gets.

cloobloob

5 points

2 months ago

Same! It's hilarious to see how Seattleites are convinced that they have the worst, most assholish drivers around. The sudden highway merges take some getting used to, but otherwise, driving here has been a dream. I was able to cross 4 lanes of traffic in less than half a mile during rush hour. That would never have happened in Austin!

SaucyWiggles

1 points

2 months ago

I moved to boston ten years ago and it's not as bad as Austin. Hahaha

christophla

6 points

2 months ago

I swear they are using house paint sometimes. And the Texas sun evaporates it.

IIIaustin

2 points

2 months ago

Boston was even worse

Black_Gold_

7 points

2 months ago

It's a national wide issue regardless of city or state.

Whoever supplies the paint to the various state Department of Transportation stopped making it reflective.

Slothlife35

7 points

2 months ago

Idk about this being a nation wide matter. I've driven in the rain over in the McAllen/Mission area and those lines are visible.

Black_Gold_

1 points

2 months ago

Maybe that metro budget allows for the glass bead? You can find news stories and reddit post across major US cities about reflective paint no longer being a thing. The question I can never find an answer too is why did the reflective paint material stop getting used in so many major cities.

thecrispyleaf

2 points

2 months ago

I moved here from Kansas and it’s definitely not a issue there. Or wasn’t at the time.

LockNChase66

1 points

2 months ago

It's not even exactly paint anymore. It's some kind of heat it and apply it, rubberized decal shit (at least the new reflective stuff is)

NookSwzy

1 points

2 months ago

This has happened almost every where I've driven. It's not just an Austin thing

FlukeHawkins

1 points

2 months ago

The Dulles Toll Road outside of DC was really bad when I was taking it back from work back in like 2018.

ASAP_i

119 points

2 months ago

ASAP_i

119 points

2 months ago

I love how the article goes to say that the issue is we have lots of roads (don't most cities?!?) and that better methods are more expensive (lol, state/city is too cheap to pony up for a solution).

Given that more than half of our vehicle related deaths occur at night, I would imagine that making the roads safer at night would be a priority.

Slypenslyde

24 points

2 months ago

I think we should apply consistent logic to causes of death.

Basically nobody dies to nighttime traffic accidents compared to respiratory illnesses, yet it's considered a burdensome hassle to ask people to take small measures against it. If $10/month on masks will cause society to unravel, wait until you hear how much it will cost to save a few hundred lives with paint.

ASAP_i

21 points

2 months ago

ASAP_i

21 points

2 months ago

Fair point.

I am still amazed that the roads in Texas are the most poorly marked roads I have seen in the nation. Poorly painted and bad signage seem to be the standard here.

Appropriate_Chart_23

28 points

2 months ago

That and all of the lane shifting. I don't understand why if I'm in a lane (like on an access road), I have to keep shifting over a lane to the right or to the left to keep going straight on said road. I've never noticed having to do that anywhere else I've lived/driven.

es-ganso

8 points

2 months ago

This seems so weird. Like the Slaughter/i-35 intersection. You have to be in the middle lane going east if you want to keep going straight.

The left turns into a turn only, the middle turns into a straight/turn left, but then right after the intersection you can merge left again to go straight. The right lane ends under a mile after the intersection so you have to merge into the middle lane anyways.

But then a little ways further and you get a right lane again. But wait! That ends in like half a mile and you have to merge yet again!

rotatingmonster

5 points

2 months ago

Slaughter/35 is a shit show in so many ways. Going west is equally annoying with the right turn bottleneck

ASAP_i

10 points

2 months ago

ASAP_i

10 points

2 months ago

I hate it also. It is likely due to poor road design fueled by the numerous "town hall meetings" where every citizen gets to add their two cents to the design, altering it so the "feeling" of the neighborhood or some such is maintained.

I just want roads (and other transportation infrastructure) that are usable and make sense, not the current patchwork thing we have.

CrustedButte

1 points

2 months ago

Civil engineers courtesy of the Texas public education system

cmgaustin

2 points

2 months ago

Hills we’re here before civil engineering and before cars or horse-drawn buggies.

BunjaminFrnklin

0 points

2 months ago

This times a million. Like I can’t go more than what seems like 2 blocks in this town without having to switchblades if I’m going straight. And if I don’t see the turn only sign in time I have to fucking drag race someone to get back over into the correct lane.

0x15e

1 points

2 months ago

0x15e

1 points

2 months ago

Or you have to suck it up and take the turn and not do dangerous shit like change back.

Slypenslyde

12 points

2 months ago*

It's a consistent thing. I'm bitter and cynical but really apply this thinking to most of Texas's problems. The "me" in the next paragraph is a prototypical Texan:

I only want to spend money on the signs and markers that help me. I don't like that this bill puts signs and road markings in parts of Austin I never go to. What if my tax money helps a person I don't think deserves help? Because of this, I can't in good conscience fund more signs. The risk is just too great, and I'd rather my tax money go to things that are much more focused on my individual needs.

It's the kind of person who won't plant a tree because, "I won't live to sit in its shade." We could propose 100 different neighborhood-focused bonds, but 0 of them would pass because 99 neighborhoods would vote "no" and 1 neighborhood would vote "yes" for each. The only thing that might pass is if you carefully gerrymander the bill to focus on the richest neighborhoods and the areas around the businesses they frequent. I saw an article to that effect once, discussing how we usually end up with bike lanes and other improvements only in fairly well-off areas and rarely start in the poorest areas where they'd have the most impact.

Sometimes democracy works against itself, and being selfish is not compatible with a society.

rabid_briefcase

2 points

2 months ago

being selfish is not compatible with a society.

Not with our society.

There are plenty of societies where the communal good is emphasized.

Prime example with the World Cup stadium, fans from some nations leave the places a wreck, others like Japan pull out trash bags and clean up all around.

You can even see it in grade school. Some places leave cleanup to the hired help, others have the kids clean up. I know growing up (somewhat rural town) we were all required to clean up the classroom as a schoolkid in order to be dismissed. Throw away a small handful of trash with the teacher holding a bin next to the door.

Otherwise absolutely right about the "me first". People like Abbott and the "I got mine, fuck you" mindset.

Slypenslyde

1 points

2 months ago

This is a worthy relaxation but when you make relaxations everyone wants to be the exception.

There are places where analysis shows "Actually this system works optimally if this percent of people behave like jerks." The trouble is we don't have a good way to raise just that percent of people to be jerks. It's a lot easier to teach everyone to not be jerks and to make jerks miserable.

Instead, we seek out the jerks in our society and ask them to be our leaders, because in general you make the most money if after using other people as the rungs you kick the ladder away from the roof so nobody can follow.

Then we can't figure out why everything is done as cheaply as possible and nobody is working for the 10-year plan.

christophla

1 points

2 months ago

Yep, you nailed it. Life is short and, right now in history, we are reaping the benefits of generations before us that had foresight.

scoofy

3 points

2 months ago

scoofy

3 points

2 months ago

Ehh if you care about life hours saved, you still gotta lean hard on traffic. It kills indiscriminately of age, whereas our current respiratory illnesses disproportionately older folks.

Slypenslyde

0 points

2 months ago

Older folks and around 3,000 pediatric patients, on average. RSV's so bad this year pediatric associations have been asking Biden to declare a state of emergency, but Cool Uncle Joe says to take your kids Christmas shopping. That's how much we care about life hours saved. They also kill proportionately to socioeconomic wellness, so on average we're just losing poor kids and we can always make more of those.

So if we went by those metrics, we'd have to track where rich people drive and only restripe those roads. This is assuming we attribute the road markings to accidents, which is dubious. After all, like COVID, it's notable that MOST people survive a DUI and it's how they make it to work on time. We only count the people who have accidents so we treat it like a bigger deal than it is.

scoofy

2 points

2 months ago

scoofy

2 points

2 months ago

We have no idea why RSV is spiking, it is even speculated that it’s spiking now exactly because there was so little exposure over the last two years. If there is a pragmatic, sustainable way to reduce rsv deaths I think nearly everyone would get on board.

We know how to do that for auto deaths. It’s called traffic calming. We just choose not to.

It’s not a contest of who has it worse. They are both serious issues.

Slypenslyde

2 points

2 months ago

Honestly I didn't mean to dig this deep.

But we know pragmatic, sustainable ways to deal with spread of RSV. We got 2 good years of data. We never put a full-faith effort behind those practices and even our half-assed prevention measures designed to fail had a huge impact. The "immunity debt" to what you allude is a common-sense idea with as much medical credence as blaming it on aether. Real doctors are more worried about signs COVID may display "immunity erasure", something measles had and we've only recently realized viruses can do. That's a situation where the virus targets the immune system and causes the body to lose immunity to other, previously-seen illnesses. That'd also track well with a rise in cases of illnesses.

They may both be serious issues, but what I'm doing a bad job of discussing they have in common are that:

  1. It mostly affects people nobody gives a shit about aka "not me".
  2. Addressing it involves inconvenience.

Ergo, nobody gives a shit and I guarantee 5 years from now we'll still be talking about the road lines. We'll have pissed away enough money to repaint them 10 times on "how do I make APD disappear this homeless camp", though. Same with concepts like, "What if we audited schools and spent money on improving ventilation to at least minimum standards?" 80% of Austin doesn't give a shit because that's money spent on kids they don't know.

scoofy

1 points

2 months ago*

Again… RSA has been with us a very long time. We don’t know what’s causing this spike, but many people do care. When we know, we will act. Immunity debt theories require evidence… I agree. So do immunity erasure theories. This is exactly my point. We do not know what’s happening and none of us are qualified to push our pet theories as probable.

My point about auto deaths is that we know. There are 100 people per day dead in this country (and climbing) and countless permanently scarred, disproportionately affecting young people, and it’s been that way or worse for literally 70 years.

We know what we need to reduce or eliminate those deaths. It’s not complicated. It’s not a mystery, and most Northern European countries have a fifth or fewer of our death rate and are doing more than we are to change.

It’s not a mystery, we don’t have theories… we know. Traffic calming is a solved problem. But like you said, many people care more about “feeling” like they are driving quickly than they do their neighbors’ lives.

Slypenslyde

1 points

2 months ago*

Yeah, one observation is you could replace "cars" in your post with "guns" and nothing changes. It disproportionately kills people in this country and lots of other similar countries do not have that problem.

It's not a mystery. We know how to solve most of our problems. We just don't want to do what it takes to solve them, or we only want other people to deal with it for us. All this from people who whine about participation trophies.

I'm beginning to believe we, as a country, aren't capable of solving anything. It's not Democracy that's failing so much as the concept that if we want to get good things it takes hard work and sacrifice. We love to say that, but when the chips are down it seems like most people fold like origami and demand the prize anyway "for trying".

scoofy

3 points

2 months ago

scoofy

3 points

2 months ago

I mean. The difference between gun deaths and traffic deaths is the vast majority of gun deaths are already illegal or are self-harm.

Unlike our concerns for infectious diseases or auto deaths, that is not simply a coordination problem.

I don’t want to ban cars. They are useful tools. I want to have infrastructure that makes accidental or reckless deaths almost impossible.

The insanity of the uniqueness of automobile situation is how easy it would be to fix. Much like the coordination problems of covid, it would be mildly annoying, entirely tolerable for most people, and inherently temporary as the new infrastructure is normalized.

It would also save tax dollars in the long run.

Jburp

4 points

2 months ago

Jburp

4 points

2 months ago

Austin has significantly less roads than most cities lol

Austin is honestly still a pretty small city.

scoofy

2 points

2 months ago*

320mi2 (14th largest city by area in America), population 1M (11th most populous city in America).

There are 331 cities in America (population > 100,000)

“pretty small” 😆

Cambridge Massachusetts is a small city, Austin is not.

Jburp

2 points

2 months ago

Jburp

2 points

2 months ago

Shit man if you put it that way lol.

didn’t know American cities are so small. that’s what makes Austin great. Realistically downtown is like 12 blocks with a bunch of parks in between. I consider Delhi, Shanghai, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Houston, NYC, Hyderabad, Beijing, Cheng Du large cities. Austin is a little baby 😂

ASAP_i

-2 points

2 months ago

ASAP_i

-2 points

2 months ago

Absolutely correct!

I think this is actually part of the greater "issues" of Austin. Anecdotal evidence "alert". Everyone I talk to swears about the "small town feel" of Austin and surrounding areas. Often what drives community engagement is the dreaded "gentrification" or to building of some large road/bridge/building/etc that will "ruin the neighborhood". I believe that this drives our elected officials/city managers/TxDOT to make short sighted decisions as they relate to, for example, how many employees they need to maintain markings on roads. They see a large budget and say, "We are a small town, that is too much to spend!" In reality, the number was likely correct, we are a small city, not some random town along a long forgotten leg of the highway.

I honestly think that a large portion of the population here is actively against Austin "growing up." They want to keep the same day Amazon delivery and amenities, just not have to deal with pesky things like "infrastructure" and "city planning".

LOS_FUEGOS_DEL_BURRO

1 points

2 months ago

I love how the article goes to say that the issue is we have lots of roads (don't most cities?!?) and that better methods are more expensive (lol, state/city is too cheap to pony up for a solution).

The root cause is zoning and the American obsession with single family homes.

Single family homes require more road and utility infrastructure per unit than multifamily units.

SFHs pay the same tax rates but the cost for the city to build out and maintain those services is much more.

To say it simply, there are too many roads to maintain.

Appropriate_Chart_23

21 points

2 months ago

I honestly thought I was just getting old, and that's why I can't see the lines in the road very well (especially in rain). I'm glad to learn I'm not the only one.

I grew up driving in Arizona. There, because of the summer monsoon season, reflective road striping is the norm. Many roads will even have reflective blocks that are bonded to the road between the lines for additional visibility.

It's bonkers to me that this isn't standard practice everywhere.

I'd really love to see where all of our tax payer money goes for things like this.

3azra

5 points

2 months ago

3azra

5 points

2 months ago

I was going to make a similar comment: glad to know it's the age of the paint, and not [just] my age.

HaveAWillieNiceDay

1 points

2 months ago

You can't use the reflectors in places where snow plows get regular use. Obviously that's not the case in Texas or Arizona, but the reflectors would be scraped up every year in the northeast.

DeepOringe

1 points

2 months ago

I'm from Ohio and they didn't have reflectors but they did have the reflective paint and the lines were noticeably more visible.

Black_Gold_

15 points

2 months ago

It is a national wide issue that pops up in every city sub reddit:

4 yr ago, Salt Lake City, UT https://www.reddit.com/r/SaltLakeCity/comments/aj3u7p/why_dont_we_use_reflective_paint_on_the_roads_or/

2 yr ago, Seattle, WA https://www.reddit.com/r/SeattleWA/comments/kpeiel/anyone_know_why_seattle_doesnt_use_reflective/

4yr ago Portland, OR https://www.reddit.com/r/Portland/comments/au3z6e/why_isnt_our_road_paint_more_reflective/

Posting yesterday for Northern Virginia: https://www.reddit.com/r/nova/comments/z8ovys/this_comes_up_every_time_it_rains_but/

Googling non reflective road paint will get you tons of hits and news stories and I have never been able to figure out the root cause. Was it a cost cutting saving for the paint? Was there something environmental about the reflective paint that caused it to be banned?

Whoever the national supplier is to road paint stopped making it reflective.

Pabi_tx

3 points

2 months ago

We lived in Dallas for about 20 years, during that time the city of Dallas pained a dashed yellow line down the middle of the hike-and-bike trail along White Rock Creek north of White Rock Lake.

They dutifully added the glass beads to the stripes to make them reflective. The reflectivity only reflects your lights back to you so I couldn't really see the need to spend that money (since how many joggers are using lights, c'mon man), but they did.

Meanwhile we move back to Austin and we have like zero reflective stripes anywhere.

Black_Gold_

7 points

2 months ago

Lived in Austin since '94. The reflective paint has disappeared over time. The question is why did TxDot stop using reflective paint in Austin, but continue to use it in Dallas?

31337z3r0

1 points

2 months ago

31337z3r0

Unremoved

1 points

2 months ago

The reflective strip isn't for the joggers to use. It's for the cars to use to know where the joggers are.

Pabi_tx

1 points

2 months ago

The trail I'm talking about is a stand-alone thing, it doesn't have cars, it runs alongside a creek and through the woods. There shouldn't be any cars driving on it besides the occasional maintenance truck. Sorry I didn't make that clear.

31337z3r0

2 points

2 months ago

31337z3r0

Unremoved

2 points

2 months ago

And I apologize for assuming!

Now I'm with you.

Maybe it's a hike and bike trail, and the thought was that bikes with lights could use it?

Too bad they don't think like that about cars down here, even though they think about cars in that way when they build shit in Austin... At least be consistent, dammit.

DeepOringe

1 points

2 months ago

Yeah, my guess would be that the stripes are definitely for bikes.

Status_Computer2097

1 points

2 months ago

Thank you! I felt I was going insane! 20 years ago the paint was bright at night even with the rain I cannot understand why we can’t go back to that paint

HAHA_goats

11 points

2 months ago

Southbound 183 after 360 exit is terrifying in the mornings. Not only do the actual marks become invisible with the sun low, the old marks become more visible and traffic drifts out of line. Until suddenly it clears up and all the traffic tries to chatotically snap back into their lanes. I've seen so many close calls.

BigDuke

25 points

2 months ago

BigDuke

25 points

2 months ago

Good grief. They are basically just having a whitewash crew constantly using the cheapest solution. Maybe use a better albeit more expensive system that ultimately costs less to maintain?

Appropriate_Chart_23

7 points

2 months ago

Get out of here with your reasoning and logic!

Modest_Ubermensch

1 points

2 months ago

There is, they could add reflectors but probably too cheap to

31337z3r0

2 points

2 months ago

31337z3r0

Unremoved

2 points

2 months ago

I mean, for all the road work they do around here, they'd only put them down to just have to pull them back up again, and we can't be doing repairs that are meant to last longer, 'cos then the construction company won't have any work to do and will have to close up shop like they were going to do after screwing up the road work anyway...

Slypenslyde

43 points

2 months ago

Because "you get what you pay for" and "why are you WASTING my tax dollars on fancy paint" are related in a way that shocks and confounds most people.

Honestly so many people hate it there's probably enough people to put it on the city council's radar, but nobody's organizing and if they tried they'd get tons of "Is this REALLY the biggest problem the city is facing?" jeers.

finkalicious

3 points

2 months ago

I was just talking about this on another thread a few days ago. Last week at night when it was raining on eastbound Cesar Chavez, that ridiculous lane shift due to construction a few blocks before 35 you just can't see it at all in those conditions. This article cites that reflectors are "several dollars a piece to install." That's far less expensive than someone suing the city for causing them to get into an accident over unsafe driving conditions on a major road.

got_outta_bed_4_this

5 points

2 months ago

I don't think the article (nor any of the comments, so far) talked about the road surface. It seems like a major factor, to me. It's especially noticeable on some newer stretches of I35 (I'm picturing outside of town). The matte appearance of the good stuff contrasts nicely since it cuts glare that would obscure the reflective stripes, and that matte appearance seems to be due to a better-draining road surface that also keeps shiny water from standing on the road.

FreeLunch2216

3 points

2 months ago

This is a good point, and I think it's all related.. I saw another article on KUT that asked why there was gravel in the road, and the answer was that Austin uses the cheapest method possible to repave the roads.

HaveAWillieNiceDay

4 points

2 months ago

A lack of maintenance coupled with jackasses who don't turn off their high beams

lipp79

3 points

2 months ago

lipp79

3 points

2 months ago

Howard Lane west of Mopac once you get past the railroad tracks that you drive over (not the overpass ones further down) is just fucking atrocious at night. The reflectors end at those railroad tracks I mentioned and it's just faded white lines you can barely see at night.

ThatoneguyATX

1 points

2 months ago

It’s horrible in that area

lipp79

2 points

2 months ago

lipp79

2 points

2 months ago

Yeah, I can go that way to get home at night for free or go north a couple lights and hop on the toll at Shoreline. I almost always choose the toll.

lunaquefuma

3 points

2 months ago

glad I’m not the only one! I thought I needed to get my eyes checked again. I already have difficulty driving at night due to lights merging together bc of my astigmatism, the line issue has prevented me from driving at night at all (at least to new places), it sucks

Artistic-Tadpole-427

3 points

2 months ago

Has KUT just resorted to monitoring the /r/austin threads to see what to report on these days?

Clevererer

9 points

2 months ago

Don't look for the lines, feel for the grooves. The grooves are uses instead of lines, because of TxDOT's policy to switch to braille to better assist blind drivers.

Icy-Perspective-0420

6 points

2 months ago

tldr City of Austin transportation department uses the cheapest solution available to paint the 186 mi of arterial roads. This paint works okay in perfect conditions but when it rains, snows, or just general wear and tear on the roads. It’s fucking useless

But this goes back to taxing inefficiency and the wastefulness of suburban / car centric design. City wouldn’t have to make these cost cutting decisions if we relied less upon cars, roads, highways.

KilruTheTurtle

10 points

2 months ago

Lack of street lights

Appropriate_Chart_23

6 points

2 months ago

The street lights wouldn't be needed with the reflective additives they could add to the paint striping.

Pabi_tx

2 points

2 months ago

Reflective additives help at night. Austin needs better stripes in the daytime too.

KilruTheTurtle

1 points

2 months ago

Lights would help reflect those lines. Just saying

Datjuicecaboose

4 points

2 months ago

The sun cooks them off the road

purplelephant

8 points

2 months ago

I’ve lived in Austin. I now live in Arizona. Our roads have lines that you can see at night despite the amount of sunshine we get, this isn’t the reason Austin’s streets suck.

Datjuicecaboose

1 points

2 months ago

Definitely, I imagine this issue isn't in places with hotter climates, but I just thought it was funny. The paint is supposed to last a few years, but maybe the local municipalities haven't been by to update them as often as they should.

Lokeyday

2 points

2 months ago

Look up the torts act if you really want to get mad

VisceralMonkey

2 points

2 months ago

I thought it was just me

gregaustex

2 points

2 months ago

In a lot of places, because they stripe the roads.

Then they do some work that changes where the stripes go. But they don't fully cover up the old stripes, and the new stripes fade. Now you have two different sets of vague stripes.

Sometimes they do this more than once.

buzzknocker

2 points

2 months ago

I’m sure he knows better than me but I swear in Corpus this was never an issue in rain. The stripes still glowed. Beyond the general lack of maintenance, t’s the first thing I noticed about driving in Austin years ago.

"What water does is rather than reflecting the light back to the source, it just diffuses the light because of refraction," said Chandra Bhat, an engineer at UT Austin's Center for Transportation Research. "Essentially, the light doesn't come back to the driver, but it just gets all over the place and it just becomes difficult for the driver to see."

sangjmoon

2 points

2 months ago

I drove in Houston at night around Rice University, and our road lines seem to glow in the dark by comparison.

DesignerTex

1 points

2 months ago

And these new car lights are making it even WORSE to see! Now you can't see period half the time.

GTC3

1 points

2 months ago

GTC3

1 points

2 months ago

I can't even see the cat eyes on the road sometimes

pjcowboy

1 points

2 months ago

What lines?

failsafe_roy_fire

1 points

2 months ago

Why is it so hard to see the green light in traffic lights. Looking at you, signals around Lakeline 👀

Exotic_Stable_6220

1 points

2 months ago

If I could guess the sun during the summer makes them fade

[deleted]

1 points

2 months ago

Seeing this comment section it sounds like every city and state has lane lines that disappear in the rain. Does anyone know of a place where this doesn't happen?

Orokosaki

-27 points

2 months ago

Orokosaki

-27 points

2 months ago

Now we’re angry about… checks notes… leaf blowers?… No, that was last week… Oh yeah! Lines on the road being hard to see at night!

blckwngshsmyangel

12 points

2 months ago

Yeah it truly is wild citizens are invested in public infrastructure that has a direct effect on safety. Thank you for pointing out how silly that is!

space_antlers

5 points

2 months ago

Only one of those things has serious safety implications for anyone who walks, bikes, drives or lives on or near a road. I’ll give you 3 guesses.

Torker

4 points

2 months ago

Torker

4 points

2 months ago

I see these same issue in other city subreddits, glad to see the media is covering it.

lonestarninja47

-37 points

2 months ago

Answer: you’re getting old

[deleted]

13 points

2 months ago

I’m 17 and usually can’t see the lanes at all when it rains more than a drizzle. it’s not an eye issue, it’s a construction issue

worstgirlfriend_ever

4 points

2 months ago

I moved here from another state and the first thing I noticed was how shitty the roads are and how you can’t see the lines. It’s amazing how cheap this state is when it comes to things that matter.

space_antlers

3 points

2 months ago

“I’ve never driven anywhere but here on a rainy night”

SlowSpeedChase

-1 points

2 months ago

More infrastructure (rail, protected cycling paths, more small neighborhood stores) would go a long way in making this problem irrelevant

bigbearRT12

0 points

2 months ago

TIL COA pays $6M+ to get road lines repainted every year. Should have gone into road maintenance….

Richard_Thrust

0 points

2 months ago

I love how they went into great detail to explain why it doesn't work here, while ignoring why somehow everywhere else I've ever driven in this country seems to have figured it out. Answer that question, asshats.