APD cracks down on intersection blockers: "Don't Block the Box" campaign begins Monday.

The city of Austin is hoping a new campaign will ease congestion downtown.

Starting Monday, police will be cracking down on drivers blocking intersections along the downtown business district.

If drivers could use one word to describe Austin traffic, it would be..

"Terrible, I mean there's so many occasions where I'm almost run over.

In an effort to ease congestion, APD is starting their "Don't Block the Box, meaning the intersection, effort.

Police say they're aiming to makes liver easier and promote some generosity.

"Whenyou enter that intersection and you block that intersection, that's just being discourteous to those other drivers of that cross traffic," said Patrick Ockletree, Assistant Chief, Austin Police Dept.

A problem that drivers and pedestrians say happens too often downtown.

"This is a prime intersection so I have seen this one back up," said Alecia Burdick, pedestrian and driver.

Uniformed officers will be along Cesar Chavez and if you block the box, expect a ticket.

Starting April 6th, cops will be on the intersections of Cesar Chavez and Guadalupe, Lavaca, Colorado Streets and Congress Avenue during peak hours.

Ockletree says they will patrol the areas from 6 to 9 am and 4 to 7 pm.

Officers will have radios in hand, to talk with any officers in patrol cars and in the traffic management center.

Some Austinites feel this effort would just help drivers, but pedestrians too.

"I think it keeps me safer crossing at a crosswalk or during certain times. Then as a driver you're more protected," said Burdick.

APD says after starting this program, each month they will look at statistics to see if the program is working. If it works, they hope to spread the message all over the Austin area.

"Our hope is that we can change those driving behaviors that interrupt the flow of traffic throughout the city," said Ockletree.

APD tells fox-7 that Cap Metro buses will not be exempt from this rule. They can be ticketed as well.

Cops will only be patrolling those intersections Monday through Friday.


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