Sign 1: RM2222, Airport Blvd, and I-35 NB
US 290 becomes RM2222 at I-35. The first sign you’ll see tells you what lane you want to be in. This is far more descriptive than most of the road signs in Austin already, but the logic is still flawed. Go up a little and the I-35 northbound ramp branches off, but that particular lane continues. The next sign comes up.
Sign 2: Airport Blvd
Oh snap! If you were in the middle lane and you weren’t paying attention, you would have missed your exit. The middle lane was clearly not an “Exit Only” lane. The left two lanes actually continue to RM2222 which after the interchange becomes a 4-lane city street called Koenig (pronounced KAY-nig) Lane. If you missed the Airport Blvd exit, you will have a helluva time getting back unless you pull a U-Turn when the road becomes undivided. An overhead view shows that there is a rail line that runs parallel to Airport Blvd and there’s no way to cross it until you get to a major street. Good job, guys!
Unmarked exit on MoPac
Every time I drive north on MoPac I pass this unmarked exit just south of US183. The exit only puts traffic on the frontage road, but the frontage road doesn’t intersect any other road until it passes US183 and gets to Loop 360. Both US183 and Loop 360 have dedicated marked exits so I’m not sure what this exit is for. The exit lane from MoPac becomes the left-most lane on the frontage road, which then becomes an on-ramp for US183 (for northbound traffic coming from Steck Avenue/Anderson Lane/Spicewood Springs Drive). Once on the on-ramp and flyover, the two left lanes are for US183 northbound and a single right lane (the on-ramp lane) becomes the US183 southbound exit lane.
I believe it would be in good intentions if this unmarked exit was marked as the US183 southbound exit from MoPac since it pretty much puts traffic into the US183 southbound exit lane on the flyover anyways. That way there isn’t a giant kerfuffle at the actual US183 exit (people just don’t understand how to maintain their speeds at that point).
Just recently read an article about Buc-ee’s in May/June 2013’s Texas Journey and just had a laugh about the image they used to headline the article. What was humorous about it is that unless they were depicting a scene from the early ’90s, the family in the photo clearly look like they’re from Austin. It’s not just the way they’re dressed and presented, but it’s the old Volvo that pinpoints it. The photographer could have used a family dressed in western clothes with a huge pick-up truck (to satisfy the Texas stereotype) or a family dressed in nice casual clothes and a newer car (which would satisfy the magazine stereotype), but they picked plaid/striped shirts and jeans (with folded-up cuffs) and an old Volvo (which satisfies the Austin stereotype). I thought the photo was more entertaining than the article!