S 1st St – The more things change, the more they stay the same

It’s been a short 12-weeks since I wrote my first Austin met blog entry, and I’ve come to realize that while I see change all the time, actually it happens very slowly.

In my first post on the alterations of Chavez and access to the S 1st Bridge, I wondered if they were going to finish on schedule, they didn’t and still have not. I didn’t hear of any serious collisions between joggers and cars though, so thats good news.

The VMUification of S 1st still hasn’t taken its first step. While the buildings mentioned in the articles are new developments, neither is being done under the Citys much vaunted VMU classification. Not much progress has been made on either.

In my post on 603 W Live Oak, the former home of Las Manos Magicas, I said they were taking the house away. They jacked it up, cut it in half, put on trailers, tarped it and then found out they needed a permit. Who’da figured? So the house is still there. Permits are an interesting thing.

On the City Permits database(*), it’s interesting to note that a small new bakeshop, Sugar Mama’s will be opening soon next to Secret Oktober, and have been busy applying for permits to cover all their work. You can chart their progress and sign-up to the mailing list on their website.

Those that regularly eat at Polvos might not have noticed the changes going on there. It was only when I saw the permit application for the sign for Sugar Mamas and searched, that it became clear Polvos didn’t apply for one for the monster they installed mid-2007. It appears from City records they also didn’t apply for permits for the work thats being going one around the back and side of the restaurant either, although this is mostly out of sight of the dinners.

Parking continues to be a problem for Polvos and residents, on a good day for the restaurant, W Johanna for 2-blocks, S 2nd for 2 blocks is completely full with customer cars, and damage to cars in the streets is a regular happening from customers who either can’t parallel park, can’t reverse or have had too much to drink(nah surely not…). Interestingly, the parking for Polvos was a significant enough problem to have been called out in the 2002 Bouldin Creeek Neighborhood Plan for action(See action item 62-64). Who’da guessed.

When I moved in, the big yellow building at 2009 was empty, and so it will be again soon. La Luz moved in, and now they are moving out. According to signs on their myspace web page and in the store, La Luz will be shutting its doors and merging with Prototype Vintage Design on South Congress beginning early August!

The more things change on South 1st, the more they stay the same.

(*) When searching the permits database the best results can be found by lugging the street name in the the project name entry field. It’s also worth limiting the search by date at the bottom.

1 Comment so far

  1. lauratex on August 3rd, 2008 @ 10:40 pm

    Thanks for the permits database link… could come in handy! I rode by your place and Polvo’s when there were no cars in the parking lot and it sure does look bad… and obviously nothing has been done about that. There used to be problems with the bakery – the lights on at La Mexicana 24 hours.

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