AUSTIN (KXAN) - It may seem like a colossal undertaking, but the Austin City Council has voted to look into putting a section of Interstate 35 underground.
Known as "cut and cap," engineers would dig underground, then cover the road.
And as for all of that newly cleared land on top of the tunnel? Plans include incorporating parks, restaurants and other mixed-use development on the "urban boulevard."
The vote Thursday gave tentative approval to the idea, allowing further research into the proposal.
If approved, the plan would could with an estimated $500 million price tag.
Architect Sinclair Black came up with the idea . He hopes it will unite the east and west sides of Austin that are separated by the highway.
"The plan is more about the city than about the road," Black said. "The idea is to reconnect east and west Austin, which has been brutally divided by the highway. Everybody knows that, and nobody knows what to do about it."
Black's plan would take eight lanes of traffic from 15th Street to Lady Bird Lake and move them underground. He says about 30 acres of land would be freed up for restaurants, parks, shops and more.
And although his plan would cost a very pretty penny, Black says the new development would generate an estimated $929 million in revenue.
"Two million square feet of restaurants on the creek, on the boulevard, so on and so forth," Black said of how the space could be used. "It's a really pretty attractive view of the future."
An armed robbery in South Austin set off a search for two men with guns early Friday morning.
Two school buses and a car crashed on eastbound Parmer Lane near Ranch Road 620 on Friday morning but there were no reports of injuries.
A local road project more than two decades in the making won't save drivers as much time as many had hoped.
The University of Texas Board of Regents adjourned Thursday without taking action on the job status of embattled UT President Bill Powers.
Longhorns coach Mack Brown talked with reporters Thursday for the first time since reports surfaced this week that he could be stepping down.
Patchy light rain is forecast in Central Texas Friday as an upper level disturbance moves across the state. Rainfall totals are expected to be very light, and showers will end by Friday night. Sunshine, but breezy and cool conditions are …