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Stories by Syeda Hasan

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…

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…

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…

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…

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…

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…

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…

Friday, April 28, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Judge orders Cross Creek Apartment complex to make repairs

For years, residents of the Cross Creek Apartments in North Austin have been complaining about poor living conditions. They say they continue to pay rent while living with broken windows, poor security and a lack of hot water, among other…

Wednesday, April 12, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Council members consider ways to refine Strategic Housing Plan

In recent weeks, the release of Austin’s first-ever strategic housing plan has faced scrutiny as well as garnered support at public meetings. The plan aims to address the city’s growing affordability crisis by setting goals for new housing production. Tomorrow,…

Monday, April 10, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Austin launches initiative to redesign Congress Avenue

For Austin visitors, it’s hard to beat the iconic view of the Texas Capitol from Congress Avenue. But for those who live and work along the corridor, the streetscape could use some improvements. On a Friday afternoon, about a dozen…

Monday, April 3, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Austin plan sets goals for more affordable housing. But where should it go?

City Council is set to vote this week on whether to adopt the city’s first-ever housing plan. The plan aims to address Austin’s growing affordability crisis by setting goals for new housing production. But apart from encouraging more affordable housing,…

Wednesday, March 29, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Austin parks groups propose new uses for hotel tax funds

Several groups made their cases for funding last night at a meeting of the Visitors Impact Task Force. The board is charged with exploring new uses for hotel tax revenue before a decision by City Council. Board members heard from…

Friday, March 17, 2017 by Syeda Hasan

Rainey Street traffic study calls for less parking, more pedestrian crossings

Last year, residents of the Rainey Street neighborhood struck a deal with a developer looking to build new condos in the area. They agreed to conduct a comprehensive traffic study, determining what the most pressing transportation needs are and how…

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