Category Archives: Neighborhood Safety

Holiday Safety Tips

by Debby Thompson, WBNA President & WB Neighborhood Watch Coordinator

santa-sneaky-on-roof-colorWith the bustle of the holidays just around the corner, make sure you’re taking every precaution possible to keep your home and family safe and secure.  We usually see an increase in opportunistic crime this time of year; please remain vigilant.

Keep your blinds and drapes closed when away, even if only for a short period of time.

Keep your house well lit at night (backyard included).  A motion sensor activated light is an inexpensive deterrent.

Continue reading Holiday Safety Tips

Save the Date for National Night Out!

October 4th!  America’s Night Out Against Crime
Free Food • Great Company • Door Prizes!

NNO 2016Join your Wells Branch neighbors for our night out against crime, Tuesday, October 4, from 6:00-8:00pm at the gazebo at Katherine Fleischer Park. The WBNA will be serving up FREE hotdogs, sausage wraps, fruit & veggies, beans, hummus, sodas and chips. For dessert, we’ll have the Friends of the Library handing out Culver’s delicious frozen custard (while supplies last). And don’t forget the door prizes!

Guest Grillmaster Chris Carby of Branch BBQ will be manning the pit while distinguished guests will be on hand to visit with residents and answer questions (watch for updated list). Both children and adults will have the opportunity to talk with first responders, receive information on Neighborhood Watch and other programs available to residents, and tour the fire safety house and fire truck that ESD No. 2 will have onsite.

Come find out what’s going on in our community and discuss with local law enforcement officers and politicians what you can do to help reduce the opportunities for crimes to occur in our neighborhood.

aIMG_8749National Night Out’s purpose is to heighten crime and drug prevention awareness, generate support for and participation in local anti-crime efforts, build neighborhood spirit and strengthen our law enforcement-community partnership. Help send the message to criminals that Wells Branch is organized and fighting back.

Take a stand against crime. Turn on your porch light and come join your friends and neighbors at the park for food and fellowship. If you have a Neighborhood Watch group on your block (or even if you don’t) we’d like to encourage you to come eat dinner with us, listen to the speakers, and then return home to your street and gather with your neighbors over dessert to discuss how you can make your homes and our community safer.

We hope to see you there!

Traffic & Roads Meeting Update

Notes from July 27, 2016 Traffic & Roads Meeting with Pct. 2 Travis County Commissioner, Brigid Shea and TNR Engineering Division Manager, David Greear:

It was agreed that the top traffic priority for Wells Branch should be the completion of Grand Avenue.  Incomplete segments between Quick Hill Road and Crissom are due to be completed over the next few months; hopefully, by the end of the year.  This will still leave the section between Crissom and Bratton to be paved.  It was suggested that residents contact the owner of that property (parcel #379473) and encourage donation of right-of-way.  WB resident Daniel Barnekow has reached out to the owners and will keep us posted.

In order of priority:

  • TNR will conduct traffic studies on the following intersections beginning the second week of school.  If determined that changes are needed, it will take approximately 6-8 weeks for the county to implement them.
    • Sauls/Bratton Intersection: review for possible light
    • Sauls/Crissom Intersection: review for possible 3-way stop
    • Crissom/Kissman Intersection: review for possible 3-way stop
    • Grand Avenue/Bratton Intersection: review for possible 3-way stop
  • Sidewalk & Crosswalk review for children traveling from The Lake at Wells Branch to Joe Lee Johnson Elementary.  A Crosswalk at Brad/Jack’s Pond/Bratton has been requested in the past to accommodate westbound access to the dog park and eastbound access to the pond and trail.  With the elementary boundary change, it may be necessary to add a crosswalk at this location as installation of a sidewalk on the east side of Bratton from Brad up to the tunnel is not possible.  Children at the far end of Haley Hollow/Doria will have to travel into and through the park in order to cross to the school via the tunnel or take the sidewalk (beginning at tunnel) up to Long Vista to cross.  The WB MUD will be looking at possible ways to improve tunnel and sidewalk safety.
  • Timing of traffic light at Wells Branch Parkway/Wells Port: extending time for Wells Port traffic to cross WB Pkwy.
  • Signage/turn lane at eastbound WB Pkwy at I35: clarification of turn lanes and signage.
  • Traffic Study for Cadoz after the extension is completed: approximately 1 year out.
  • Concern over noise/traffic from new soccer fields.  Possible solution to include “No Parking Signs” on Cadoz (back from the stop sign and on Shoreline on either side of the Cadoz intersection and either side of the entrance to the soccer fields.  Ideal solution would be to not allow parking at all on north side of Shoreline from 1325 up to Quinley Drive.  This would allow greater visibility for traffic turning out from side streets onto Shoreline Drive.  Overflow parking from the soccer complex would have to be considered.  Perhaps an agreement with Shoreline Church and a crosswalk to the soccer complex?
  • Speed Bumps were once again requested.  Commissioner Shea is willing to pursue approval of speed bumps/humps/turtles with Travis County ESD #2.  The issue in the past had been that when then Commissioner Eckhardt proposed speed bumps to the Commissioners Court, all of the ESDs could not reach an agreement approving them.  Commissioner Shea is willing to ask if they could be permitted on an ESD by ESD basis, rather than requiring unified ESD approval.
  • Resident Dan Barnekow proposed decorative painting of crosswalks as the City of Austin has recently given approval to neighborhood designs.  Benefits include a greater visibility of crosswalks to traffic, attracts use by pedestrians (as opposed to jaywalking), and allows the community to create a neighborhood identity.  Commissioner Shea and David Greear said they would look into it and see if the County could implement that type of program.
  • Shoreline/1325:  We continue to work with authorities regarding additional turn lanes for the intersection of Shoreline and 1325.  We started with Travis County, were referred to TXDOT, who then sent us to the City of Austin.  The City now says it belongs back at the County level. Last word is that they’re “talking”.  We’ll keep you posted.

Travis County Traffic/Roads Meeting
with Pct. 2 Commissioner, Brigid Shea

WB Community Center • 2106 Klattenhoff

Pct. 2 Travis County Commissioner Brigid Shea has asked for a meeting with the residents of Wells Branch this coming Wednesday, July 27 at 7pm in the Community Center on Klattenhoff. She and David Greear, TNR Division Engineering Manager, will be on hand to discuss any and all traffic related questions that pertain to Wells Branch. While this meeting is important to all Wells Branch residents, it is essential that those of you living in Willow Run and those from other parts of Wells Branch whose children will be attending Athlos Academy or Joe Lee Johnson Elementary, attend this meeting. Come. Ask questions. Express your concerns over traffic flow when school opens this fall and ask how quickly the County can assess and remedy the situation should they deem it necessary.

Previous Meeting Update: June 27, the WBNA and MUD Safety Committee met with Travis County Commissioner Brigid Shea, and engineers from TNR Development Services: Christine Connor (road development) and Michael Hettenhausen (case manager for Travesia Subdivision). The purpose of the meeting was to discuss with Commissioner Shea the Cadoz extension and weigh the pros and cons: connectivity vs. increased traffic as some residents had expressed concern over the extension.

When asked if there was still an opportunity to get a crash gate installed on Cadoz between Willow Run and Travesia Subdivision, the development team said yes, but it would be difficult as the benefits of the alternative ingress/egress options far out weigh the traffic issues extension may cause. In order to balance traffic flow and give residents as many options as possible, everyone agreed that we need to focus on completion of Grand Avenue through to Bratton Lane as quickly as possible.

There is only one remaining parcel of land preventing the completion of Grand Avenue from Quick Hill Road all the way to I35. All other contributing parcels have been scheduled for development. Commissioner Shea and the engineering team felt that the best route would be to approach the owner of parcel #379473 (land not yet scheduled for development) and suggest they donate or yield right of way to Travis County NOW, before planned development so that they could begin the process. Benefits to the landowner would include not having to pay for road construction upon development, waiver of replatting fees, and increased property value due to easy access with completed (or near completion) roadway once they decide to sell or develop.

A group of WB residents plans to start working on the Grand Avenue issue in the next few weeks. Please note: Even if the property owners agreed tomorrow to turn over the land, we’re still at least two years out on possible punch through, more likely, 3-4 years. Planning for the budget cycle for 2016-2017 Travis County is near completion. Grand Avenue development would have to be included in the 2017-2018 Budget and most likely would depend on a road bond being passed.

Please put forth every effort to attend the upcoming meeting.

Pflugerville Firefighters Remind You to Get Ready for Severe Weather


Flooded road with carCentral Texas is known as a hotbed of flash floods, which are the #1 cause of weather-related deaths in the U.S. Most of these deaths occur when drivers try to drive through floodwaters, while others happen when pedestrians try to walk through or near flooded areas. Just six inches of rushing water can knock down an adult, and much less for a child.

Continue reading Turn Around, Don’t Drown!