Friday, June 10, 2016 by Vicky Garza

State considering sale of land in Central and West Austin

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission is considering the sale of state-owned land totaling 223 192 acres on two sites in Central and West Austin.

The first step is a study, currently underway, to determine the feasibility of relocating the Austin State Hospital and the Austin State Supported Living Center. The study is required by Senate Bill 200, which was passed during the 2015 legislative session.

The 128-acre 99-acre Austin State Hospital at 4110 Guadalupe St. consists of 39 buildings. It is located on the same large block as Central Market.

The Austin State Supported Living Center site at 2203 W 35th St., across from Camp Mabry, consists of 65 buildings on 93 acres.

The two parcels have been the subtext for a number of recent conversations at City Council, most notably a heated argument over the map that dictates parkland dedication fees for developers and a change to the city’s PUD Ordinance that also led to some tense moments on the Council dais. State land is not zoned, unlike most of the property in Austin.

“Our office fully intends on staying informed of this process and receiving input from neighbors and the public regarding the future of this land,” said a spokeswoman for District 9District 10 Council Member Sheri Gallo.

Calls and emails to the office of Mayor Pro Tem Kathie Tovo, who represents District 10District 9, were not returned by time of publication.

The commission will hold three hearings in June — one each in Austin, Round Rock and San Marcos — to present all the options being considered in the study and to hear from the public. The study will be released on Sept. 1, 2016.

This story has been corrected to reflect the accurate Council districts of Council members Gallo and Tovo and include a correction from the Texas Department of State Health Services concerning the size of the Austin State Hospital property.

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Texas Legislature: The state’s legislative governing body composed of the House and Senate.

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