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Stories by Syeda Hasan

Tuesday, August 22, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Austin aims to simplify the language around CodeNEXT

The upcoming second draft of Austin’s new Land Development Code is expected to eliminate one of its key zoning tools, known as “transect” zones, which focus on a building’s form rather than its use.In theory, transect zones would allow for…

Thursday, August 10, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

MAP: Central Austin neighborhoods are providing the most feedback on CodeNEXT

The complete rewrite of the city’s Land Development Code known as CodeNEXT will have significant effects on housing, transportation and commercial development throughout Austin in the coming years. But so far, public input on the code has been anything but…

Wednesday, August 9, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Council considers using city-owned buildings to ease overcrowding at homeless shelters

City Council is looking at using city-owned buildings as temporary homeless shelters.The idea comes from Mayor Pro Tem Kathie Tovo, who says overcrowding at downtown shelters has led to harsh conditions for people experiencing homelessness.Speaking at City Hall on Tuesday,…

Tuesday, August 8, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Austin residents are beginning to move back into renovated public housing

Lisa Martinez walks around her newly renovated two-bedroom apartment at Manchaca Village, pointing out her favorite features: the blue accent wall in her living room, a new washer and dryer, and, best of all, a new dishwasher. It has made…

Wednesday, August 2, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Measure seeks ways to spread affordable housing more evenly across Austin

City Council is set to take up a measure Thursday to encourage development of affordable housing to be more evenly dispersed throughout the city.Low-income housing tends to be built in higher-poverty areas on the outer edges of the city. Rental…

Tuesday, July 25, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

High-rises to fill downtown Austin’s few remaining empty blocks

It’s hard to come by vacant land in downtown Austin these days, and the few empty blocks that remain are quickly being scooped up by developers. One of the area’s latest projects is at 308 Guadalupe Street.Earlier this month, Travis…

Friday, July 21, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Labor shortages, construction costs make it tough to build affordable homes in Austin

The rising cost of construction has made it harder to build affordable homes in Central Austin, housing analysts said after the Home Builders Association of Greater Austin released its midyear housing forecast Thursday.Researchers expressed general optimism about the growth Austin…

Monday, July 17, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Lawmakers to tackle local construction regulations during special session

Local control was a recurring theme during the 85th Texas Legislative session, and many of those policy debates will continue during the upcoming special session. When Gov. Greg Abbott announced the 20 items that will be taken up by lawmakers,…

Friday, July 7, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

For some Austin residents, CodeNEXT spurs fears of gentrification

When we talk about gentrification in Austin, the conversation tends to center around rapid redevelopment on the city’s east side. But residents of other neighborhoods near the city center have their eyes on the changes that Austin’s new land development…

Wednesday, June 28, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Austin architects say CodeNEXT limits opportunity for ‘missing middle’ housing

As Austin’s new land development code, known as CodeNEXT, is being written, city staff and the private sector are working to understand how it will shape future development.Last month, members of the Austin Chapter of the American Institute of Architects…

Wednesday, June 21, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Austin unveils new guide for the future of street design

Austin is in the process of adopting several plans that will guide the future of development and transportation in the region. Yesterday, the city revealed a new guide for the future of street design.It takes into account some key considerations…

Thursday, June 15, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Study could shed more light on housing discrimination in Central Texas

The federal Fair Housing Act aims to protect people from discrimination when renting, buying or financing a home. Despite those protections, the reality is that housing discrimination persists in many cities, and today City Council will consider a review of…

Thursday, June 8, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Council to consider tool that would bring permanently affordable housing to East Austin

Today, City Council is set to consider implementing a tool that would bring more affordable housing units to the east side. It’s called a community land trust, and it could create homes that remain affordable for decades to come.If approved,…

Monday, June 5, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Report finds most traffic on Rainey Street stems from surrounding roadways

Traffic congestion has long been a concern for people who live and work along Rainey Street. Last year, neighbors struck a deal with a developer looking to build new condos in the area. They agreed to conduct a comprehensive traffic…

Tuesday, May 23, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

In Hyde Park, residents question how CodeNEXT will be implemented

Since the city released its first draft of a new land development code earlier this year, residents and city leaders have been working to understand how it will shape Austin neighborhoods.In Hyde Park, residents have adopted a tool that regulates…

Thursday, May 18, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Council considers providing rental assistance to Austin arts groups

Today, City Council is set to consider a plan to provide rental assistance to arts organizations. That’s after Mayor Steve Adler made a series of proposals aimed at strengthening the city’s music scene last year. For many Austin artists, some…

Wednesday, May 17, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

City, state officials call for legal action against ‘sanctuary cities’ law

Government officials and community activists from across the state gathered outside the Texas Capitol on Tuesday to voice support for taking legal action to stop the so-called “sanctuary cities” law.Senate Bill 4, which goes into effect September 1, allows officers…

Monday, May 15, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Austin won’t reopen its housing voucher waitlist anytime soon

The federal housing choice voucher program, which used to be called Section 8, is aimed at helping low-income families meet their housing costs. Here in Austin, it’s one way the city is trying to meet the growing demand for deeply…

Thursday, May 11, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Council Member Flannigan seeks to revise Austin’s drainage fee system

For much of her life as a homeowner, Joan Reames never noticed the drainage charge on her monthly utility bill. That was until the city revised the system in 2015. Reames said the monthly fee for her condo complex suddenly…

Wednesday, May 10, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Austin’s Visitor Impact Task Force nearing deadline to report to City Council

For the past several months, Austin’s Visitor Impact Task Force has been exploring new uses for the millions of tax dollars brought in by the city’s hotels. The group also has to contend with a host of state and local…

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