Monday, March 11, 2024

$105.2 million Capital Construction Grant, I35 Cap and Stitch project, visit

AUSTIN, Texas – The City of Austin has been awarded a $105.2 million Capital Construction Grant as part of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Neighborhood Access and Equity Grant Program (NAE), funded by the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). The City will use this grant funding to construct a 5.3-acre freeway cap over I-35 between Cesar Chavez and Fourth Street as part of Our Future 35: Austin’s Cap and Stitch Program.

The City’s ‘Our Future 35’ initiative aims to construct caps and stitches, otherwise known as platforms or lids, over portions of I-35 in Central Austin being reconstructed as part of the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) Capital Express Central Project.

The City's cap and stitch project provides a once-in-a-generation opportunity to change the landscape of Central Austin by building public space and amenities that celebrate and connect all Austinites.

“A primary goal of pushing and pushing to get I-35 lowered was so that we could have the potential for not only reducing the divide it created and continues to perpetuate, but so that we might have caps and stitches that allow for far better connections,” Mayor Kirk Watson said. “This federal award will better enable Austin to realize that vision, and I’m really excited about the opportunities that lie ahead to work together to create a more complete city. And thank you to our Congressional delegation who worked to bring home this critical funding.”

The City applied for the grant in September and identified the freeway cap between Cesar Chavez Street and Fourth Street as a strong candidate project due to the enhanced connections it will provide residents of the East Cesar Chavez Neighborhood to downtown previously cut off by the original construction of I-35, including a potentially uninterrupted walking and biking corridor across I-35 at Third Street that requires no frontage road crossings.

“These are the first three blocks of what could eventually be additional benefits through additional capping along I-35 with help from UT, the City and other interested parties,” U.S. Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-Austin) said in a media release.

“Crossing I-35 on foot doesn’t have to feel like an uncomfortable game of Frogger,” Rep. Greg Casar (D-Austin) said. “We’re bringing federal dollars home to Austin, reconnecting East and West Austin, and creating dynamic spaces for all of our residents.”  

The City will contribute a $45 million local match to the project and will coordinate with TxDOT on the design and engineering of the cap structure and anticipates a robust public process to determine the design of amenities on top that will be constructed after the structure is built.

The City continues to explore funding and phasing strategies for other caps and stitches, including additional grants, philanthropy, and other sources.

To learn more about the Cap and Stitch project, visit

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