Oak Hill whiners FLUMmoxed

So if you bother to move to the outskirts of Austin, you must be doing so to get a big house on a big lot on a quiet street, close to “good” schools, for much cheaper than Central Austin. If you do so, you have no right to complain that you can’t walk to the store.

Well, people in Oak Hill and Southwest Austin apparently want their cake and to eat it too. As much as I am an avid proponent of denser development and public transit, I find it disingenuous of the community leaders in that area to now start blaming the Save Our Springs ordinance for the fact that their neighborhoods aren’t (and may never be) more pedestrian friendly and dense.

Tomorrow night, the city’s planning staff will present the tentative Future Land Use Map (FLUM) and plan documents to stakeholders for one last discussion before the planning commission and city council vote on it. David Richardson, who lead the effort at the neighborhood level, complains to Community Impact that the SOS ordinance blocks any and every kind of good development because

landowners cannot develop or put impervious cover, which is anything from rooftops to parking lots, over more than 25 percent of an individual landowner’s property, in the area called the contributing zone.

Mr. Richardson complains that you can’t put in denser muliple-use development that would make walking and biking more appealing because of the “roadblocks” like this.

The SOS ordinance *should* be a roadblock. Its intent is to discourage development, which causes water pollution in the sensitive contributing zone and the more sensitive recharge zone of the Edwards Aquifer. If you want to live in a densely developed area, move to Central Austin!

4 Comments so far

  1. m1ek on May 14th, 2008 @ 9:01 am

    That’s a very good point – but don’t expect the Oak Hillers (or Circle C’ers) to be convinced. They’ve been banging this drum for a very long time – David Richardson especially.

  2. triman on May 14th, 2008 @ 10:29 am

    Hey, lets clear zilker park and build a real golf course on it, buggy drives, fences to keep the common people out. After all I live downtown, why should I have to drive to a golf course when all I want to do is drive at a golf course…

    Just kidding…

  3. Barton Springs Relief | Austin Metblogs (pingback) on May 15th, 2008 @ 9:49 pm

    […] may have read my post earlier this week about Oak Hill’s neighborhood plan.  Well, what happens in Oak Hill and Southwest Austin affects the treasure that is the aquifer and […]

  4. The Waste of Haste | Austin Metblogs (pingback) on June 6th, 2008 @ 10:08 am

    […] This morning, I read on News 8 Austin’s site that some 200-year-old oak trees were “accidentally” cut down in Oak Hill over the weekend.  This is so tragic.  Apparently a subcontractor mistakenly cut down these trees to help in the preparation for a new apartment complex.  How could anyone possibly look at those trees and not think,  “Hey, maybe I should double-check to see if this is right” before cutting down some massive and probably incredibly beautiful trees???  Sheds some more light on what Oak Hill is getting itself into by advocating for more dense development out there (as discussed in my post from May 13th). […]

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