Naked City

Council Caught in the Stratusphere

Hopefully, members of the City Council squeezed some eardrum Pilates into their busy schedules in the two weeks since their last dais-side appearance, because this week brings the return of Stratus Properties -- otherwise known as Beau Armstrong's summertime project. Will the show again last until 3am? Who will make the coolest cardboard salamander? Will anyone call anyone else a dirty name? No one knows, but stalwarts who sit through the entire episode should get a consolation prize for their efforts -- perhaps a free acre of impervious cover in the Barton Springs Watershed.

In addition to Stratus, other council activities include:

Approving a contract to retain Renea Hicks and Scott, Douglas and McConnico LLP to represent the city in the lawsuit filed by the Save Our Springs Alliance and Circle C Neighborhood Association over the Stratus project. The city, Stratus, and the Circle C Land Corp. are named defendants.

Approve $2 million in TEA-21 funds from the Texas Dept. of Transportation for Parks and Recreation to construct the Northern Walnut Creek Trail.

Approve on second/third reading the Vintage on Town Lake, a proposed upscale multifamily project next to the Wellesley Inn and Suites, on Riverside Drive. The Vintage has caused a stir among some South Austin residents who say the developer wants to build too high. The council unanimously approved the project on first reading June 14.

Transfer $70,000 in county funds (via an interlocal agreement) to the Austin Police Department to enhance 911 by mapping addresses in unincorporated areas of the county.

Approve a resolution by Mayor Gus Garcia to create a council subcommittee on health-care issues, as well as appointments to other council subcommittees and local intergovernmental boards.

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