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Stories by Elizabeth Pagano

Thursday, September 7, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Botched demo agitates Preservation Office

A pile of rubble on the east side could spark changes in how the city handles demolitions.At the most recent meeting of the Historic Landmark Commission, Historic Preservation Officer Steve Sadowsky presented “unfortunate news” about the demolition of 1401 East…

Tuesday, September 5, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Casar issues call for citywide paid sick days

This Labor Day, a group of community advocates and leaders gathered to celebrate the holiday with a push for more progressive employment legislation in Austin. The group, led by Council Member Greg Casar, issued a call for City Council to…

Friday, August 25, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Carport door raises big issues in Zilker

A recent case at the Board of Adjustment will allow one Zilker resident to finally close the door of their carport. But the case has also opened the door on neighborhood association politics and what happens when a complex Land…

Monday, August 21, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Memo identifies preliminary locations for temporary homeless shelters

As part of a recent push to help Austin’s homeless, the city has been looking into using city-owned buildings to help ease overcrowding in downtown shelters. Last week, the Parks and Recreation Department provided a list of recreation centers that…

Monday, August 21, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

City Budget: Austin weighs in

For the past month or so, City Council has been working through the details of this year’s proposed budget. At their most recent meeting, Council members heard from Austinites in a 2 1/2-hour public hearing that focused on the shape…

Monday, August 14, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Planning Commission endorses east side plan to replace auto salvage yard with mixed-use project

Continuing tension over gentrification, density and a lack of adequate planning for growth on the city’s east side converged on an unlikely fight to preserve an East Austin junkyard at the most recent meeting of the Planning Commission.In the end,…

Friday, August 11, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Penick Place historic bid goes ‘a bridge too far’

Will Penick Place be Austin’s next local historic district? It’s possible, but a rough start at the Historic Landmark Commission means that neighbors hoping to enshrine their neighborhood will have to rethink their priorities, and most likely scrap a dogged…

Friday, August 4, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Demolition ahead for Pressler Street bungalow

The West Line Historic District will be losing a Pressler Street bungalow to demolition. A bid for historic preservation against the wishes of the owner fell flat at the most recent meeting of the Historic Landmark Commission.Commissioners voted 8-0 to…

Thursday, August 3, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Plan to move Old Negro Women’s Home out of town stalls at City Hall

Despite palpable compassion for its owner, the Historic Landmark Commission threw its full weight behind keeping the building that was once the Old Negro Women’s Home in East Austin at its last meeting.Commissioners voted unanimously in favor of individual historic…

Monday, July 17, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Reporter’s Notebook: Don’t say that

Yeah, OK, on the record, then… During the May 9 meeting of the Community Development Commission, commissioners took up the issue of developing Levander Loop with affordable housing. After a bit of misunderstanding, Neighborhood Housing and Community Development Assistant Director…

Thursday, July 13, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

St. Johns ‘project of change’ gets needed break

After months of compromise, the Board of Adjustment has opted to let a St. Johns work/live project live, despite lingering concerns from neighbors about entering into a new era of transportation-oriented development.In order to build a two-story, five-unit multifamily project…

Monday, July 10, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Tarrytown home officially a ‘tear-down’ now

Austin will say goodbye to another Fehr and Granger home after a short-handed Historic Landmark Commission failed to move forward with a recommendation for historic zoning at its most recent meeting.Unlike most cases where the Historic Preservation Office weighs in…

Thursday, July 6, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Commission facing limited options, West Line demolition postponed

The Historic Landmark Commission once again exercised one of the few options it has and postponed a demolition in the West Line Historic District at its most recent meeting.Commissioner Kevin Koch pointed out that the commission’s options were “quite limited” given…

Wednesday, July 5, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Push to landmark 1960s dairy homestead gets new life, and death, at City Hall

For a second time, the Historic Landmark Commission has denied historic zoning for a home that was once the site of the Schieffer Dairy. Though the house at 3901 Brookview Road is now headed for demolition, it has spurred the…

Friday, June 30, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Bouldin demolition raises odd questions, provides no answers at Historic Landmark Commission

There was a great deal of confusion on the dais at the Historic Landmark Commission meeting Monday night following a plea from a homeowner opposed to the proposed demolition of her own home.“I really don’t understand how it works. I’m…

Tuesday, June 27, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Historic Landmark Commission reforms hit a bump

Despite an agreement across sides that the current process is “Kafkaesque,” the Planning Commission did not vote to support an amendment that would change the number of Historic Landmark commissioners it takes to recommend historic zoning over the objections of…

Wednesday, June 14, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

West Austin Triplex bid stalls at BoA

Time and money did not prove to be a sufficient hardship at the Board of Adjustment, where an Old West Austin homeowner hoping to build a triplex on a multifamily lot learned the price of 600 feet this week.William Schaub…

Tuesday, June 13, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Introducing CodeNEXT HUB

For years, we’ve done our best to make CodeNEXT easier for Austinites to understand. And now we have a lot of help.Keeping track of what’s going on with the city’s Land Development Code rewrite is a daunting task, to be…

Tuesday, May 30, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

Mixed vibes surround Bouldin carport variance

It takes more than heat and birds to justify a carport in this town. Heat and birds are just a part of life in Austin, Texas.That was the lesson at the Board of Adjustment for Aaron McGarry, who owns the…

Tuesday, May 30, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

West Line home plans unsettle landmark commission

Despite some strong indications that it might be fruitless, Historic Landmark commissioners voted May 22 to postpone a recommendation for a new Old West Austin home in the hopes that something different might be built.Last year, the Historic Landmark Commission…

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