Metropolis Council voted unanimously Thursday to approve a web site for the Daugherty Arts Heart, near the present ZACH Theatre at Butler Shores Park. The positioning, referred to as 1A, was not metropolis staffers’ first selection, nevertheless it was clear that staffers’ choice, 1B, had too many opponents, together with the Save Our Springs Alliance.
District 5 Council Member Ann Kitchen led the cost towards staffers’ most popular possibility, which might have taken up significantly extra parkland than the choice. SOS lawyer Bobby Levinski and SOS Government Director Invoice Bunch each urged Council to pick the positioning farthest away from the hike and bike path.
As Levinski famous in a letter to Council, “As a lot as Austin likes to market itself as a inexperienced oasis, we have now a severe parkland deficiency. We merely do not need sufficient parkland to serve our increasing inhabitants.” He mentioned a latest index confirmed that Austin ranked thirty seventh among the many largest American cities in assembly parkland wants for its residents. “With this angle in thoughts, it’s baffling to us that town is – but once more – contemplating changing a number of acres of prime parkland alongside Woman Chicken Lake into buildings and driveways for an artwork heart, together with a parking storage to accommodate extra single-family vehicles.”
SOS emailed its members earlier this week alerting them to the upcoming vote and asking them to contact their Council members and the mayor. Kitchen mentioned her workplace had acquired about 300 emails on the topic.
Town’s Parks and Recreation Board and the Environmental Fee each handed resolutions expressing their concern concerning the 1B possibility as a result of it could have taken up an excessive amount of parkland. The Barton Place Condominium HOA additionally wrote to inform Council its members supported possibility 1A.
Associates of the Dougherty Arts Heart, then again, wrote two letters, the primary of which didn’t say which web site it most popular. The second letter mentioned that staffers’ most popular possibility “finest addresses the number of visitors/parking issues expressed in previous conferences by stakeholders.”
Environmentalist Roy Waley additionally addressed Council concerning the matter, urging them to not use any parkland in any respect. He prompt repurposing some at the moment underused Austin Unbiased College District buildings.
Kitchen mentioned the scenario she selected preserves extra inexperienced house and avoids extra impervious cowl on parkland.
Parks and Recreation Division Director Kimberly McNeeley acknowledged the necessity to change staffers’ place, telling Council that possibility 1A was simply wonderful with them.
Kitchen’s movement included path to make sure that the brand new arts heart would maximize inexperienced house, enable for future enlargement plans, set up Riverside Drive as the first public ingress and egress, and handle challenges for folks choosing up and dropping off their children.
Staffers have been directed to do a visitors affect evaluation, with the aim of decreasing single-occupancy vehicular visitors on the slim Toomey Highway. The evaluation, Kitchen mentioned, ought to acknowledge heavy bike and pedestrian use alongside that street.
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