W.A.N.G. Newsletter June-2018
PO Box 5722, Austin, TX 78763-5722
in this Issue.....
- City Council Hearing on CodeNEXT
- New Regional Corridors with Up-Zoned Density
- District 10 Update - MUNY/WAYA meeting - June 25th
- W.A.N.G Monthly Meeting Minutes for June
- Code news - CodeNext : The process from here...
- Letters to the Board...
- Neighborhood Real Estate Stats - June 11, 2018
- Texas A&M AgriLife Extension - Spider Mites
- Austin City Limits Festival Info
MUNY and WAYA Meeting WITH DISTRICT-10 COUNCIL MEMBER ALISON ALTER
Monday, June 25th, 7-8pm
2901 Enfield Road
COUNCIL HEARING ON CODENEXT
Special City Council Hearing on CodeNEXT
On June 2, 2018, City Council held a public hearing on CodeNext, one of the highlights was Joyce Basciano's presentation to the City Council during Item 1 Part 1 of 4. Joyce made some great points, watch & listen to what she had to say. Joyce's presentation starts at the 49 minute mark. See the video of her at Council! Click on the bar below and move the time to 49 min mark.....also, W.A.N.G. Board Member, Holly Reed speaks shortly after that at minute mark 56.
Conduct a public hearing regarding adoption of a comprehensive revision to the Land Development Code, commonly referred to as “CodeNEXT,” relating to the regulation of land use and development in the City of Austin and its extraterritorial jurisdiction, together with related actions and City Code amendments.
I’m Joyce Basciano, I’ve lived in Austin for 44 years and Bryker Woods for the past 40 years.
CodeNEXT is beyond repair. Continuing to work on it is comparable to keeping a body on life support after rigor mortis has set in. After you “grafted” an additional $2M from us taxpayer’s to complete the code, it has only grown, after 3 and a half drafts, into a “Frankencode” of 1500 error-riddled pages that includes 450 pages of addenda and errata, plus a new map that you, the land commissioners, planning staff and we the people are struggling to understand in so little time.
Four years ago we were promised a land development code, for $2M, that would be easy to understand and use. It was supposed to be a hybrid code, one that would maintain existing Euclidean code categories with the addition of Form Based Code categories. It was not supposed to be a total code rewrite. In addition, it was supposed to be implemented in a few neighborhoods that wanted to test drive it. It wasn’t supposed to be used as a bulldozer to implement city-wide up-zoning or to implement proposed corridor plans. I understand that the Planning Commission has made dozens of recommendations to CodeNEXT that go way beyond the Imagine Austin Comprehensive Plan. One, in particular, reclassifies streets, creating 5 block -deep zones of increased density around those streets. Promises broken! So let’s return “Frankencode” to the consultants and get our money back and then let’s fix the flawed community involvement process that produced “Frankencode”.
In my opinion, here’s why the CodeNEXT process was, and continues to be, a sham. It lacks transparency and accountability. For 3 years the public was entertained with slick brochures, powerpoints, swag and events that painted a rosy picture of the code the consultants and planning staff were creating. When we asked to see examples of the code, we were told to wait until the whole code could be released in January 2017. When we asked for disposition tables to help us understand the first draft, we were given a complex matrix. The city staff, positioned as a middleman between the community and the consultants, pushed its own agenda. With little information to go on, public input was easily manipulated and limited. The city has destroyed our trust in the process, so it shouldn’t be surprised that CodeNEXT is not supported by the communities it impacts, or that over 30 thousand citizens want to put CodeNEXT on the ballot next November.
How do we fix Code NEXT to be the community-based project that would reflect the goals of the Imagine Austin Comprehensive Plan, and the decisions citizens made in their Neighborhood Plans? Simple, start by cleaning up and reorganizing the existing Land Development Code. Then add Form Based Code or other categories as amendments. There are over 30 Neighborhood Plans, that the city spent over $13M on, and that neighborhood volunteers invested thousands of hours, working with the existing Land Development Code, to create. The knowledge and experience these volunteers have and the Neighborhood Plans are a valuable resource. Let’s use that resource to help create the new Land Development Code.
Remember this: people tend to support what they help to create.
A CODENEXT FORESHADOWING
by Barbara McArthur
(published in the Crestview newsletter)
Barbara McArthur worked on AustinPlan and served on the Urban Transportation Commission in the past, and has spent years involved in neighborhood planning. Currently she is looking at CodeNEXT text and mapping and working with Community not Commodity. For more information on CodeNEXT visit Community Not Commodity
NEW REGIONAL (up-zoned) CORRIDORS
New “Regional Corridor” Street’s have been designated by the Planning Commission which are now spread all throughout Tarrytown. That, along with the Planning Commission’s recommendation to up-zone all property within 5 blocks of Regional, Community, and Neighborhood corridors will bring higher density to 90% of the entire Tarrytown neighborhood.
This rezoning would consist of MU, MS, RM (apartments), R4 (multiplexes), R3 (cottage courts).
Block 1 - allows 120 feet max height
Block 2 - allows 85 feet max height
Block 3 - allows 40 feet max height
Currently, most of the Residential streets in the neighborhood are zoned SF-3 with a maximum height of 32 feet.
CodeNEXT’s R2 zoning (most similar to SF-3 zoning) begins in most types at the 5th block away from a regional corridor.
The Planning Commission recommends transformation of more than 100 of Austin’s streets into high-density corridors, all of which are at least a half-mile wide.
Mayor Steve Adler promised that Austin’s neighborhoods would be protected under CodeNEXT, but the Planning Commission apparently didn’t get the memo. It has proposed turning Enfield Road, Exposition Blvd., Windsor Road, 35th St., Lake Austin Blvd., and more than 100 other roadways across Austin into higher-traffic commercial corridors, with dramatic redevelopment encouraged within five city blocks on either side of each. So if you live within a quarter-mile of any of these streets, then get ready to see a variety of new and larger structures, including more mixed-use apartment buildings between six and 12 stories tall. (Yes, you read that correctly: Under the Planning Commission’s proposed law, many of these corridors will contain buildings 120 feet tall, the equivalent of 12 stories!)
Call the mayor and your council member today and tell them to reject the Planning Commission’s last-minute attempt to make CodeNEXT even worse! Tell them it’s time to drop this unwanted, ill-advised plan—or at the very least to put it to a public vote, as nearly 32,000 area residents demanded in a legally certified petition.
Planning Commission Corridor Transitions Directive (below)
Here is a list of some of the streets to be up zoned :
click on graphic to enlarge
Click on graphics to enlarge
Some of the streets in Tarrytown on the corridor list are:
- 15th/Enfield Road (Regional)
- 24th St. / Windsor Road (Neighborhood)
- 38th St. / 35th St. (Neighborhood)
- Lake Austin Blvd (Regional)
- Exposition Blvd (Neighborhood)
This month's AUSTIN MONTHLY magazine features the “Hot Spot” neighborhoods in Austin. And Tarrytown was one of the neighborhoods mentioned. CodeNEXT will eventually change the very character that they claim makes Tarrytown so appealing. The Planning Commission seems to be very much in favor of CodeNEXT which zones the majority of Tarrytown for more density. The “Transition Zones” shown in red above encompass pretty much the entire Tarrytown area. (See Map above)
The 20 best neighborhoods in Austin
These are the top places for buying a house
District 10 update.....
District 10 Council Member Alison Alter, City of Austin City Council
Muny and WAYA Meeting – June 25
Lions Municipal Golf Course, better known in the community as Muny, is a beautiful piece of open space in west Austin that has served as a public golf course since 1924. The course sits on the Brackenridge Tract, which is owned by the University of Texas System. In 1989, the UT System renewed the City of Austin's lease of the golf course land for an additional 30 years. In 2011, the University Board of Regents declared their intention not to renew the lease, leaving the future of Muny uncertain. The West Austin Youth Association, which leases land adjacent to Muny for their youth sports programs, is in a similar situation.
I have been closely following this issue and have heard from many neighbors who are concerned as well. In order to discuss the current state of affairs and hear from the community on this matter, I am holding a public meeting at the Muny clubhouse. This will be an informal meeting for me to provide an update from the City's side of the discussion, as well as for you to share your thoughts and concerns. Please join me for this meeting and feel free to invite your neighbors.
Monday, June 25, 2018
Lions Municipal Golf Course - Clubhouse
WANG JUNE 2018 Meeting Minutes
WEST AUSTIN NEIGHBORHOOD GROUP
BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING MINUTES
Tuesday, May 1, 2018
These are the minutes of the meeting of the West Austin Neighborhood Group Board of Directors held Tuesday, June 5, 2018 at 6:30 p.m., at Howson Library
I. Call to Order:
The meeting was called to order at 6:42 PM by President Cathy Kyle. Board members in attendance included: Mary Arnold, Joyce Basciano, Joe Bennett, Mike Cannatti, George Edwards, August Harris, Craig Lill, Holly Reed and Blake Tollett. Board members Elizabeth Adams and Haidar Khazen were not in attendance.
Neighbors in attendance included James Logan and Kathleen Loughlin.
II. Approval of Minutes:
A motion was made by August Harris to approve the May Minutes, seconded by Joyce Basciano, and approved unanimously.
III. Neighbor Communications:
A. Contemporary Austin’s 35th St. Safety Improvement Project:
Stephanie Kingpetcharat gave a presentation to the WANG Board about the Contemporary Austin’s proposal to the City of Austin’s Neighborhood Partnering Program in order to create a 5 foot wide accessible sidewalk on the south side of West 35th St. in two phases:
Phase 1: West 35th St. between Mt. Bonnell and the cul-de-sac.
Phase 2: (pending submission and review): between Foothill Drive and Mt. Bonnell Road. Also, Marcus Primm from the City's Neighborhood Partnering Program was present to answer questions.
The cost of the project will be shared between the museum and the City of Austin.
The Contemporary asked for WANG’s support of the improvement project, and to consider the idea of the City adding sidewalks to both sides of this increasingly busier stretch of West 35th leading to Mayfield Park, Laguna Gloria and Westwood.
Mary Arnold asked if nearby neighbors had been contacted. Ms. Kingpetcharat said they had visited with neighbors in 2016, discussed putting sidewalks on both sides of 35th St. and neighbors had deferred to WANG and PARD. Blake Tollett said he had no objection to the sidewalks but asked that they be bumped out 5 feet, extending the space between Mayfield’s historic stone walls and the sidewalk.
Joe Bennett made a motion to approve the Contemporary’s proposal, with the condition that the sidewalks be bumped out 5 feet along Mayfield Park’s stone walls. The motion was seconded by President Kyle and approved unanimously, with Mary Arnold abstaining.
City staff said the review period for this proposal will conclude in September.
IV. Land Matters:
President Kyle reported on a deed restriction violation lawsuit in her neighborhood.
A. The Board discussed Cap Metro’s two new rapid transit bus routes through west Austin:
1. The No.18 bus line which circles Lions Municipal Golf Course, then heads east on Enfield
2. The No.335 bus line which circles the Austin State Supported Living Center and heads east on 35th St.
Holly Reed noted that these new routes appear to support the inappropriate transportation corridor up-zoning recommended by the Planning Commission to the City Council in their report on CodeNext. CodeNext has not yet been approved by the City Council (nor the citizens of Austin) and yet Cap Metro’s revised routes already align with the unapproved Draft 3 of CodeNext.
B. Mary Arnold reported on the Red Bud Trail Bridge “Improvement” proposal. This summer the City Council is considering what to put on the bond, and Mary noted that the bridge is on the list. Westlake Hills is not supportive of raising and widening the bridge. Mary expressed concern about the negative impact on the sensitive environment (cliffs and wildlife) near the bridge, should this project proceed as proposed.
C. Mary also reported that WANG received notification from Steve Kubenka that there is a new discharge drain off of Mopac at Enfield and Winsted, which dumps onto the sidewalk and directly into Johnson Creek. Mary emailed Mr. Steve Pustelynk at CTRMA about this concern and he replied that drainage from Mopac and city streets has always gone into Johnson Creek, but that they would be happy to review the drain if problems with flooding or filtration are observed. George Edwards suggested the drainage be directed under the sidewalk to prevent standing water and flooding. Although 2012 Bonds were to fund design of a new bridge, that preliminary design has not yet been completed nor presented to the public or City Council, yet the proposed new bridge recommended by the Bond Task Force is projected to cost $54 million dollars - up from the $18 million projected for construction in 2012.
Joe Bennett reported seeing some new memberships this month.
Joe and Haidar told the board that content for the online newsletter is due June 14th. This newsletter will feature a piece about the “Innovation Zone” proposed by Cap Metro for West Austin, as well as the Planning Commission’s recommendation to up-zone density along newly labeled “Regional Corridors” which include neighborhood streets in the WANG area.
VIII. ANC Liaison Report:
Joyce Basciano told the board about the two public input hearings at the City Council on CodeNext, May 29th and June 2, at City Hall. Mary Arnold attended the May 29th meeting. The City Council Chamber was filled with citizens and neighborhood group representatives, most of whom were strongly opposed to CodeNext because of the overwhelming destruction it could bring to their neighborhoods and communities. Joyce Basciano and Holly Reed spoke at the June 2nd meeting. Joyce’s review of the faulty CodeNext drew raucous applause from the crowd in Council Chambers. The Board agreed to share Joyce’s statement in the next newletter.
At the June 2nd hearing, former ANC President Mary Ingle asked Mayor Adler about a letter he wrote to the ANC dated October 14, 2016. Contrary to his current support of CodeNext, the Mayor had promised in his letter to keep transition (or higher density) zones out of single family neighborhoods, to honor Neighborhood Plans, and to protect neighborhood character.
Joyce Basciano also discussed the CodeNext Policy Table chart she obtained, which has city staff comments from all the departments on issues with Code Next Draft 3.
IX. Treasurer’s Report:
George Edwards reported that WANG has $8,812.14 in the Business Account, $1,179.36 in the Tarrytown 4th of July Parade Account, and $1,207.05 in the Oak Wilt Account for a total of $11,198.55
X. Old Business:
A. CodeNext: Opponents of CodeNext filed a lawsuit against the City on June 1st, after the City Council voted 6-4 not to place a petition-initiated ordinance on November’s ballot, denying residents of Austin to the right to vote on CodeNext. Council is proceeding with the CodeNext timeline, with their first reading on June 21st/22nd.
B. Brackenridge Tract: August Harris reported that their will be a community meeting with District 10 Council Member Alison Alter near the end of June. He noted that the cost for the City to bring infrastructure to the Brack Tract may be so prohibitive that another solution will have to be negotiated. An agreement must be in place with UT by November so that it can go through the legislative approval process. August noted that there will be a challenge in getting public funding for preservation of the Lions Municipal Golf Course. CM Alter’s Budget Meeting will be June 18th and she needs community input on the budget.
C. WANG Area Survey: Happy said we need at least 400 responses in order to have a statistically valid survey. Right now there are 90. Joe will send out a flyer, requesting more survey responses.
XI. New Business:
A. Annual Meeting: The Board discussed setting a date in October for the Annual Meeting. October 20th or 21st were finalists.
B. Next Meeting: Tuesday, July 3rd, 2018 at 6:30 PM at Howson Library.
XII. Adjourn: The meeting was adjourned by President Cathy Kyle at 8:20 PM.
OUR NEXT NEIGHBORHOOD MEETING...... JULY 3rd
Tuesday, July 3rd, 6:30pm
2500 Exposition Boulevard
(the first Tuesday of each month!)
To get an item on the Agenda, send email to President@WestAustinNG.com
Optional RSVP below if you would like to let us know you are planning to attend and receive an agenda as it becomes available (usually the day of the meeting)
RSVPs are enabled for this event.
click on graphic to enlarge
click on graphics to enlarge
WANG Board of Directors & Committee Members
Organized 1973......"To preserve our neighborhood and protect it from deterioration"
Board of Directors
- President: Cathy Kyle President@westaustinng.com
- Secretary: Holly Reed Secretary@westaustinng.com
- Assistant Secretary: Blake Tollett AsstSecretary@westaustinng.com
- Treasurer: George Edwards Treasurer@westaustinng.com
- Past President: August "Happy" Harris III PastPresident@westaustinng.com
Committee Members (click on name to send email)
- Elizabeth Adams
- Mary Arnold
- Joyce Basciano
- Joseph M Bennett
- Michael Cannatti
- George Edwards
- Haidar Khazen
- Craig Lill
- Holly Reed
Honorary Committee Members
- Honorary Mayor Steve Adler
- Honorary Alison Alter
- Honorary Kathie Tovo
Contact your City Council Representatives:
(click on name to send email)
- Mayor: Steve Adler 512-978-2100
- District 1: Ora Houston 512-978-2101
- District 2: Delia Garza 512-978-2102
- District 3: Sabino Renteria 512-978-2103
- District 4: Gregorio Casar 512-978-2104
- District 5: Ann Kitchen 512-978-2105
- District 6: Jimmy Flanigan 512-978-2106
- District 7: Leslie Pool 512-978-2107
- District 8: Ellen Troxclair 512-978-2108
- District 9: Kathie Tovo 512-978-2109
- District 10: Alison Alter 512-978-2110
Please mail application and check to: West Austin Neighborhood Group PO Box 5722 Austin, TX 78763-5722 Annual Memberships (Nov 1-Oct 31) $50-Friend Level; $100-PATRON Level; $30-FAMILY Level; $15-SENIOR Level; $250-BENEFACTOR Level
Letters to the Board.....
Send us your comments (letters!) and thoughts on any other neighborhood issue for our "Letters to the Board" section.......let's work together
Email us at WANG-BOARD@WESTAUSTINNG.COM
SIDEWALK CONSTRUCTION ON 35TH STREET
Dear Mary and your fellow Board members:
We were notified by the City’s project manager, John Eastman that sidewalk construction on 35th Street has been postponed until next week, May 14th and will still take about 3-weeks to complete. This postponement is as a result of the heavy rains last Friday. However, the initial landscaping efforts to remove select trees, deadfall, invasive species, and litter have been completed in preparation for sidewalk construction.
All my best,
The Contemporary Austin and Laguna Gloria
NEIGHBORHOOD REAL ESTATE STATISTICS 06/11/18
.............. SPIDER MITES
by Wizzie Brown, BCE
It’s hot. It’s dry. It’s time for spider mites. Spider mites are very small to microscopic in size and depending on how good your eyesight is, you may not be able to see them without a good hand lens or microscope.
While spider mites are not insects- they are arachnids and more closely related to spiders than insects- they are pests in the landscape. Most spider mites produce a webbing around their colony. It starts on the underside of leaves and will expand out as the population increases.
Feeding can cause leaves to discolor, creating a speckled appearance on foliage. With severe infestations, leaves discolor to a silver or bronze color which may result in leaves dropping from the plant. While mites feed on the underside of leaves, damage is more apparent on the tops.
Spider mites lay their eggs along the leaf vein during the growing season. Eggs are round and large in size when compared to adult mites. Some species of spider mites peak during warmer months of the year while others become more active in the cooler months of the year. The mites are able to develop more quickly when temperatures are warmer, with some spider mites going from egg to adult in less than 1 week. Spider mites thrive in dry conditions while their natural enemies require more humid conditions. Dry conditions allow spider mite populations to grow with little predation or parasitism that would help to keep the population at an acceptable level.
There are many predatory arthropods that feed on spider mites. Some of these include predatory mites, spider mite destroyers (a type of ladybug), minute pirate bugs, big-eyed bugs, and predatory thrips. Proper watering of plants may help to reduce spider mite outbreaks as it can reduce stress brought on by drought. Using strong jets of water directed on plants can also help to dislodge spider mites. Miticides or acaricides can be used to manage spider mite outbreaks. Look for active ingredients such as horticultural oils (watch temperature when you use oils), insecticidal soaps, spinosad, abamectin, bifenthrin, dimethoate, or acephate.
For more information or help with identification, contact Wizzie Brown, Texas AgriLife Extension Service Program Specialist
Wizzie Brown, BCE
My Blogs: http://urban-ipm.blogspot.com/
Instagram: urbanipm, Twitter: @UrbanIPM
Special Events happening around Austin, the On-line portal to Austin Center for Events (ACE) .......... CLICK ON THE BAR ABOVE ^^^
Click on the link above for these events and more happening around Austin !!!!
- Cooking Light & Health Fit Foodie Festival
- Fun Stop 5K & Fest
- HEB Austin Symphony 4th of July Concerts
- Blues on the Green
- Austin Duck Derby
WEST AUSTIN NEIGHBORHOOD GROUP – ACL/FEST NEWS
WANG meets with the City of Austin and the Organizers of the Austin City Limits Festival three times a year to coordinate and discuss any issues in the neighborhood during the two-week festival. We have coordinated with the City to locate enforceable “No Parking” signs, typically on one side of some of the more narrow streets in order to facilitate the passage of emergency vehicles through the neighborhood during the festival. This year the Festival is being held October 5-7 and 12-14.
The no parking signs will be set out on Oct 3 and will remain up until Oct 15. Please remember, If you are parked on the street side where the signs are located you must move your car to the other side of the street or you may be ticketed or towed.
The streets affected (see maps) will be
- Upson St (east side),
- Deep Eddy Ave (east side),
- Hearn St (west side),
- Meriden Ln (east side),
- W.7th St (north side), and
- Atlanta St (west side)
Click on the no parking map to the right to see the proposed sign locations. We will post the final one. If you would like to send us your comments and requests we will be be providing additional input to ACL in the next several weeks. ACL@westaustinng.com
WANG will be posting on our Web Site (www.WestAustinNG.com) a specially provided Call-in phone number that will be available to call to report any illegal parking or other issues happening in the neighborhood during the festival. This number will directly connect you to a City Staff member that will be able to dispatch police officers directly. We will send out a special newsletter mail out with the neighborhood phone in number before the festival. You may also send an email to ACL@westaustinng.com and request the number and we will provide you with the Call-in number when it is available.
ACL (2) 3 DAY PASS DRAWING
WANG will again be holding a drawing for two free ACL 3-Day passes to current PATRON Plus level or higher members. A PATRON-PLUS membership is $150 annually which includes you in the free drawing. You can upgrade your current Patron Level membership for $25. Two 3-Day passes are valued at $510!
ACL (2) 3-DAY PASS RAFFLE - 2018
Two additional 3-Day passes will be raffled off for $25 per raffle ticket. Tickets are open to everyone. Raffle drawing will be held in mid September. Email ACL@WestAustinNG.com for additional information.
ACL Festival Neighborhood Info
Texas Gas Service.............................1-800-700-2443
AT&T (new service)...........................1-800-464-7928
Time Warner Cable (Cust. Svc)...........512-485-5555
Austin/Travis Hazardous Waste.........512-974-4343