Tag Archives: City of Austin Environmental Commission

Friday, June 19, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

Environmental Commission recommends Watershed Protection Department budget

Among the coronavirus pandemic’s many consequences is an impact on the Watershed Protection Department’s proposed budget for the 2021 fiscal year.Even with the decision to cut back in areas, the department is still proposing a $107.1 million operating budget for…

Wednesday, June 10, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

Springdale Farm development proposal lacks support due to environmental concerns

For over a year, Austin developer StoryBuilt has worked with the Govalle neighborhood to design a site plan for the 4.8-acre site that operates as Springdale Farm and Eden East at 755 Springdale Road. While the overall design for a…

Tuesday, June 9, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

City reworks its Community Climate Plan through an equity lens

Five years ago, Austin’s Office of Sustainability began implementing its 2030 Community Climate Plan in order to work toward the city’s goal of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Now, the department is revising its plan to update metrics and…

Tuesday, June 2, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

Environmental Commission says Public Works project ‘flies in the face’ of environmental regulations

In order to create easy access and support increased traffic headed to a new Habitat for Humanity development in Southeast Austin, the Public Works Department is working on constructing a road that crosses a “classified waterway.”Under city code, a classified…

Monday, April 27, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

Compromise reached at Lantana PCA, Environmental Commission recommends project

After postponing its recommendation on the project consent agreement at the Lantana project in Southwest Austin, the Environmental Commission has reached an agreement with the developer and the Save Our Springs Alliance on how to move forward.On Tuesday, the Planning…

Monday, April 13, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

City of Austin releases update on climate resilience plan

Resilience is a word that seems particularly relevant as Austin closes public spaces and dining institutions and limits gatherings in response to the spread of Covid-19. Although the city has yet to develop a holistic resilience plan that prepares the…

Tuesday, March 10, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

Watershed Protection Department debuts new pollution spills map

When the Watershed Protection Department went to renew the city’s permit to discharge under the Texas pollutant discharge elimination system this past year, it found new requirements. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality recently changed its rules to require cities…

Monday, March 9, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

Environmental Commission recommends city develop holistic resilience plan

In many respects, Austin city officials are striving to create an environmentally sustainable city. However, according to the Environmental Commission, the city is not as resilient as it needs to be.“Right now, we don’t have a resilience plan,” Commissioner Katie…

Wednesday, February 26, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

Environmental Commission postpones Lantana PCA to encourage compromise

On Feb. 19, the Environmental Commission heard from divided parties arguing their case for whether to recommend implementing a Project Consent Agreement at the Lantana project in Southwest Austin to allow for a mixed-use residential project rather than office space…

Tuesday, February 25, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

Environmental Commission recommends revising green building standards

Green buildings are intended to be superior constructions built with environmentally sustainable materials and design. While not required, the city encourages this type of construction on a voluntary basis through Austin Energy’s Green Building Program, which rewards builders for green…

Tuesday, February 18, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

Environmental Commission recommends a variance for 19 feet of fill

A developer building a commercial storage facility project requiring a variance for 19.5 feet of fill to construct a driveway on slopes steeper than a 15 percent grade received a unanimous recommendation from the Environmental Commission at its Feb. 5…

Wednesday, February 12, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

UT professor maps climate vulnerability in Austin

Communities within Austin are disproportionately affected by climate change based on their social vulnerability.Social vulnerability refers to a community’s sensitivity to natural hazards and community members’ capacity to rebound from natural disasters.In a study by Patrick Bixler with the University…

Monday, January 27, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

East Austin 2K-acre PUD gets unanimous seal of approval from Environmental Commission

The future of a decades-old sand and gravel mine just east of the Austin city limits on Harold Green Road is now clearer with the latest set of plans developers presented to the Environmental Commission on Jan. 15.Known as the…

Thursday, January 23, 2020 by Jessi Devenyns

Monetizing the carbon cycle may lead to ecological solutions

In the very near future, there is a possibility that Texas landowners will be able to reduce carbon emissions while earning money on their unused land.Jim Blackburn, a professor at Rice University and the president of the Trinity-Edwards Springs Protection…

Monday, December 16, 2019 by Jessi Devenyns

Environmental Commission pushes for additional tree protections on Apple campus

Apple Inc. is well on its way to bringing a billion-dollar campus to Austin on a 133-acre parcel of land at 6900 Parmer Lane called Robinson Ranch.In an effort to offer increased protections for the trees on the property, the…

Tuesday, November 26, 2019 by Jessi Devenyns

Land Development Code: Density and impervious cover

With the first reading of the new Land Development Code draft expected by Council in two short weeks, the Watershed Protection Department is working to finalize its recommendations.Despite the tight timeline, Environmental Officer Chris Herrington told the Environmental Commission at…

Friday, November 8, 2019 by Katherine Corley

Audubon Society recommends strategies to reduce bird deaths in Austin

At Wednesday’s meeting of the Environmental Commission, Christy Esmahan, a member of the Travis Audubon Board of Directors, reported that nearly 30 percent of North America’s bird population has vanished in the last 50 years, per a September 2019 study…

Tuesday, October 22, 2019 by Jessi Devenyns

Commission calls air quality motion a ‘vague statement,’ fails to pass it

Despite the philosophical support of commissioners, a motion to improve air quality at construction sites failed at the Oct. 16 meeting of the Environmental Commission.Commissioner Pam Thompson prepared a motion on the fly during a presentation by the Office of…

Friday, October 18, 2019 by Jessi Devenyns

Developer turns variance process upside-down, asks Environmental Commission for ‘feedback’

In an unusual request, development lawyer Richard Suttle with Armbrust & Brown appeared before the Environmental Commission on Oct. 16 to ask not for a site plan variance, but for feedback on a possible upcoming one.“I’m anticipating needing to come…

Monday, October 7, 2019 by Jessi Devenyns

Pioneer Crossing PUD changes course, adding parkland

Having passed through and received an approval recommendation from the Zoning and Platting Commission on Sept. 17 for its 14th amendment, the Pioneer Crossing planned unit development arrived at the Environmental Commission on Oct. 2.A 376-acre portion of the 1,410-acre…

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