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Land Development Code

Council looks to increase height allowed under VMU zoning

City Council last Thursday took a step toward addressing housing affordability, passing a resolution to allow greater building height in areas zoned Vertical Mixed-Use (VMU). The code change would create VMU2, a new zoning category that allows 90 feet of…

An appeals court will hear arguments over Austin's land code rewrite. Here's what the case is about.

I can understand if your eyes glaze over at the mention of a “land code rewrite.” But whether you asked for it or not (and likely you didn’t), if you live in Austin, a case being heard this week in…

Zilker substandard lot case sparks debate at Board of Adjustment

An appeal to grant a variance to homebuilders on Kinney Avenue raised questions of precedent and procedure at the Board of Adjustment meeting this past Monday. On behalf of property owner Molly Development Company, applicant Ian Ellis sought the board’s…

Green infrastructure pushed as remedy to stormwater pollution threats

An Austin-based environmental group is pushing City Council to approve a plan to protect area waterways from pollution through changes in building requirements that would promote stormwater retention. On Wednesday, Environment Texas delivered petitions with roughly 1,000 signatures to Council…

Housing and Planning Committee examines barriers to ADU construction

The city’s Housing and Planning Committee met Tuesday to discuss the regulations for accessory dwelling units, secondary housing units located somewhere on a residential lot. As Austin’s housing crisis persists and the median sale price of homes continues to rise, ADUs…

Fee changes to Downtown Density Bonus Program delayed until November

City Council and boards and commissions will have to wait until November to see the latest proposal on adjustments to the costs developers will have to pay to avoid adding affordable housing units to downtown development projects. Staff members were…

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Music, arts proponents renew push in land use code for creative spaces

Music and creative proponents are renewing a push to change the city land use code to make it easier for live music venues and other creative spaces to open throughout the city. The Music Commission voted unanimously last Monday in…

West Campus sign variance remains on hold after illuminating discussion

Once again, an accidental ban on illuminated signs has forced developers to seek a variance from an unintentional city statute.  Current city code prohibits illuminated signs in the University Neighborhood Overlay (UNO). While the prohibition was made in error, it…

BoA postpones parking variance for want of a better hardship

Parking requirements could threaten the affordability of a North Central Austin apartment complex. But finding no hardship – aside from the Land Development Code itself – Board of Adjustment members have asked for more information to better consider a variance…

City mistakes and heritage tree pave the way for East Austin variance

Unaware that it was prohibited by city code, Daniel Salazar carefully nestled his new home against his back property line. The project was approved by the city and the mistake was not identified until after the structure was built.  As…

Bill that would have revived Land Development Code dies in session

It wasn’t on the city’s legislative agenda, but a bill that would have empowered City Council to move forward with a final vote on a revised Land Development Code died in a House committee, giving neighborhood advocates another victory over…

A 'modest' proposal: Lake Austin lot seeks variance

Citing excessive constraints on their land, one Lake Austin property owner went to the Board of Adjustment Nov. 9 seeking a break that would allow them to move forward with building a home. Eric Gomez, representing owner Malia Muir, said…

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