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ZAP approves rezoning for multifamily near Connally High School

Friday, October 23, 2020 by Daniel Salazar

The Zoning and Platting Commission has approved a rezoning request for a multifamily apartment complex on Austin’s far northern fringe.

At its Tuesday meeting, ZAP approved rezoning 23.6 acres of undeveloped land for the Cypress Creek Apartment Homes at 1417 W. Howard Lane from Community Commercial (GR) and General Commercial Services-Conditional Overlay (CS-CO) to Community Commercial-Mixed Use (GR-MU).

The property is at the southeast intersection of West Howard Lane and Interstate 35 and is also near John B. Connally High School.

Sherri Sirwaitis, the city’s case manager on the rezoning request, said staffers recommended the Community Commercial-Mixed Use combining district zoning.

“The staff supports the rezoning request because the site meets the intent of the GR-MU district,” she said. “The property can serve community and citywide needs as it is located along major arterial roadways.”

Sirwaitis said the tract is near a variety of commercial, office and residential uses.

The developer wants to build about 352 apartment units, with 80 percent being affordable at 60 percent of the median family income, and the remaining 20 percent being market-rate, said Alice Glasco, representing the applicant.

Glasco said the apartment complex would feature multi-bedroom units.

Commissioner David King pulled the rezoning case for discussion on Tuesday’s agenda for questions about the unit count and wildfire risk in the area.

The project’s site plan is now in progress.

King appreciated the levels of affordability that the multifamily complex would offer new residents.

“I’m very happy to see that we have this many affordable units,” he said.

Commissioner Jim Duncan said he liked the location of this type of project, pointing to its proximity to schools, commercial uses, the interstate and other arterial roads.

“This is one of the perfect sites for this type of use,” Duncan said. “This is where we don’t need to cram density, quite frankly.”

Commissioner Ann Denkler was also very supportive of the project.

“This really followed Imagine Austin,” she said, referring to the city’s 2012 comprehensive plan.

Commissioners unanimously approved the rezoning request.

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