SLNA Meeting 6/17/04
The meeting was called to order at about 7:00 by Kevin Lewis. Officers in attendance were Kevin Lewis, Carol Gibbs, Bill Stoughton, and Roberta Leahy.
· There will be a meeting next Tues. with Council Member Brewster McCracken, presenting ideas for improving Austin’s commercial design standards–everyone is invited.
· Numerous midday robberies have been reported recently in the neighborhood. Please call 311 to report any break-ins or attempted break-ins. The police keep a database of all that info which can be accessed through www.southlamar.org / Civic Resources / APD or directly at www.ci.austin.tx.us/police/crimeinformation .
· Melissa Kikta from Independent Digital Imaging & Archiving spoke about the personal property inventory and etching service they provide. It's good to have an inventory for insurance purposes, and it makes it easier to identify stolen items recovered by police. Call 965-3102 for more info.
· Walgreens Zoning Case: Kevin summarized the changes to the plan since our last SLNA vote (February). Highlights include:
· Developer has changed to footprint zoning.
· Developer has moved stormwater retention underground.
· Developer has agreed to sidewalks on both sides of Bluebonnet approx. 190 ft, and to Del Curto along Wong property with their permission.
· Developer has agreed to reduce the Bluebonnet lane widths from12’ to 10' to make room for bike lanes.
· Developer has increased the performance bond he’s willing to post, from original $15,000 to $50,000.
· They have repeatedly promised they will build Maria's and make the road improvements before starting on their building, and will pay 100% of the road improvements. (The legal implications/feasibility of this offer are being researched by City Staff, per ZAP asking if a developer is allowed to make improvements to property outside the bounds of their own project. Answer is still pending.)
· At the Zoning & Platting Commission hearing on 6/15, several SLNA members spoke out against the zoning case. Some spoke in favor. The ZAP voted in favor of the zoning change.
Discussion ensued, including:
· Possible mitigations that might manage the Bluebonnet traffic, including medians, curbs, signage, and driveway alternatives. The prevailing sentiment was, “this kind of business will just put too much traffic on an already overloaded neighborhood collector.”
· Uses we could support--shops, small businesses, offices, mixed use (with affordable residences on 2nd & 3rd floors). Preferable that only low traffic uses would access Bluebonnet. The City is telling us we need to accommodate more development in our neighborhood, and if we don’t encourage residential along the major transportation corridors, it will place even more pressure on the interior residential areas.
· The development of the trailer park project should be considered in context of the Wong property and other adjacent properties.
· Motion: “The South Lamar Neighborhood Association opposes Zoning Request #C14-04-0060, for a proposed Walgreen's store. SLNA remains committed to continue its dialog with the developer on the Walgreen's plan, in the event City Council does approve the zoning request.” Motion passed 14-0, with one abstention.
· A motion was passed unanimously that a “vote against zoning for Walgreens” is not a “vote against Taco Xpress,” and that SLNA residents want Taco Xpress to continue being an integral part of our neighborhood for years to come, even if the Walgreens deal fails.
Bryan briefly explained the Neighborhood Planning process and schedule for the South Lamar Corridor neighborhoods.
· Advisory group meetings will start at the end of this year. Formal meetings begin early next year.
· There will be workshops for citizen input for development...land use, zoning, determine current uses (commercial / residential / mixed use)...
· The way NP is being managed, the City will be the applicant, not the neighborhood associations. We may not agree with their vision, so we must get involved from the beginning so we can impact their decision-making.
· Watch the SLNA email postings for announcements of meetings, or contact Bryan King for details.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:50 p.m.