"...(Disclaimers: We, not Capital Metro, came up with the station locations shown here; though they seem common sensical options to us, the current planning phase of light rail is addressing this question and won't be completed for a while. And the data behind these maps is from the city's last comprehensive city-wide land use study, which is several years old.)..."
"...Hybrid Land Development Code: The proposed CodeNEXT is a combination of transect (form-based) and non-transect (use-based) zones. Together they provide different degrees and methods of control..."
"...Eckstein admits that the county and its delegation walked into the session with "a very ambitious agenda of land-use legislation" for unincorporated areas. That's a particularly pressing issue for Travis County, which he called "unique because so much of our land mass is unincorporated..."
"...One of Austin Rep. Valinda Bolton's major environmental goals this session was to give counties some greater land-use controls; currently, when compared with cities, they have almost none..."
"...That's the ratio of Spanish scripted pages to English scripted pages held within the mass of CodeNEXT documents that are accessible today by the public. In a February op-ed in the Statesman, Mayor Steve Adler wrote of the current land use code: "It's a mess, but we can fix it if we work together." But the current code is only available in English...."
"...Curtin implies that increased density will result in "a type of insanity large cities breed." Actually, recent studies like one directed by Robert Putnam of Harvard University indicate that the isolated, class-segregated suburban lifestyles of most Americans are directly responsible for the high levels of mental illness and depression found in our society today. What the 90% of Austinites who are not members of the cottage hun aristocracy need to know is that "preserving Austin's older neignborhoods" is simply a euphemism for keeping out students, minorities, poor people, and – for that matter – anyone who thinks differently from them at all costs. The land-use code is the tool which allows them to accomplish this goal..."
"...Rep. Mike Krusee, R-Round Rock, chair of the House Transportation Committee, who wrote the 2001 RMA Act, has hit some potholes trying to fix its problems -- largely because Krusee's bills were written to address our specific needs, and other parts of the state want their yet-to-be-born RMAs to do bigger and better things than build a single toll road..."
"...• From See to See: Item 32, sponsored by CM Ora Houston, the mayor, and three other members (i.e., needing only one more domino) would initiate staff research to extend "Capitol View Corridor" protections to areas of East Austin. The apparent theory is that there is no sentimental Westside notion so dubiously nostalgic that it can't cross I-35, for reasons of "equity." You might think that Travis County's courthouse conundrum, and the city's bank-busting difficulties over the Waller Creek Tunnel project – both due in part to existing "View Corridor" restrictions – might make folks hesitate to prevent tall buildings in the urban core..."
"...In a break from its all-Bradley, all-the-time agendas of late, the council turns its attention this week to the Eastside, where there are two percolating land-use issues figuring into the neighborhood's vision of itself. More portentous of the two is a set of items regarding the future of the on-again-off-again Bennett tract..."
"...But were it entirely a democracy, the commission's vote, and the inevitable concurrence of the City Council, would mark the end of the road for Tom Terkel, Cencor Realty, Texas MHMR, Randall's, and Act III, and their urban-oasis strip mall between 45th, Lamar, and Guadalupe. In the real world, because the Triangle is state-owned land, the city's decision is subject to review and "modification" by an ad hoc board dominated by state officials...."
"...One year ago, Austin embarked on a complex experiment in populist urban planning known as "VMU." That's "vertical mixed-use," a new zoning tool to advance the broader City Council policy of promoting dense, more sustainable growth. A brief refresher: To qualify for VMU incentives (more units to sell or rent, less required parking, etc.), a development team must stack several stories of housing atop shops, cafes, and small offices and follow the city's design standards for good urban form and streetscapes..."
"...Turning off FM 1325 onto tattered Northridge Acres Drive is like rolling into the Twilight Zone. The foul scent of sewage permeating Kenneth Snyder's house and the green stagnant water in the drainage ditch parallel to his yard are dramatically out of sync with the choice real estate surrounding the displaced subdivision he calls home..."
"...While opinion leaders of the pre-Watson era threw fits and wrung hands over downtown, real people quietly filled up Austin's famously empty skyscrapers and noisily returned the Warehouse District to its historic roots as Austin's party-and-vice quarter. These developments are not unrelated, says Stacy..."
"...Contentious plans are taking shape this week as to how the city of Austin may use approximately 2,800 acres of undeveloped land owned by Austin Energy near the village of Webber-ville, about 15 miles to the east. Meanwhile, some of Webberville's residents and elected officials have been shaping their hands into fists and shaking them in the direction of Austin City Hall, frustrated by the city's accelerating progress toward something it said less than a year ago it had no plans to do: develop the land into an industrial site..."
"...Back in the day -- to be precise, back in 1994 when the city first formed the Citizens Planning Committee, whose report is the Magna Carta of Austin's neighborhood ascendancy -- we still considered "planning" to be about land use and related issues. After the city had failed to implement Austin Tomorrow (the city's now-25-year-old comprehensive plan) and then failed to replace it with the laborious and ill-starred Austin Plan, a Neighborhood-Based Solution looked like the only way to do real planning that captured local values and could resolve seemingly intractable developer vs..."
"...This is simply too much of a good thing too haphazardly strung together. It could almost certainly use some, you'll pardon the pun, conservative trimming..."
"...(This review is re-published from the March 17, 1995 Chronicle issue when Lotto Land debuted duing the SXSW Film Festival.) A missing $27 million lottery ticket is the linchpin for this warm, informed, and knowing look at two couples living in a working-class Brooklyn neighborhood. The drug use and bursts of violence that one expects of Brooklyn sagas is dispensed with early on so that writer-director John Rubino can get about the relevant business of his story..."
"...The same appears to be true in the election campaign, where the similar split on comprehensive revision of the land use code – e.g., Steve Adler vs. Laura Morrison – has largely disappeared over the direct need for more affordable housing..."
"... Former Lockheed Tract: This property along Burleson Road is located within the airport's compatibility land use zone allowing for manufacturing and production uses...."
"...Because only about two-thirds of BCP lands were actually purchased, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has required more stringent management of the preserve -- the less habitat there is, the higher the quality it must be to preserve the species..."
"...On a warm August morning, I stand in the dry bed of Onion Creek in Hays County and watch as Kevin Thuesen lowers himself into a hole in the earth. I pay attention when he stresses having three points of contact at all times because I'll soon be following him into this small cave..."
"...The proposed land swap between Austin Energy and Crestview Station LP is off. AE owns property adjacent to the Capital Metro commuter rail station being built at Airport and North Lamar, and its current use as a pole yard is the exact opposite of the dense, transit-oriented development city planners desire near transit hubs..."
"...Add John Leguizamo’s opportunistic but naive Cholo, a runner for Kaufman who hasn’t yet figured out this whole class thing, and Romero has again crafted a character-driven horror film that doubles as a metaphor for both the current economic disparity in America and, to a lesser degree, the war on terror. Speaking of terror, the local flesh-eaters, led by a hulking former gas-station attendant who’s by far the smartest zombie on the block, have begun to relearn how to use basic tools skills, augmenting their already formidable dentistry..."
"...Renovated storefront north of UT that, with its awkward L-shaped space, low ceiling, and cramped stage, just shouldn't work as a theatre. Yet it does, largely because of its intimacy -- you're never more than 20 feet from the action -- and the energy that companies invest in the space..."
"...Democrat Richard Raymond stumps at the courthouse in LaGrange photograph by Kayte VanScoy..."
"...public schools. This is the odd faceoff that occurs every time AISD proposes to build or expand schools in environmentally sensitive Southwest Austin: Environmentalists complain that AISD shouldn't build schools in the Barton Springs watershed because it encourages people to live there..."
"...Unsurprisingly, the DJCC has spawned a textbook neighbor/developer battle which has been transmuted, if not confused, by the cultural issues involved. "A lot of folks around City Hall see this as a `Jewish issue,' says one city source, "but the neighbors have a really good case." That case lands in the city council's collective lap on March 12, when the council hears appeals of the Planning Commission's January approval of the DJCC as planned...."
"...The brewery, nationally recognized for their farmhouse ales, has purchased 58 acres of land surrounding their property as a way to preserve the wide-open vistas and protect the land from development. “We felt we had to act,” said says Jester King founder Jeffrey Stuffings in a release..."
"...But the oil wealth they produced continues to provide billions of dollars' worth of support to students in Texas. And some of those same university lands could begin paying dividends for Texas recreation users...."
"...In this political environment, however, in which “development” is a flash-point issue, I think that particular words have to be chosen carefully for the most accurate and nonconfusing communication. The subject of this letter is the use of the word “developer” in the article..."
"...How did we get here? Remember that, back in the 1960s and early 1970s, when the idea of a downtown waterfront civic complex began to coalesce, there were no skyscrapers in Austin, and the official "central business district" ended at the Fourth Street railroad tracks. The warehouse blocks south of those tracks were renewal-ready as early as 1960, when APT Inc..."
"...It's where UT staff can eat lunch on the cheap, or students can hang out at 2am after a long night of studying (or drinking), and the sticky patina on the tables bears witness to their long years of use. It's also one of the last few places where students can gather near campus that isn't a church or a chain..."
"...As part of this new paradigm, park managers across the country are examining mass transit options that address air and water quality issues, and eliminate overcrowding and traffic snarls. Similarly, parks that see a lot of winter snowmobile use, such as Yellowstone, are examining bans that could prevent the continued degradation of natural resources...."
"...Don't get me wrong. I am not trying to burden Puerto Rican writing with the same second-class status that we (and the Spaniards before us) have bestowed upon the beautiful island, denying it true statehood even as we refuse to relinquish control of it..."
"...The city's $55 million in affordable-housing bonds on the ballot in November has a lengthy list of high-profile supporters eager to use bonds for future housing projects, but conspicuously missing from that list is the first, and biggest, provider of affordable housing for Austin's lowest-income residents...."
"...It was supposed to be as fresh as the bread and fruit being hawked in the market stalls around it. And Bill Irwin understands that; that was why, in 1986, he adapted the English-language script of Cuckolds by Leon Katz that had been in use since the Fifties..."
"...This is a disgrace to everything our country was founded upon. Current and past presidents have used some of the very substances that these companies will be testing for, so what message are we really sending our kids? Our senators and representatives have conveniently exempted themselves from drug testing while Drug Czar John Walters tours the country pressuring school boards to implement drug testing for our children. The hypocrisy of this is so thick it stinks. We allow beer commercials and every sort of prescription drug commercial on TV and radio, yet we somehow expect our kids won't be tempted to use drugs of one sort or another. This is a joke. America had better wake up soon and let its representatives know that we've had enough. Judge our children by the content of their character, not the composition of their urine...."
"...I am the jellyfish who walks upon the land. We'll be ready for bed when we get back to the big blue house..."
"...In the sorting room at the 20,000-square-foot warehouse on South Congress, a crowd of volunteers is rooting through boxes of donated food; separating the good from the bad, the edible from the spoiled; and then stacking the results into recycled banana crates. Forklifts carry pallets of boxes and load them on trucks..."
"...New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson this week signed his state’s medi-pot bill into law, making New Mexico the 12th state to legalize the use of pot for medicinal purposes by seriously ill patients..."
"..."This latest issue regarding the CLEAT President and use of Association Business Leave could have been avoided if we had simply followed the Meet & Confer Agreement," Ott wrote in the 2011 memo. "The language is very restrictive and it is clear; the Association Business Leave hours were not intended to be utilized by the state police union." Ott also mentions "other instances," such as issues with DWI blood draws and the spring 2011 standoff between Acevedo and newly entrenched Police Monitor Margo Frasier (see "Point Austin: The Monitor Comes Knocking," May 27, 2011) as other examples of instances in which a demonstration of "management initiative" on Acevedo's part could have kept stories from the press...."
"...Atomizing the album live, start to finish, the Sword's exclusive day party debut of Gods during South by Southwest 08 at Spider House's neighboring United States Art Authority now stands as one of the local foursome's most fearsome hometown sunderings. And there have been a few such absolute crushers since the Sword's 2004 in-store debut at North Loop music emporium Sound on Sound..."
"...The opportunity it offers to connect the blues aurally and visually goes a long way to recommend the Austin Museum of Art's "Visualizing the Blues: Images of the American South, 1862-1999" to fans of music or anyone disinclined to venture inside a museum. It transforms that traditionally hushed, contemplative, visually focused experience into something less formal and more engaging, in terms of the human senses it involves and the associations it leads us to make with the show's subject through folk and pop culture, and the expression of emotion as well as its depiction..."
"...The latest version of the RMMA Redevelopment and Reuse Master Plan's "Regulating Plan" -- the zoning map, in effect -- contains the same sorts of buildings as in past drafts, but in different proportions and orientations. Here's a guide to the key features of ROMA's plan, and some local and far flung examples of what they have in mind: Town Center..."
"...And it got to No.1 on the Top 40 hit parade. That's because Dragnet was so hot at the time."..."
"...Sometimes following land use in Austin is like hitting yourself over the head with a 4x4. And there's a reason for that..."
"..."CodeNEXT is an attempt to make the land-use code reflect what Imagine Austin [the city's comprehensive plan, formally adopted in 2012] said to do," Rogers said. But "the draft doesn't reflect the 'corridors and nodes' approach of adding housing; instead, it's got these 'neighborhood transect zones' that have kind of a cookie-cutter approach..."
"...Like much of council's previous meeting, the upcoming agenda (Thursday, Aug. 26) is devoted to development standards and land-use questions...."
"...It's summer, and City Hall watchers are tensely waiting for the Budget Monster rather than actually doing anything, so an unusual portion of city-beat ink and airtime has been consumed by land-use quarrels -- the staple food of Austin politicos and at times the crux for great change in our fair city but more typically ignored, or actively avoided, by opinion makers. We have an emergent crusade against big-box retail, particularly over the aquifer -- although, to be candid, the saving of the springs, a cause long held to be unique and transcendent, is only one concern of the most vocal foes of Wal-Mart and Lowe's..."
"...Mayor Steve Adler opened up City Council's special called meeting on CodeNEXT Wednesday with a short tribute to John Fregonese, the city planner who succumbed to cancer last week. Fregonese was a major consultant on Austin's land use rewrite, and Adler said he will be sorely missed..."