The San Antonio City Council awarded a $6.6 million contract to improve street and pedestrian safety in the South Texas Medical Center. The contract is the latest in a multi-phase collaboration with the Medical Center Alliance, which funds planning, design, and Right-Of-Way acquisition. The City will fund construction from the voter-approved 2012-2017 Bond Program.
“This project is recognition that the Medical Center is one of our region’s most valuable assets, and it has a return on investment that can be measured not just in economic but also profound human impact,” said District 8 Councilman Ron Nirenberg. “We are fortunate to have the collaborative leadership of the Medical Center Alliance and the South Texas Medical Foundation to help make the Medical Center safer for visitors, patients, and workers.”
The project will widen Hamilton Wolfe at the Babcock intersection, upgrade traffic signals, add 5,200 feet of six-foot sidewalks, and install a state-of-the-art crosswalk system. Construction is anticipated to begin next month and end in January 2015. Additional pedestrian safety improvements are being planned.
The South Texas Medical Center employs 26,000 workers and more than 5 million patients every year. Over the last several months, Councilman Nirenberg has been meeting with City staff and Medical Center leaders to address traffic and pedestrian safety issues. The City of San Antonio has responded with several measures, including lowering the speed limit on several streets, erecting new signs, and increasing patrols of the area. Since 2011, there have been 26 vehicle-pedestrian accidents in the Medical Center, including the June 24, 2013 accident that took the life of 33-year-old Dr. Patrick Lindner.
“We are taking aggressive action to ensure the safety of all who visit and work in the Medical Center,” Councilman Nirenberg said.