Round Rock Edition | December 2021

which lies directly north of the pro- posed facility, said during the roughly two-hour meeting they felt the com- pany had gone about acquiring the property and getting community input in the wrong order. “If you buy Amazon, and you’re against this, you need to vote with your dollar,” Round Rock resident Terry Meyers said. Meyers, along with other residents, said she had no idea Amazon was interested in the property until she read information from the neighbor- hood association. Other residents said the informa- tion presented at the meeting seemed curated to provide a specic impres- sion of the project. In addition to city sta, around 60 community members attended the meeting and requested additional information at a future meeting to avoid what they described as a lack of transparency. Residents requested any plans for infrastructure improvements to the area that would be part of the project, as they said the area around CR 172 and McNeil Road already suers from high levels of trac. Amazon ocials also provided site and project specics that were not previously indicated on the compa- ny’s planned unit development appli- cation submitted to the city of Round Rock Oct. 22. “The planning department looks forward to working with the sur- rounding neighborhoods and Amazon to address concerns expressed at the recent meetings,” said Brad Wiseman, Round Rock’s planning and develop- ment services director. “We appreci- ate the neighbors’ involvement in the process and Amazon’s willingness to request annexation into the city. Our sta will address potential impacts as part of the development process in an eort to make the project the best it can be.” The future of the project Breaux said the facility represents a preliminary $250 million in capital improvements to the property, and that construction would not begin for another three to ve years. She also said Amazon ocials are seeking to get the property annexed into the city limits—a mutual goal of the company and city—citing addi- tional property tax revenue and reg- ulatory oversight as benets. “We are subject to all of the rules and regulations of the city of Round

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we’re proposing a planned unit devel- opment, or a PUD,” Brown said, and added project leaders are proposing a PUD with a base zoning district of light industrial. Although Amazon representatives have said the facility is still several years from construction, residents living in neighborhoods adjacent to the acreage gathered in Novem- ber to voice their frustrations about a process they said has not been transparent. Apotential Amazon facility While indications from Amazon and the city of Round Rock point to construction of a new distribution center and warehouse within the next ve years, those involved in the proj- ect are divulging few details. “What we’re proposing is a ware- house and distribution development,” said Jessica Breaux, Amazon’s man- ager of economic development. “But, it’s not actually for immediate devel- opment. What I mean in that case is that we are looking at long-term options.” While the project is still early on, additional details provided in the PUD application state the structure will be at least 120 feet in height. The property is not located within Round Rock city limits, but it does lie within the city’s extraterritorial juris- diction and is a former parcel of the Robinson Ranch property. Representatives of Kimley-Horn and Associates, a planning and design engineering rm involved with the project, have declined to comment on the application and additional project details. Daniel Martin, Amazon’s regional public relations manager, also said the company would not comment on sites of future facilities. Round Rock ocials have not yet approved the rezoning request, but Amazon representatives met with the Chisolm Valley Neighborhood Associ- ation on Oct. 11 and the Greater Round Rock West Neighborhood Association on Nov. 1 Tamping public frustrations During a Nov. 1 meeting between representatives of Amazon and mem- bers of the GRRWNA, residents shared their frustration with news that the company purchased 193 acres at Rob- inson Ranch. Residents of Round Rock West,

Residents living within the Greater Round Rock West Neighborhood met with city ocials and Amazon representatives Nov. 1 to voice their concerns. (Brook Sjoberg/Community Impact Newspaper)

RESIDENT CONCERNS 1. 2. Greatly increased trac to the area

Amazon project leaders have been meeting with Round Rock residents for several weeks. Residents’ concerns over a potential new facility include:

3.

Perceived lack of transparency about Amazon’s plans before purchasing the land

Lack of details known about plans for infrastructure improvements

While not much is known about the proposed Amazon facility, some details have been shared by Amazon ocials in community meetings.

PROJECT DETAILS

POTENTIAL WORKFORCE The proposed warehouse is planned to be located in the southern half of the property, closer to SH 45.

No entrances or exits will go along McNeil Road due to a Union Pacic Railroad line in the area.

Amazon seeks voluntary annexation into the city of Round Rock.

The project is expected to bring additional jobs and trac to the area, but not as much as other possible uses for the facility, Amazon representatives told those in attendance at a community meeting.

Number of people the facilities will employ 8001,200 $15 per hour The starting wage for Amazon employees

$250 million

The amount Amazon plans to make in capital improvements to the property

SOURCE: AMAZONCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Rock,” Breaux said. “That includes all of the development standards, screening, driveway requirements, landscaping, drainage, all of those things. That also includes behavioral ordinances. If there’s an issue, you can call the city of Round Rock, and they will come and be able to enforce those ordinances.” Amazon will not seek any tax abatement from the city of Round Rock, meaning all property tax would stay with the city instead of being

rebated, she said. “We’re going to nail down our use to make sure that nothing else will be able to be built there, or this can be used for anything else that might be really unfriendly next to the neigh- borhood,” Brown said. Amazon has not provided any additional information on next steps.

For more information, visit communityimpact.com .

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