Naked City

This Week in Council

The City Council eases back into action this week after a one-week break for the holidays. The council will hold a 6pm public hearing on Thursday, Jan. 6, on their proposed settlement with Gary Bradley, under which the developer's 3,000-plus acres in Southwest Austin would be developed in compliance with SOS impervious cover standards and would comply with city water quality regulations; among other compromises in the proposed agreement (which resulted from an attempt to settle litigation currently pending between Bradley and the city), Bradley would agree to annexation of his Spillar Ranch and Pfluger Ranch properties. In return, both properties would receive water and wastewater service from the city.

Council members will also set public hearings for the annexation of two tracts of land. The first and more contentious, known as the Regents Tract, is the site of the Christian, privately run Regents School and its recently completed athletic field (neighbors call it a "football stadium"), which residents of the neighboring Travis Country subdivision say is producing traffic, noise, and light pollution. Neighbors want the city to annex the 164-acre tract (which sits directly on the edge of Austin's southwest city limit) so it can enforce noise, pollution, and other compatibility standards.

The second tract, the 99-acre Preserve at River Place, is the site of an exclusive single-family subdivision off FM 2222. Both hearings are tentatively expected to be scheduled for Jan. 27 and Feb. 3, both at 6pm.

Council members will also consider on first reading an ordinance to annex the Avery Tract, a massive, 1,630-acre PUD on the northernmost edge of the North Edwards Aquifer. The tract is the proposed site of nearly 1,100 acres of residential development, as well as a golf course, flood plain, and greenbelt expected to take up 368 acres with about 2.2 million square feet of commercial development.

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    Off the Desk

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    A number of so-called "duplexes" -- massive, brightly painted multifamily residences with two kitchens and up to six residents -- have cropped up virtually overnight in the North University area, incensing area homeowners.
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    Sea turtle advocates say Gov. George W. Bush should do more to protect endangered species of turtles, many of which are indigenous to the Gulf Coast and are harmed by pollution and the shrimping industry.

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    Hays County environmentalists and other area residents applaud a recent LCRA decision to delay building a water pipeline to Dripping Springs until an Environmental Impact Statement can be completed.

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    Action Items

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