Central Austin Edition - October 2021

CENTRAL AUSTIN EDITION

VOLUME 13, ISSUE 12  OCT. 25NOV. 21, 2021

ONLINE AT

Austin behind in goal for aordable housing as need, costs increase

P R O G R E S S R E P O R T

The Austin Strategic Housing Blueprint aims to build 135,000 homes across all income levels, including 60,000 aordable units, between 2018-2028. By the end of 2020, the city had added 25,964 units.

IMPACTS

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BY BEN THOMPSON

Four years ago, Austin ocials set a goal to make the city a more aordable place for current and new resi- dents to live by 2028. However, by the end of 2020, the city had reached 12% of its 10-year goal to ensure tens of thousands of new homes and rental units would be available to those earning less than the area’s median income, according to a city report released in September. City sta, housing advocates and others have pointed to the city land development code, last revised in the early 1980s, and the time and cost for any new develop- ment these days as key reasons for the lagging progress. “Status quo is a failure for the city of Austin,” said Greg Anderson, an Austin Habitat for Humanity repre- sentative and University of Texas lecturer. “It will only get worse moving forward.” CONTINUED ON 36

NEW UN I TS ADDED, 20 1 8 - 20

R EMA I N I NG UN I TS NE EDED, 202 1 - 2 8

Election Day Nov. 2

80,000 70,000 60,000 50,000 40,000 30,000 20,000 10,000 0

A family of four making $79,100 OR LESS ANNUALLY in the Austin area is considered low-income.

56,176

XXXXXXX VOTER INFORMATION

XX 19

33,098

19,762

18,824

238

6,902

30% AND BELOW

31%80%

81% AND ABOVE

HOUSING AFFORDABI LITY LEVEL BY MEDIAN FAMI LY INCOME

SOURCES: CITY OF AUSTIN, HOUSINGWORKS AUSTINCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

DARK SKIES LAW

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In June 2020, four months after announcing 2019 broke its passenger count record, the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport issued a bleak projection: it could take until 2024 to climb back to its pre-pandemic passenger levels. The total number of passengers reached its low point in April 2020 at 47,781 passengers, a 97% decrease compared to April 2019. ABIA was hardly alone, as the entire airline indus- try grappled with a signicant downturn in passengers. However, ABIA did prove unique in how fast it has seem- ingly recovered, according to data from the city of Austin Aviation Department and Bureau of Transportation Statis- tics. The most recent federal data available shows passenger trac 20% lower in June 2021 than the same month in 2019, compared to a 15% drop at ABIA. CONTINUED ON 38 Airport expansionplans takeo as regioncontinuesgrowing BY BENTON GRAHAM

A I RPORT PAS SENGER GROWTH SOARS Despite pandemic-related passenger decreases, indicators show it is still possible to hit 31 million annual passenger by 2037 projected in the 2019 master plan.

TOTAL AUSTIN PASSENGERS

1999 3.3million

2019 17.3 million

2037 31 million

BUSINESS FEATURE

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Airport opens

Pre-pandemic baseline

Projection in pre-pandemic master plan

SOURCE: CITY OF AUSTIN DEPARTMENT OF AVIATION COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

DINING FEATURE

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The more you feed the blob the bigger it gets becoming a monster clog causing expensive repairs, foul odors and sanitary sewer overflows! Fat, oil and grease comes from food like cooking oil, meat drippings, butter, sauces, gravy, dairy products, and even salad dressing. Help stop the Grease Blob! 6 Scrape food scraps into the trash or compost if you can 6 Collect cooking oil in a container then toss into the trash 6 Use paper towels or wipes to remove grease. DON’T FLUSH , toss them into the trash WASTEWATER AVERAGING You are in control of your wastewater costs for the next year STARTING Mid-November ENDING Mid-March Find your wastewater averaging period and start saving today! www.austintexas.gov/department/ wastewater-averaging

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

Curious what is selling in your neighborhood? Scan me

ACTIVE

ACTIVE

ACTIVE

ACTIVE

realtyaustin.com/p/4106149

realtyaustin.com/p/6731330

realtyaustin.com/p/5583163

realtyaustin.com/p/9779804

$1,100,000

$1,200,000

$1,290,000

$1,950,000

2 bds

2 ba

1,271 sq ft

3 bds

3 ba

2,430 sq ft

3 bds

2 ba

3,030 sq ft

3 bds

3.5 ba 2,046 sq ft

98 San Jacinto Blvd #806, Austin, TX 78701 Jennifer Berbas | 512-655-3830

2417 Euclid Ave, Austin, TX 78704 Robert Kellogg | 512-748-3548

3001 Oakmont Blvd, Austin, TX 78703 Christina Balderas | 512-797-4968

900W Live Oak St, Austin, TX 78704 Kelvin Glover | 512-400-6035

PENDING

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realtyaustin.com/p/2964154

realtyaustin.com/p/9535654

realtyaustin.com/p/7364788

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$599,999

$600,000

$675,000

$4,800,000

2 bds

2 ba

1,284 sq ft

3 bds

2 ba

1,560 sq ft

2 bds

2.5 ba 1,665 sq ft

3 bds

3 ba

4,397 sq ft

1407 North St #A, Austin, TX 78756 Karl Haussmann | 512-422-4000

2806 Moreno St, Austin, TX 78723 Katherine Sokolic | 512-809-3497

3005 Lovell Dr #B, Austin, TX 78723 Ramirez Team | 512-240-2810

300 Bowie St #4201, Austin, TX 78703 Wafeeq Alalawi | 512-626-6488

SOLD OVER ASKING

SOLD OVER ASKING

SOLD OVER ASKING

SOLD

realtyaustin.com/p/1713664

realtyaustin.com/p/7108008

realtyaustin.com/p/5578234

realtyaustin.com/p/2296477

$725,000

$849,000

$1,050,000

$1,590,000

2 bds

2 ba

1,582 sq ft

2 bds

2 ba

1,447 sq ft

3 bds

3 ba

1,887 sq ft

3 bds

2.5 ba 2,280 sq ft

811 Keasbey St, Austin, TX 78751 Corazón Team | 512-843-3572

2514 Friar Tuck Ln, Austin, TX 78704 Lisa Hill | 512-775-7233

1609 Willow St, Austin, TX 78702 Ryan Gamble | 512-791-8641

1604 Palma Plz, Austin, TX 78703 Scott Joffe | 512-638-2701

I f you ’re scratching your head wonder ing why your home i sn’ t receiv ing of fers , we’ve got answers . Why Isn’t My Home Selling?

Scan the QR code to read the most common reasons a home doesn’t sel l .

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CENTRAL AUSTIN EDITION • OCTOBER 2021

Toast our newmodel homes. And new beginnings!

Join us in celebrating our newmodel homes in Easton Park. Celebrate the opening of Brookfield’s three beautiful new model homes at Easton Park on Saturday, November 6 from 10am – 12pm! Enjoy some bubbly or warm apple cider while you snack on brunch bites. Make your own caramel apples and enter to win a Yeti backpack cooler. Tour our homes (even be the first to see those with the Tesla Solar Roof), steal some style ideas, and enjoy this low-key celebration, on us! RSVP at brookfieldtx.eventbrite.com.

RSVP Today

Floor plans, pricing and more at brookfieldtx.com

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

THIS ISSUE

ABOUT US

Owners John and Jennifer Garrett launched the rst edition of Community Impact Newspaper in 2005 with three full-time employees covering Round Rock and Pugerville, Texas. We have expanded our operations to include hundreds of employees, our own printing operation and over 30 hyperlocal editions across three states. Our circulation is over 2 million residential mailboxes, and it grows each month with new residents and developments.

HIGHLIGHTS FROMTHISMONTH

FROMDEEDA: Oh my gourd we’re growing! We’re happy to announce the launch of two new editions serving the San Antonio metro area. These will be our 33rd and 34th editions nationwide. We’re excited to continue building communities of informed citizens. It would not be possible without your readership, so thank you. Orange you glad you get CI in your mailbox? Ok, enough Mom jokes! Deeda Lovett, GENERALMANAGER dlovett@communityimpact.com

Community Impact Newspaper teams include general managers, editors, reporters, graphic designers, sales account executives and sales support, all immersed and invested in the communities they serve. Our mission is to build communities of informed citizens and thriving businesses through the collaboration of a passionate team. Our core values are Faith, Passion, Quality, Innovation and Integrity.

FROMDARCY: At the heart of every Austin story is the rapid growth our city is experiencing. This month we looked at how that aects the airport and food trucks. How is your neighborhood growing? We’d love to hear from you. Darcy Sprague, EDITOR dsprague@communityimpact.com

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BUSINESS &DINING Local business development news that aects you

TRANSPORTATION &DEVELOPMENT Regular updates on area projects to keep you in the know

SCHOOL, CITY & COUNTY We attend area meetings to keep you informed

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CORRECTION: Volume 13, Issue 11 In the Voter Guide on Page 28, Proposition 8 does not include an age requirement for spouses of deceased armed service members to receive exemptions on homestead property taxes.

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CENTRAL AUSTIN EDITION • OCTOBER 2021

Breathe deep and take the leap! Explore new interests and build new friendships with Varsity Generation! Now offering interesting classes and fun events for Austinites 50+. From day hikes and yoga, to movies, line dancing and art. Try something new! austintexas.gov/varsitygeneration

Programs, events, and services for adults 50 and above.

Keeping you CONNECTED to all the places you live, work, and play

Whether you drive, take the bus, bike, or walk, the Mobility Authority has a path for you. Our roadway network connects residents to everything they love about Central Texas. More reliable travel, for any way you travel. What drives you, drives us. www.MobilityAuthority.com

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

IMPACTS

Businesses that have recently opened or are coming soon, relocating or in the news

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Bloody Rose Boutique

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20205 FM 685, Pugerville. The bakery oers made-to-order decorated cakes and cookies as well as signature cinnamon buns. 512-599-4047. www.pourshop.com RELOCATIONS 6 Airship Syndicate will relocate its headquarters to 2700 W. Anderson Lane, Austin, in early 2022. Currently located at 8500 N. MoPac, Austin, the move takes the Austin-based video game developer back to its original location and expands the space where it began as a small company of fewer than 10 employees. “We’re going back, but this time taking 13,000 square feet with room for up to 75 in-house employees,” company President Ryan Stefanelli said. www.airshipsyndicate.com ANNIVERSARIES 7 American bistro Austin Terrier will celebrate its 10th anniversary on Nov. 15. The business specializes in gourmet pizza,

burgers, sandwiches and salads, and it also serves craft beer, wine and signature cocktails at 3435 Greystone Drive, Austin. 512-369-3751. www.austinterrier.com 8 Bloody Rose Boutique will celebrate its fth anniversary in November. The boutique launched a mobile business in 2016, selling goth, punk and alternative fashions. It now operates out a North Austin storefront at 100 W. North Loop Blvd., Ste. I, Austin. www.bloodyroseboutique.com IN THE NEWS 9 eMD Access , Austin Regional Clinic’s subscription-based telemedicine service, announced Sept. 22 a new partnership with digital pharmacy Capsule. It will allow eMD Access members to receive same-day home delivery of prescribed medications within selected two-hour windows. ARC has numerous locations across Austin, including ARC Far West at 6835 Austin Center Blvd., Austin. www.emdaccess.com

NORTH CENTRAL NOWOPEN 1 Archetype Boxing opened in October at 2700 W. Anderson Lane, Ste. 203, Austin. The boxing club welcomes both experienced and rst-time boxers with tness classes that include heavy bag rounds, boxing ring practice, speed bag training, and strength and conditioning. 512-551-3178. www.archetypeboxing.com 2 Brooklyn Breakfast Shop , known for its popular South Austin food trailer, opened a new ghost kitchen location Oct. 4 inside the Prep ATX commercial kitchen space at 1300 E. Anderson Lane, Bldg. D, Austin. The kitchen serves breakfast sandwiches as well as a lunch menu featuring burgers and fried chicken sandwiches for pickup and delivery. www.brooklynbreakfastshop.co 3 Locally owned archival agency Monocurate opened in late July at 4413 Spicewood Springs Road, Ste. 216,

Austin. Monocurate oers services for families and businesses with both online and in-person appointments available. The business archives historical photos, documents and stories through material preservation, genealogical research, content curation and more. 512-991-2727. www.monocurateatx.com 4 Bird Bird Biscuit opened a second location at 1401 W. Koenig Lane, Austin, on Oct. 18. Like the original Bird Bird Biscuit on Manor Road, it specializes in fried chicken biscuits and other comfort food items. It is owned by Austin locals Ryan McElroy and Brian Batch, who also own Thunderbird Coee and New York- style pizzeria Love Supreme. 512-761-4922. www.birdbirdbiscuit.com COMING SOON 5 Pour Shop , a bakery owned by pastry chef April Saldana, will open at 7413 Burnet Road, Austin, this fall. It will join Pour Shop’s original location at

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CENTRAL AUSTIN EDITION • OCTOBER 2021

IMPACTS

Businesses that have recently opened or are coming soon, relocating or expanding

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COURTESY LINCOLN VENTURES

appointments. 512-713-1099. www.swishsmiles.com 4 Tingy Remix opened Sept. 30 at 2602 Guadalupe St., Austin. It is the rst Austin location for the South Texas-based burrito joint. Tingy serves tacos, burritos, burgers and more. 512-904-0012

renovated South Building at 1111 W. Sixth St., Austin. Previously located in the One American Center at 600 Congress Ave., the 90-year-old law rm primarily rep- resents clients in the petroleum industry. 512-495-6000. www.mcginnislaw.com ANNIVERSARIES 8 Texas Performing Arts is celebrating its 40th season of performances during 2021-2022. TPA will feature a range of performances this season, including the Broadway hits “Hamilton” and “Hadestown” at the organization’s agship theater, Bass Hall, 2350 Robert Dedman Dr, Austin. www.texasperformingarts.org 9 Wu Chow will celebrate its ve year anniversary in November. The restaurant serves “farm-fresh, modern Chinese food,” with dishes from eight dierent styles of Chinese cuisine. Dim Sum is available on Sundays. Wu Chow is located at IBC Bank Plaza, 500 W. Fifth St., Ste. 10 P. Terry’s Burger Stand reopened its downtown Austin location Oct. 18 after being closed since mid-2020 during the coronavirus pandemic. Located at 515 Congress Ave., Ste. 130, the burger joint’s facilities were refurbished during the closure. The Austin-based burger chain has been in business for nearly 20 years, serving burgers and fries using all- natural ingredients. 512-473-8722. www.pterrys.com 168, Austin. 512-476-2469. www.wuchowaustin.com IN THE NEWS

DOWNTOWN

SABINE ST.

www.ocialtingy.com COMING SOON

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5 New bar and restaurant Uchiba will open in fall 2022 inside Block 185 at 601 W. Second St., Austin. The new location from Hai Hospitality will serve as the second location for the modern Japanese concept, which launched in Dallas. Uchiba’s menu will include craft cocktails, Japanese whisky, yakitori grilled dishes and more under the leadership of James Beard Award winner chef Tyson Cole. www.haihospitality.com 6 80 Rainey , a new multifamily condominium project, is set to break ground in downtown Austin next summer. Developer Lincoln Ventures is behind the project, which will include approximately 644 units across 49 stories as well as 6,023 square feet of food and beverage space and a cocktail lounge. According to the developer, the project will also preserve the bungalows currently located 78 Rainey St. and 84 Rainey St. Completion is expected in summer 2025. www.lincoln-ventures.com RELOCATIONS 7 McGinnis Lochridge moved its headquarters in September to the newly

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dishes, including clam chowder and lobster mac ‘n’ cheese. Daniel Beck, the chain’s president, said this summer that the chain was searching for a second Austin location and anticipates further expansion in Texas. 512-428-4006. www.masonslobster.com/locations/ austin-tx 3 Swish Dental opened a new agship oce at 201 W. Fifth St., Ste. 175, Austin, on Oct. 18. The business oers general dentistry services, cosmetic dentistry, sleep apnea therapy and more. Swish says it prioritizes “comfort vibes” by providing eye masks, access to Netix, plush blankets and Beats headphones during

1 Evergen Equity opened an oce at 221 W. Sixth St., Austin, on Oct. 1. The real estate investment strategy rm focuses on multigenerational investments and wealth preservation through separately managed accounts. 512-515- 3333. www.evergenequity.com 2 Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls opened Sept. 30 at 200 Congress Ave., Austin. The restaurant serves lobster rolls and other New England-style

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The creators of Ramen Tatsu-ya opened Tiki Tatsu-Ya on Oct. 4

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SOUTH CENTRAL

FEATURED IMPACT NOWOPEN The creators of Ramen Tatsu- ya, brothers Tatsu and Shion Aikawa, opened Tiki Tatsu-Ya on Oct. 4. The bar oers tiki-style cocktails and small bites, both with a Japanese inuence. The bar, located at 1300 S. Lamar Blvd., is designed to feel like a tropical jungle. www.tiki-tatsuya.com

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SOUTH CENTRAL NOWOPEN 1 A new Austin Bouldering Project opened in Westgate on Oct. 17 at 4477 S. Lamar Blvd #600, Austin. The location oers climbing space, training and yoga. This is the second location for the gym, which opened initially at 979 Springdale Road. 512-645-4633. www.austinboulderingproject.com COMING SOON 2 Freddo ATX , a beer, wine and coee bar located in a historic Victorian house at 2336 S. Congress Ave., Austin, will open in November. The Travis Heights coee shop will oer atbreads, baklava, and other Greek food. 512-599-4069. www.freddoatx.com 3 The Japanese grocery store Asahi Imports will open a second location at 3005 S. Lamar Blvd., Ste. B 105B in late

October. The store, owned and operated by Sally Matsumae, has one location at 6105 Burnet Road, Austin. The store oers a selection of Japanese grocery items, including snacks and household goods. http://asahiimports.com ANNIVERSARIES 4 Dog boarding and day care company Austin Dogtown celebrated its 15-year anniversary in fall 2021. The business, located at 537 Woodward St., is owned by Austin local Rebecca Brannian. Dogtown oers boarding, grooming and day care services. 512-535-4244. www.dogtownaustin.com 5 Local franchise owners Emmie Knox and Louis LeSassier celebrated ve years of business at Assisting Hands Home Care on Oct. 3 at 2906 S. First St., Ste. 103, Austin. It provides seniors and those with disabilities with services including meal preparation, medication or grocery pickup, and transportation to

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Austin Opera House , located at 200 Academy Drive, to be converted into multifamily housing and a music venue. The proposed project from property owner Spearhead Academy would create more than 100 housing units and tens of thousands of square feet of retail and open space.

appointments. 512-999-7379. www.assistinghands.com IN THE NEWS

6 Austin’s Planning Commission approved a redevelopment plan on Oct. 12 for South River City’s historic

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CENTRAL AUSTIN EDITION • OCTOBER 2021

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

IMPACTS

Businesses that have recently opened or are coming soon or relocating

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environmentally friendly practices such as rainwater harvesting, gardens, chicken rearing and composting. 512-481-0694. www.cosmiccoeebeer.com 4 Roto-Rooter Plumbing &Water Cleanup plans to open an Austin branch at 2324 Ridgepoint Drive, Austin, in late November or early December. The national chain oers emergency plumbing services, drain work, water damage cleanup and water heater repair. www.rotorooter.com 5 St. George’s Episcopal School broke ground on a new building at 4301 N. I-35, Austin, on Sept. 29. Called the Beinecke Building in honor of long-standing school board member Bridgette Beinecke, it is scheduled to open to students in January. 512-452-6063. www.stgeorges-austin.com 6 T3 Eastside , a new mixed-use oce and apartment building, will open at 1200 E. Fourth St., Austin, in summer 2023. The facility will include 92,000 square feet of loft-style, timber-built oce space and 15 residential units. www.t3eastside.com RELOCATIONS 7 Eective Spend , an Austin-based digital marketing agency, announced Oct. 14 its relocation to 2000 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Austin, the site of the locally famous “You’re My Butter Half” mural. The company plans to make some renovations to the building, but it will continue to maintain the mural, which was painted by local artist John Rockwell and encourages visitors using the artwork for photo-ops to donate to United Way. www.eectivespend.com

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ANNIVERSARIES 8 ForkLift Danceworks , based at 2023 E. Cesar Chavez St., Austin, will celebrate its 20th anniversary Oct. 28. The performance company partners with diverse groups to tell the stories of communities through dance, including sanitation workers, warehouse employees and others. The anniversary celebra- tion will take place at Umlauf Sculpture Garden and will feature several perfor- mance vignettes and a dance party for all attendees. 512-222-5287. www.forkliftdanceworks.org IN THE NEWS 9 CEO Elon Musk announced Oct. 7 that Tesla will move its headquarters to Austin from Fremont, California. Musk said he planned to make an “ecological paradise surrounded by the Colorado River.” He did not specify the location further, though a Tesla factory is under construction in southeast Travis County beside the Colorado river. www.tesla.com

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EAST AUSTIN NOWOPEN

shop at 500 San Marcos St., Ste. 105, Austin, on Sept. 23. Destroyer serves hoagies, including an elevated ham and cheese sandwich and a smoked turkey sandwich with burrata, green olive tapenade and garlic spinach. 512-655-3442. www.thebrewandbrew.com COMING SOON 3 Cosmic Coee and Beer Garden has begun construction on a new location at 1300 E. Fourth St., Austin, in the Plaza Saltillo area. According to partner Paul Oveisi, the space is estimated to open in mid-2022. Cosmic Coee and Beer Garden’s original location at 121 Pickle Road features a coee shop and outdoor courtyard with food trucks supported by

1 Canje , a restaurant serving Caribbean food, opened Oct. 5 at 1914 E. Sixth St., Ste. C, Austin. It is the latest culinary concept from Emmer & Rye Hospitality Group, which also operates several other Austin restaurants, including Emmer & Rye, Henbit, Hestia, Kailmotxo and TLV. Chef Tavel Bristol-Joseph leads Canje’s kitchen with a menu featuring cuisine from his native Guyana and various Caribbean islands. www.canjeatx.com 2 Wright Bros Brew & Brew launched a new sandwich shop, Destroyer Sandwiches , inside the coee and beer

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CENTRAL AUSTIN EDITION • OCTOBER 2021

Come explore our wide open spaces and unique amenities like The Treehouse park, The Run dog park and The Cove pool complex. You’ll soon discover everything here has been developed - or left undeveloped - to make room for the good life!

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TODO LIST

October & November events

COMPILED BY OLIVIA ALDRIDGE

OCT. 0131

GET SPOOKY HALLOWEEN BY DESIGN

Annual fundraiser Halloween by Design invites Austin residents and business owners to decorate their home or oce door for Halloween and submit photos to HBD’s decor contest. Entries cost $10, with proceeds going toward the Shade Project and To Cure a Rose Foundation. Also through the end of October, HBD partners with We Are Blood for the We Want Your Blood drive to boost the Central Texas blood supply. Multiple locations. www.halloweenbydesign.com

Pumpkin Nights features a Halloween themed trail, a re show and other family events.

COURTESY PUMPKIN NIGHTS

COURTESY HALLOWEEN BY DESIGN

WORTH THE TRIP ThruOct. 31 PumpkinNights Pumpkin Nights, a Halloween- themed adventure experience, runs through the end of October at Northeast Austin’s Pioneer Farms. Visitors can travel along a half-mile walking path through six “magical pumpkin-themed lands,” see entertainment by re dances, buy professionally carved pumpkins and eat food from local vendors. 6 p.m. Free (age 3 and under), $14-$16 ( ages 4-12), $18-$23 (adults). 10621 Pioneer Farms Drive, Austin. www.pumpkinnights.com

OCTOBER THROUGH 31 BOOK IT TOALITERARYFESTIVAL The annual Texas Book Festival continues through the end of October with both online and in-person events at venues including the Austin Central Library and Symphony Square. Free. Various locations and times. www.texasbookfestival.org 28 CELEBRATEMUSIC ICONS Austin City Limits will induct three acts into its Hall of Fame: Wilco, Alejandro Escovedo and Lucinda Williams. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. $150 and up. ACL Live at the Moody Theatre, 310 W. Willie Nelson Blvd., Austin. www.acl-live.com 29 THROUGH 30 GO FARMTO TABLE The inaugural Field Guide Festival celebrates Austin’s local farm-to-table food systems. The two-day event includes a farmers market, live music, urban farm tours, educational classes, wine tasting and food from local chefs. Times vary. $45-$300. Fiesta Gardens, 2101 Jesse E. Segovia St., Austin. www.eldguidefest.com NOVEMBER 02 VOTE ON ELECTIONDAY Austin voters have the opportunity to weigh in on two city ballot propositions pertaining to public safety and parkland as well as several state propositions. Early voting ends Oct. 29. Polls are open on Election Day from 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Learn more at communityimpact.com/voter-guide-2021. 05 THROUGH07 CHECKOUT AUSTIN’S FOOD SCENE Austin’s annual Food & Wine Festival is back after a year o in 2020, presenting three days of food and drink oerings and cooking and grilling demonstrations from

local chefs. Local restaurants, including La Vacher, Suerte, Uchi and Wax Myrtle’s, will be represented. $275 and up. Republic Square Park, 422 Guadalupe St., Austin. www.austinfoodandwinefestival.com 06 WALK FOR A CAUSE The Huntington Disease Society of America’s South Region will host the Austin Team Hope Walk, a grassroots fundraising event to raise money supporting people who live with the fatal brain disorder. The event is one of 100 walks occurring throughout cities in the United States. 9 a.m. Martin Middle School, 1601 Haskell St., Austin. ART STUDIOS The annual Austin Studio Tour will take place across three weekends in November. A self-guided tour around Austin’s many art galleries includes special artist installations. Free. Multiple locations. Times vary. www.hdsa.org 13 SUPPORT PUPS INNEED The Austin Humane Society will host its annual Rags to Wags gala— including a cocktail hour, auctions and a seated dinner. It will benet Austin animal shelters. 6:30 p.m. Sponsorships start at $500. The Fairmont, 101 Red River St., Austin. www.ahsragstowags.org 18 THROUGH 21 SEE SHAKESPEARE, BOLLYWOODSTYLE Austin Shakespeare will present the play “Twelfth Night” performed in the Bollywood style, with music by local artist Nagavalli and choreography by Prakash Mohandras. 7:30 p.m. (Thu.-Sat.), 3 p.m. (Sun.). $24 and up. The Rollins Theatre at the Long Center, www.south.hdsa.org 06 THROUGH 21 EXPLORE AUSTIN’S

The event will be held in the Marktplatz building.

COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER STAFF

Nov. 0514 Wurstfest Visit New Braunfels for Wurstfest, which started in 1961. Visitors will nd German food, music, dancing, carnival rides and games, special events and entertainment. German, Texan and domestic beer will be available. 11 a.m.-midnight (Sat.), 11 a.m.-10 p.m. (Sun.), 5-10 p.m. (Mon.-Thu.), 5-11 p.m. (Fri.). $18 admission. 120 Landa St., New Braunfels 830-625-9167 www.wurstfest.com

121 Pickle Road Austin, Texas 78704

6015 Dillard Circle #B Austin, Texas 78752

701 W. Riverside Drive, Austin. www.austinshakespeare.org

www. cruxcc .com

Find more or submit local events at communityimpact.com/event-calendar. Event organizers can submit local events online to be considered for the print edition. Submitting details for consideration does not guarantee publication.

13

CENTRAL AUSTIN EDITION • OCTOBER 2021

Austin City Council District Map Through 2031

The city council district map for 2022-2031 will be in place starting November 1. With the help of Austin residents, the Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission drew the electoral boundaries in five months. Find which city council district you live in at: REDISTRICTATX.ORG

14

COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TRANSPORTATIONUPDATES

COMPILED BY BENTON GRAHAM

Capital MetroOKs $255Melectric bus investment inAustin

Running on battery The 40-foot-long buses go slightly further, with an average of 114 miles per charge, compared to 95 miles per charge for the 60-foot-long buses. Capital Metro plans to charge them in the depot as well as on their routes.

ONGOING PROJECTS

LEVANDER LOOP

183

MONTOPOLIS BRIDGE

O L O D

Capital Metro’s board of directors unanimously approved the $255 million purchase of 197 electric- powered buses frommanufacturers Proterra and New Flyer during its Sept. 27 meeting. According to a Capital Metro press release, the purchase represents the largest procurement of electric vehicles in U.S. history. The transit agency has a total of 424 buses currently with 12 of those being electric. The buses will roll out over the course of the next ve years, according to Capital Metro documents. They will have vinyl seats with USB ports, a perimeter seating format and validators to

check tickets at all doors. Dottie Watkins, Capital Metro chief operating ocer, said the electric vehicles present numerous advantages including the reduction of greenhouse gases and air pollution. “It’s a much better environment, not just for our riding public, but for our community as a whole,” Watkins added. The buses will be able to travel between 95 and 114 miles per charge. Watkins said charging the vehicles will likely include a mix of on-route charging and charging at the bus depot, but Capital Metro is continuing to evaluate its long-term strategy. “With climate change as it is we really need to accelerate these types

OLDBASTROP HWY.

N

Montopolis bridge enhancements The Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority is considering taking ownership from the Texas Department of Transportation of the Montopolis bridge along US 183. The Mobility Authority would make improvements to the bridge. Timeline: Unknown Cost: $7.1 million Funding source: Mobility Authority

40-foot bus charge

60-foot bus charge

SOURCE: CAPITAL METRO COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

of purchases and investments,” said Pio Renteria, a board member and Austin City Council member. Capital Metro announced its zero emissions goal in 2019.

290

MOPAC

COLORADO RIVER

35

360

183

Electric scooter company Bird nowshows Capital Metro bikes in its app Scooter users in Austin might notice a new feature when opening the Bird app on their phones. The scooter company unveiled an integration Sept. 22 that shows the number of available bikes through Capital Metro’s bikeshare program, MetroBike. Once riders tap on the bike icon on the map, the BCycle app, now called MetroBike, will launch so that they can book their ride. Austin is one of the rst cities that will be able to use the feature, along with San Antonio, Los Angeles, Milwaukee and Oslo. A Bird spokesperson said in an email that Austin’s goal

290

N

71

Area leaders question I-35 design Travis County Commissioners and Austin City Council members sent letters to the TxDOT in September expressing concerns, including a need for decks and widened bridges, about designs for I-35. Timeline: anticipated construction to

The Bird app will show the location of MetroBikes. (Benton Graham/Community Impact Newspaper)

of having 50% of commuters get to work without driving alone by 2039 aligns with the company’s own goals. “Austin has a robust biking culture and is forward- thinking in its relation to micro-electric transportation,” the spokesperson added. MetroBike has 75 stations according to the Capital Metro website. Its pay-as-you-ride option costs $1 to start a ride and $0.23 for each minute. Bird operates a eet of 3,250 scooters in Austin that cost $1 to start a ride, $0.39 for each minute, as well as a $0.15 city fee, according to the Austin Transportation Department website.

begin late 2025 Cost: $4.9 billion

Funding source: TxDOT and Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization

ALL INFORMATION ON THIS PAGE WAS UPDATED AS OF OCT. 21. NEWS OR QUESTIONS ABOUT THESE OR OTHER LOCAL TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS? EMAIL US AT SWANEWSCOMMUNITYIMPACT.COM.

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CENTRAL AUSTIN EDITION • OCTOBER 2021

NEWS BRIEFS

Abridged stories from online

APD to no longer respond to some nonemergency calls

Sobering Center to separate patients by substance used

DEFINING NONEMERGENCY Crimes that meet the following criteria will no longer receive on-scene response from APD officers as of Oct. 1.

BY DARCY SPRAGUE

The Sobering Center opened a new dorm in October that will be used to separate patients based on what substance they used instead of gender, per a press release. The Sobering Center, located at 1213 Sabine St. in downtown Austin, is a co-funded operation of the city and county intended to serve as an alternative to jails and emergency rooms for publicly intoxicated individuals. “Someone using a depressant will likely need things like rest while those using stimulants will have more energy and be looking for ways to engage,” the Oct. 11 press release stated. The new dorm has couches, bean bags, crafts, television and other activities, according to the release. “If someone [can] intervene at the point that they’re clearly a threat to themselves, or to others, and they could be in a space where they could safely sober up and not lose their minds, it would make all the difference,” former Board Member Doug Smith said in the press release.

Types of crime subject to the change:

These crimes can be considered nonemergency if they meet these three standards.

BY DARCY SPRAGUE

• Animal services • Attempted theft of property • Burglary • Theft • Prostitution • Suspicious vehicle or person • Some vehicle crashes • Verbal disturbances

The Austin Police Department will no longer respond to the scene of some nonemergency crimes, Police Chief Joseph Chacon announced Sept. 29. Chacon said several types of crimes, including verbal disturbances, theft and prostitution, that are no longer an active threat to people or property should be considered nonemergency and reported to 311 or online instead of to 911. Residents who are unsure if their situation is an emergency should call 911. The new measure went into effect Oct. 1. Chacon said this change comes as growth within the city and staffing issues stretch APD’s resources thin. “We are trying to keep up with a rapidly growing city,” Chacon said. He said crime reports will still be taken, and the incidents will still be investigated despite officers not responding to the scene. He also said in limited cases civilian APD

Nonemergency: • Incidents are no longer in progress • The suspect is no longer on scene • No further threat to life or property

SOURCE: AUSTIN POLICE DEPARTMENT/COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

employees, such as crime scene experts, might respond. Chacon said the measure is not permanent yet, but he added the department may stick to the new model even after reaching full staffing levels depending on its success.

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

Austin’s land development code case back in court

Austin, Travis County, AISD look to build disaster hubs

DATE TO KNOW

NUMBERS TOKNOW

The disaster hubs would provide safe places for Austinites in an emergency.

NOV. 14 Oral arguments over

Austin’s land code will kick off before a panel of justices of the Fourteenth Court of Appeals in Houston.

400 the estimated number of hubs that would be needed 15 minutes the maximum amount of time it should take each Austinite to get to a hub once the plan is completed $1 million the maximum cost of retrofitting a location to be a disaster hub, though most will not receive complete upgrades

BY BEN THOMPSON

BY BEN THOMPSON

Austin’s appeal to a court ruling over the city’s contentious and long-delayed land development code rewrite is set to move forward later this fall. Since 2012, Austin’s attempt to rethink city rules for land use has taken many forms. The code sets parameters for development, such as the height of a building or the density of a project. A development code rewrite process, CodeNEXT, fizzled out in 2018 but was followed by a new version the next year. That eventually made it weeks away from a final City Council vote— before ending up the subject of the lawsuit that has held up movement since the early days of the pandemic.

After the fallout fromWinter Storm Uri in February left many without power or running water, Austin-area entities began looking to create a network of safe shelters for residents during disaster situations. At a joint meeting Sept. 24, Austin, Travis County and Austin ISD officials heard updates and voiced support for a process that could see dozens of local facilities improved and added to a network of resilience hubs—locations that could provide water, food, electricity or a place to gather in an emergency. The targeted spots include neighborhood schools, recreation centers, clinics, libraries and other government buildings. “These extreme weather events have really highlighted the need for accessible community spaces that can offer services to community members at the neighborhood and interpersonal

At issue in the lawsuit was whether city residents have a right to protest the widespread zoning changes proposed in the new code. The city holds that residents do not have this right, while a group of property owners who filed suit called Austin’s process illegal. A Travis County judge ruled against the city in March 2020, leading City Council to vote to appeal the decision weeks later. Oral arguments in the city’s appeal are set for Nov. 14 in front of the Fourteenth Court of Appeals. The debate will take place virtually.

SOURCE: CITY OF AUSTIN/ COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

level,” Austin Climate Program Manager Zach Baumer said. Growing the hub network will take additional time, funding and community input, Baumer said. Each hub could cost up to $1 million to renovate. The goal is to have a hub within a 15-minute walk of every resident. This would require about 400 hubs, according to Baumer.

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CENTRAL AUSTIN EDITION • OCTOBER 2021

AT THE CAPITOL Texas Legislature passes state, congressional redistricting bills

MAPMAKING 101 Unlike some other states, Texas relies on the state Legislature to redraw districts for the Texas House, Senate, congressional districts and State Board of Education every 10 years. The redistricting process must pass through the Legislature like any other bill.

1

Census published

Redistricting occurs on rst regular session after census is released, but due to timing, it occurred in special session in 2021

BY JISHNU NAIR

in the rst regular session following the publication of the U.S. census, the unique timing of the 2020 census meant that redistricting had to take place during a special session. The bills await Gov. Greg Abbott’s signature as of press time. If the Legislature had not drawn maps before the session ended, Abbott would have had to call another special session. According to the state’s redistricting website, the two basic requirements for the process are that districts must have as close to equal population as possible, and districts cannot limit voting based on race, color or language group. A 1973 U.S. Supreme Court case, White v. Regester, dened “equal population” as a plan where the most populous district has at most 10% more than the ideal district population—or the state population divided by the number of districts. Populations cannot be more or less than 10% of the ideal population, the redistricting website states. An additional constraint for state House districts is the “county line rule,” which says districts cannot cross county lines, unless population size demands otherwise. However, Murray said the process allows for redistricting committees to “crack” or “pack” populations so that a party can control most of the seats. “We’re the only state that gained two seats in the country,” Murray said. “There’s immense pressure [on Republican lawmakers] to do something.”

Texas lawmakers set the state’s legislative, congressional and State Board of Education districts for the next decade during the Legislature’s special session that ended Oct. 19. Texas saw growth in Hispanic, Black and Asian populations from 2010-20, according to the 2020 census. Texas’ growth resulted in two new U.S. House seats in 2021 for a total of 38 Texas representatives in Washington, D.C. Richard Murray, a political science professor at the University of Houston and former redistricting advisor to Texas’ Black legislative caucus, said minority populations also moved toward the suburbs— which could have inuenced how the maps were redrawn. “The minority populations have grown dramatically, but it has also dispersed,” Murray said. “There’s a lot of Black and brown ight to the suburbs, more than previous decades.” As of Oct. 16, Senate Bills 4 and 7 as well as House Bill 1, which redraw maps for the state Senate, State Board of Education, and state House, respectively, have passed in the House and Senate and await signage. Senate Bill 6, which redraws congressional districts, passed the Legislature on Oct. 19 following disagreements over amendments. A joint committee was called to work out the dierences. Changes to 2021 process While the Texas Constitution species the process must happen

Redistricting set on session agenda

2

Senate Redistricting Committee and House Redistricting Committee each draft separate maps, amendments

3

Senate votes on Senate committee maps and House votes on House committee maps

4

Senate votes on House committee maps and House votes on Senate committee maps

5

6

Maps reconciled between houses, sent to governor’s desk

IF GOVERNOR APPROVES

IF GOV. DOES NOT APPROVE

7

Governor vetoes bill

Governor signs maps into law

Legislature can overturn veto with two-thirds majority; if Legislature fails to overturn veto, a backup commission draws maps

Maps can be challenged in court

8

SOURCES: RICHARD MURRAY, UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON; TEXAS LEGISLATURECOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

One change removed preclearance, which the U.S. Supreme Court struck down in 2013, per the redistricting website. Part of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, preclearance required states with a history of racial discrimination to submit plans to the federal government for approval. Maps bring changes to Austin area State Rep. James Talarico, DRound Rock, announced Oct. 13 that he will run for state House District 50 instead of 52, his current district. “Republicans have gerrymandered me out of my district,” Talarico tweeted. “If they think they can keep me o the

House oor, they better think again.” Talarico said he will move into District 50. He said the changes to District 52 will force him out by “gerrymandering” it to be more Republican, a move he said also harms voters of color by splitting them into dierent districts. Celia Israel, the current District 50 representative, is not running for reelection in the House to run for mayor of Austin. Two new congressional districts will also be added, according to the maps, including one in Austin and the other in Houston.

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CENTRAL AUSTIN EDITION • OCTOBER 2021

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