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Tip Sheet: Planning Commission 1-13

Tuesday, January 13, 2015 by Elizabeth Pagano

The City of Austin Planning Commission meets at 6 p.m. Tuesday. In the interest of saving space, we will not publish the entire agenda here. It is available on the City’s website.

Items of interest include:

3. Plan Amendment: NPA-2014-0009.01 — Waller on Swede Hill Location: 908 E. 15th Street, 807 E. 16th Street, & 1506 Waller Street, Waller Creek Watershed, Central East Austin NPA Owner/Applicant: WJP Swede Hill, LLC (Wes Peoples) Agent: Kenneth T. Blaker Request: Multi-Family and Single Family to Mixed Use land use Staff Rec.: Recommended

Monitor’s Take: Though we haven’t written about this, and in actuality know very little about the case, the backup file is full of opposition from Swede Hill residents, and we do know that they turn out to speak against projects they oppose. Developers of this one, which looks to be a high-end Mixed Use project, might learn that tonight as well.

8. Rezoning: C14-2014-0111 — 4500 Speedway Location: 4500 Speedway, Waller Creek Watershed, North Hyde Park NCCD, Hyde Park NPA Owner/Applicant: Navid Hoomanrad Agent: Husch Blackwell, LLP (Alexandra Jashinsky) Request: SF-3-NCCD-NP to NO-NCCD-NP, with an Amendment to the North Hyde Park NCCD Staff Rec.: Recommended with Conditions

Monitor’s Take: The case that launched 1,000 acronyms is back, and after a strong suggestion from City Council, developers have modified their request to what staff had recommended previously. It remains to be seen whether that will sit better with neighbors concerned that the original request was attempting an end-run around process safeguards, which we wrote about here.

20. Final Plat with Preliminary: C8-2014-0233.2A — Lightsey 2 Location: 1805 Lightsey Road, West Bouldin Creek Watershed, South Lamar NPA Owner/Applicant: Lightsey Two, LLC. (Ryan Diepenbrock) Agent: PSW Homes (Casey Giles) Request: Approval of the Lightsey 2 composed of 16 lots on 4.02 acres. Staff Rec.: Disapproval

Monitor’s Take: Though this is just the final plat for the Lightsey 2 project and shouldn’t be too dramatic, it’s worth noting (even if only because this would mark the first time the project was considered without drama at a commission.) For those who are curious, or have time on their hands due to what appears to be a sedate Planning Commission meeting, the history is recounted below.

Here is a take on what happened last time, from the perspective of disappointed neighbors. We’ve written about this case here, here and here. Though we’d thought we had seen the last of it, the Planning Commission has opted to put it back on the agenda for possible reconsideration at their last meeting. In order to play it safe, developers have taken the novel step of resubmitting an identical preliminary plan, which is also on today’s agenda. Because the neighborhood’s complaints — at least the convincing ones — involved procedural missteps, the resubmittal could allow the developers to go through the process again with a clean slate.

23. Site Plan -Variance: SPC-2014-0175A — Red Bluff Hotel Location: 4701 Red Bluff Road, Lady Bird Lake Watershed, Govalle/Johnston Terrace Combined NPA Owner/Applicant: Red Bluff Partners, LLC (Jordan Ford) Agent: Big Red Dog Engineering (Ricardo de Camps) Request: To approve three (3) variances from the Waterfront Overlay: 1) Section 25-2-721(B)(1), which prohibits parking areas and structures within the primary setback; 2) Section 25-2-721(C)(1), which permits only “fountains, patios, terraces, outdoor restaurants and similar uses” within the secondary setback; and 30 Section 25-2-721(C)(2), which limits the impervious cover in the secondary setback to a maximum of 30 percent. Staff Rec.: Recommended Staff: Michael Simmons-Smith, 512-974-1225,; Planning and Development Review Department

Monitor’s Take: While we haven’t discussed this case per se, we thought it might be worth noting that there is yet another hotel in Austin’s future. This one is a 50,000 square foot hotel located on the site of the short-lived East Side Tubes tube and kayak rental that was shut down by the city.

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