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Eastwood subdivision development postponed

Monday, June 15, 2009 by Jacob Cottingham

The Zoning and Platting Commission recently voted 4-0 to postpone consideration of the preliminary plan for the Eastwood subdivision, a 2,316-lot development in Austin’s ETJ near Manor. The postponement until July 7 was a compromise between attorneys representing the Eastwood development and the attorney representing a neighboring landlocked landowner, who also wants to develop several hundred acres.

 

Jerry Harris, representing landowner Ed Wolf, told In Fact Daily he requested the postponement in order for Wolf to develop his 203 acres at the same “approximate density” of Eastwood. Eastwood surrounds Wolf’s land on three sides. Wolf is unable to get the same density because the roads leading out of his proposed subdivision – which has yet to receive a preliminary plan approval —are not wide enough for Travis County. “The county is telling Mr. Wolf, if he wants to get the same density, he has to have two 60-foot right-of-ways  connecting out.” Currently, there are five planned roads leading out of Wolf’s land with a Right of Way at 50 feet wide. 

 

Eastwood will have 2,318 lots on 667.5 acres with standard lots of 5,750 square feet per lot. In addition, the larger subdivision will have 12.7 acres of multifamily development and 36 acres of commercial development. Eastwood sits along FM 973 and Blake-Manor Road. The Eastwood developer has entered into an agreement with Travis County to mitigate the impacts of traffic at a maximum $1,500 per lot and a maximum 666 platted lots. They have also agreed to a phased development process that would enable congestion problems to theoretically be addressed before they are too big.

 

Commissioners, however were concerned about the potential impact that increased traffic would have. Commissioner Donna Tiemann brought to attention a letter from the City Manager of Manor, which also expressed concern for the traffic.

 

Terrence Irion, representing the Eastwood developer told I, “the concerns [commissioners] have is that at one time TxDOT had planned building the 973 bypass road,” he said. “When they look at all the projects planned for the area—Whisper Valley, Wolf Ranch, Eastwood, Central Park—there’s 25,000 units and that could generate an enormous amount of traffic. This isn’t going to happen overnight or in the next decade,” he said. TxDOT and the Manor Independent School District did not have any comments or identified issues with the Eastwood development, according to staff reports.

 

Harris described the situation with Eastwood to In Fact Daily, “We’re trying to sit down and see, hey, is there any back scratching we can do for you, and you’ll scratch our back maybe.” That accommodation would likely involve some sort of road for Harris’ client. ZAP will hear if such a scenario works out on July 7.

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