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Tuesday, August 15, 2017 by Elizabeth Pagano

There are still many, many aspects of CodeNEXT that Austinites are wrapping their heads around. At the most recent Planning Commission meeting, Chair Stephen Oliver took a minute to try and make one thing clear. “There may be a misconception, completely, that there’s just these giant doublewide highlighter markers on either side of the corridor and it might as well be in blood, and inside you are getting upzoned and outside you are safe. That has never been suggested by the consultant, by staff or this commission. It is a starting point for analysis. … There is no ‘transition zone’; it’s just like it is today – neighborhood up against commercial property line (in some cases),” he said. “That myth needs to be dispelled, because it’s damaging to the entire conversation and distracting.” Commissioner Nuria Zaragoza also took a minute to express an enduring concern about housing diversity throughout the city – even in West Austin, which she noted is virtually unchanged on current CodeNEXT maps. “West of MoPac, you could cut it out with scissors and it would look exactly the same,” she said. “I hope we could create a more balanced Austin than what we are seeing in many of our planning documents.”

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