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Code Advisory Group and CodeNEXT Consultants

Roger Stewart came to the CodeNext Advisory Group (CAG) meeting at Austin City Hall last Wednesday, one day after the City published the draft maps generated by the consultants working on the revision of Austin’s Land Development Code. A resident of southwest Austin, Stewart said he had some concerns about the maps . “It seems to be far too preservation oriented, trying to minimize growth and not really allowing growth in many parts of the city, Stewart said. He added that he’s concerned that CodeNEXT won’t help housing affordability issues enough because it is too restrictive on development.

CodeNext grew out of Imagine Austin, our comprehensive plan adopted by the City in 2012, and it set out some core principles and priority programs. One of those priority programs was the rewrite of the Land Development Code because it’s outdated. Five major priorities came out of Imagine Austin, mobility, affordability, environmental stewardship, permitting and processing and preserving community character.

HousingWorks Austin is in the process of studying the text and the maps produced by CodeNEXT. Specifically, we are examining what effect the changes might have, or fail to have, on affordability. You can join us at one of the CODE READINGS sponsored by HousingWorks and Austin Housing Coalition.

Like Roger Stewart, East Austin resident Hilary Andersen came to the CAG meeting after entering her address in the interactive zoning comparison tool on the City’s website. Anderson said, “I’m more curious than anything else about what the definitions were because I kinda live in between two corridors and it shifts from T3 parcels to T4 parcels and I don’t know what the rationale is for those.”

There are a total of at least two more public drafts of the code to come. One will be the commission draft that will be presented to the Land Use and Zoning and Platting commissions in late August, along with another version of the map. Then, the adoption draft of the code and map to be considered by City Council, possibly at
the end of 2017. All through this time the commissions and council staff will be taking input on the process. Residents are invited to attend one of the mapping Open Houses which were scheduled in all 10 council districts, or the Code Talk events, each of which is centered around the Imagine Austin priorities.  The public is urged to submit comments about CodeNEXT by the June 7th deadline.

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