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Stories by Sommer Brugal

Friday, June 22, 2018 by Sommer Brugal

Zoning and Platting remains unhappy with PUD ordinance

With Draft 3 of CodeNEXT currently under review, the Zoning and Platting Commission voted to send a letter to the mayor and City Council concerning the code’s failure to address problems with the city’s current system of planned unit developments.Commissioner…

Thursday, June 21, 2018 by Sommer Brugal

‘Speed cushions’ hit Health and Human Services Committee

Though the program that brings new speed cushions to Austin is currently in a holding pattern, the City Council Health and Human Services Committee received an update regarding traffic calming devices at its meeting last Wednesday afternoon.Chair Ora Houston said…

Wednesday, June 6, 2018 by Sommer Brugal

Will Smoot Terrace Park be a local historic district?

Old West Austin could be home to another local historic district, if a proposal for Smoot Terrace Park is approved by City Council. The district is located between West Sixth and Ninth streets, covering 17.5 acres of land along Highland…

Tuesday, May 8, 2018 by Sommer Brugal

Commission votes to expand Injury Prevention Program

In an effort to support the Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Service’s efforts to reduce preventable injuries, the Public Safety Commission passed a motion to fund and expand the county’s Injury Prevention Program at its May 7 meeting.Lisa Sepulveda, Austin-Travis County…

Wednesday, May 2, 2018 by Sommer Brugal

City Council approves plan to end homelessness

The rising concern surrounding homelessness and its growing numbers will receive greater attention and resources moving forward, now that City Council unanimously approved a resolution to endorse the city’s Action Plan to End Homelessness at its April 26 meeting.The action…

Friday, April 20, 2018 by Sommer Brugal

Commission votes to allow residential buffer between neighborhood and small business development

At its April 17 meeting, the Zoning and Platting Commission approved a rezoning on Ferguson Lane and Sansom Road, despite strong urges to reject the proposal from the residents of Walnut Place Neighborhood Association. The agreed-upon motion includes a residential…

Tuesday, July 11, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Human Rights Commission talks density bonuses

Housing affordability in Austin as it relates to CodeNEXT was the center of attention at the Human Rights Commission meeting on Monday, June 26. On behalf of Austin Habitat for Humanity, Greg Anderson, the organization’s director of operations, presented a…

Wednesday, July 5, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

New proposal connects residents to transit corridors via parklands

Austin residents are calling for a more compact and connected city. Thanks to a proposed strategy to reimagine the use of parklands around the city, Sustainable Neighborhoods might have the solution residents are seeking.Steve Zettner of Sustainable Neighborhoods presented the…

Monday, June 26, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Study offers a window into the lives of recyclers

Members of the Zero Waste Advisory Commission embraced the results of a six-month study intended to reveal the recycling habits of Austinites at their most recent meeting.Emlea Chanslor, Austin Resource Recovery public information officer, presented the study’s results. She said…

Wednesday, June 21, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Austin residents push for more aggressive energy goal

A number of concerned citizens gathered to speak at the Austin Energy Utility Oversight Committee meeting Monday morning to express their frustration with Austin Energy’s updated Resource, Generation, and Climate Protection Plan.While the updated plan, which was written by a…

Monday, June 19, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Animal Advisory Commission weighs Monk parakeet deal

Austin’s population of Monk parakeets has garnered a lot of attention over the past few weeks, with some questioning Austin Energy’s policy for removing the birds’ nests from power lines and utility structures in town.The Animal Advisory Commission heard from…

Wednesday, May 31, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

SH 45 SW continues to move forward

The Barton Springs/Edwards Aquifer Conservation District Board of Directors was informed of various updates to State Highway 45 Southwest at its regular meeting May 25.The high-profile transportation project, which hopes to improve mobility for the northern Hays and southern Travis…

Friday, May 26, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Could pocket parks be the new norm?

Grappling with a number of park-deficient areas around the city, various Austin neighborhoods are struggling to find places that could serve as parkland nearby residents can enjoy.This week, members of the Parks and Recreation Board agreed on a possible solution:…

Friday, May 26, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Parks board embraces plans for Republic Square

Ten years after Austin first announced its vision for the remodeling of Republic Square, the space is finally set to make its debut in the heart of downtown Austin this fall.Mandi Thomas, the partnership and development director of the Downtown…

Wednesday, May 17, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Costly wastewater expansion gets OK

Only a few commissioners raised questions on various recommendations presented at the Water and Wastewater Commission’s regular meeting May 10. But when it came to the approval of interlocal agreements and costs related to the Brushy Creek Regional Wastewater System…

Thursday, May 11, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Environmental Commission holds off on water quality requirements (again)

Despite the Environmental Commission’s efforts to remove controversial amendments to the Watershed Protection Ordinance at previous meetings, the commission was unable to resolve an amendment relating to water quality control at its regular meeting May 3.Andrea Bates, the environmental program…

Monday, May 8, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Public Safety Commission weighs in on tight city budget

In advance of what promises to be a budget process full of tough choices, the Public Safety Commission received a briefing from the Budget Office on Fiscal Year 2017-18 at its meeting May 1. The presentation included information and findings…

Wednesday, May 3, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Public Safety Commission calls for refined counting measures of city’s homeless population

Andy Hofmeister, Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services division chief, addressed the Public Safety Commission at its May 1 meeting. Hofmeister answered questions of concern regarding the city’s growing homeless population.According to Hofmeister, there were roughly 2,200 homeless individuals in Austin…

Tuesday, May 2, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Environmental Commission gets chance with CodeNEXT updates, concerns

CodeNEXT is the talk of the town. So it’s no surprise the main topic of conversation at the Environmental Commission meeting Wednesday evening was no different. The commission heard recommendations from the Watershed Protection Department, but took no formal action…

Tuesday, April 25, 2017 by Sommer Brugal

Austin Energy proposes Value of Solar for commercial properties

Austin Energy presented a commercial Value of Solar proposal at the Austin Energy Utility Oversight Committee Monday morning. Danielle Murray, the Solar Energy Services manager at Austin Energy, said the proposed plan would have benefits for both present and future…

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