Point Austin: Beside the Point
The council continues to hold executive session discussions on the Seaholm tract and Block 21, but the buzz concerning the Downtown redevelopments hasn't yet returned to the dais. Item 27 is a resolution adopting the Thomas/Raul Alvarez Eastside revitalization project, aimed at redevelopment, including affordable housing and small business promotion from Manor Road south to Riverside.
Several of the zoning cases involve Westside historic zoning proposals, with none looking to be like the marathons that occurred last week over Dr. Fernando Loya's dentist's office in Swede Hill (a zoning dispute transformed surrealistically into a revival meeting) or the Rainey Street district rezoning, at long last, to Central Business District, on the road to high-density multiuse infill.
The evening's entertainment after a live music performance from "Solid Waste Services' Sergeant Bin" include a public hearing on the proposed commercial and retail design standards (still headed for Zoning and Platting Commission and Planning Commission down the line, so they will undoubtedly return). Could be diverting with lots of pretty pictures although nothing on the scale of last week, when the council heard from staff on CAMPO's 2030 Mobility Plan (run for your lives) and the city's preliminary bond needs assessment. The latter was whittled, we were told, from more than a billion dollars to a mere $800 million ("substantially more than we have the bonding capacity for" Toby Futrell). Of that, more later. And the same for Austin Police Department Chief Stan Knee's briefing on the revised Taser policy, statistically persuasive and mostly self-congratulatory: "We believe that the Taser is an effective tool in reducing situations where police officers and suspects come in violent contact, and has reduced the number of serious injuries to both officers and suspects."