SRCC Meeting Minutes — June 2019

Minutes
SRCC GENERAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING  (www.srccatx.org)
Monday, June 3, 2019     7:15 PM
LIFE IN THE CITY UNITED METHODIST CHURCH (formerly Grace UMC)
205 E. MONROE, AUSTIN, TEXAS

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AGENDA

To be sure you get a vote, become a member. You can join or renew online www.srccatx.org. Not sure if you are current? Email membership@srccatx.org and we’ll let you know.

CALL TO ORDER/APPROVAL OF MINUTES

1.  7:15  Meeting procedures, etiquette, welcome newcomers. Verification of quorum. Reminder: state your name when presenting or seconding a motion. If an acronym is stated during the meeting and you don’t know what it means, please feel free to raise your hand and ask.*   

Presenter throughout: Eric Cassady, SRCC President, president@srccatx.org, unless otherwise noted. (8 min)

Meeting called to order at 7:21.  President reviewed meeting procedures & etiquette.  We have a quorum tonight.

2.  7:23  Membership and voting. Pay multiple years in advance and get a discount. Single membership: 1-yr $20;  2-yr $35; 3-yr $50 / Family membership: 1-yr $35; 2-yr $65; 3-yr $95 NOTE: In order to vote or make motions, dues must be paid a month in advance, with the exception that if a former member’s dues have  lapsed no more than 2 years, they may renew at the meeting and be eligible to vote.     (2 min)

President reviewed voting requirements.

3.  7:25  Treasurer’s Report – see reverse of agenda. All reports available upon request to the Treasurer treasurer@srccatx.org  

Presenter: Oliver Caruso (Treasurer) (5 min)

Treasurer reviewed income and expenditures for last month.  Contact him to get details at treasurer@srccatx.org.

4.  7:30  Committee Chairs reports

1) Planning and Zoning-see items below; 2) Historic Preservation; 3) Finance; 4) Mobility–see item below; 5) Public Safety;  6) Parks and Environment–see items below; 7) Schools; 8) Communications; 9) Executive Committee; 10) Land Development Code Rewrite ad hoc committee

Representatives: 11) ANC*; 12) SCC*; 13) South Central Waterfront–see item below; 14) St. Edward’s; 15) S. Central Affordable CDC (20 min)

  • Planning and Zoning:  Chair for the P&Z committee referred a message about the Norwood House to Wolf Sittler. Everything is progressing.  A new, large project at the corner of Riverside & I-35 want to build a floating kayak deck. The committee received notice regarding RV and Mobile Homes land development code for the city.  H.E.B. has been on everyone’s radar. The Chair suggested that we invite them to share their plans for the renovation and the temporary site (during renovation) will be in the Twin Oaks Shopping Center.  Another committee member will speak later.
  • Historic Preservation:  The Chair reported that the application for the National  Historic District designation has been turned in and likely to be approved.  Go to HistoricTravisHeights.org  for more information.  Approval will occur either in October or February.  The committee is looking at ways to inform the public about the styles we have here in TH as well as general preservation information.  The Preservation Committee is seeking new members. If interested in joining the committee or with questions, contact reed.as@gmail.com
  • Finance:  Nothing to report.
  • Mobility:  We are still seeking a mobility chair.  A neighbor has shared a mobiility update regarding the preliminary South Congress traffic/parking study. This information will be shared on the SRCC website.
  • Public Safety:  The Chair shared that there is still a need for drivers for neighborhood watch for evening hours. Contact the chair at tgroce71@gmail.com
  • Parks and Environment:  The Chair reported that Renee Barrera died in April and there was a memorial yesterday to honor him and his work  Rene was a long-term SRCC resident who has been involved in many environmental projects throughout the city. A neighbor asked about a bill regarding camping in public areas that the city is considering.  There were questions about whether this would apply to any public place, such as Stacy Park and whether Kathie Tovo has provided information. The vote is scheduled for Thursday morning, and a news article shared that the decision might be made in a closed-door meeting.  The SRCC President suggested that individuals who are concerned should attend the meeting this Thursday. Meanwhile he will research for more information. This can then be made an agenda item for an upcoming meeting.
  • Schools:  Nothing to report.
  • Communications:  Nothing to report
  • Executive Committee Update:  Nothing to report.
  • Land Development Code Re-Write Ad Hoc Committee:  We don’t have a chair for this ad hoc committee at this time.  A member who has been involved reported that transect areas are being resurrected and seems to be on a fast track with the city.  Neighbors who are interested are meeting. Membership is encouraged, especially if you live near a major road (such as South Congress).  If interested in getting involved, email the president@srccatx.org.  This Wednesday’s meeting will be held at Claudette Lowe’s house at 7 pm.
  • ANC:   The Chair shared that he went to his first meeting and met members. https://www.atxanc.org
  • SCC:  Nothing to Report.
  • St. Edwards:  Nothing to Report
  • South Central Waterfront:  Our representative reported that the developers for the Statesman Tract presented to the organization and stated that there may be more news coming this summer.
  • SCA CDC:  Our representative shared that the organization discussed the possibility of the  HEB properties be considered for affordable housing at either location.

5.  7:50  Approve minutes from the May 6, 2019 monthly general meeting (available at www.srccatx.org) (5 min)

Oliver Caruso/Betty Weed to approve the minutes from the May 6, 2019, monthly general meeting.  For: 24, Opposed: 0, Abstaining: 0

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

6.  7:55  The Little Stacy Park construction project continues to progress, and is scheduled to complete this summer. The construction team had previously received concerns about trash being left on site and have asked the contractor to take a little more effort to see that all trash is cleared at the end of each work day from the site.

Link to project website with information about the overall construction project. Presenter/Guest: Brendan Wittstruck, Director of Urban Design, asakura robinson, Brendan@asakurarobinson.com              (5 min + 5 min Q&A)

Mr. Wittstruck reported that work is still occurring.  It was disappointing that a robbery occurred on the site.  A log is being kept of any incidents at the site. All of the rain has put things a little behind schedule, but also has allowed some changes to be made to the plan in response to observations made during construction.  The project is on pace to be completed by mid-July. The pool is anticipated to open on June 10th, with access limited due to other parts of the park. (Restrooms, however are closed.) The tennis courts’ surface needs to cure, so its completion will likely occur a few weeks after the rest of the project is done.  Due to limited budget, new plantings are limited. PARD has found funding to work on renovation of the ___, which includes preservation of some historic fixtures and a new roof. A neighbor pointed out that the renovations look like something that would be appealing to young skateboarders. Another neighbor expressed concern that young children be playing in a place where they would be protected from potential older children.  Mr. Wittstruck shared that age groups were considered and parts of the park are compartmentalized with that as a consideration.

7.  8:05  On behalf of the Blunn Creek Partnership David Todd has submitted a grant report on the use of funds from the SRCC for native groundcover restoration in Blunn Preserve. The project has been completed, and it involved the propagation and installation of nearly 1500 plants of a variety of native prairie grasses, as well as an additional mix of grass and wildflower seed. Link to Blunn Creek Partnership Grant Report. Link to Blunn Creek Partnership photo album.

Presenter: David Todd, SRCC Parks and Environment Chair, dtodd@wt.org (10 min)

The Parks and Environment Chair shared information about a grant received from SRCC to support the groundcover restoration of Blunn Preserve.  The Chair shared basic information about the location and size of the preserve. Historically, exotic/invasive plants have flourished in the Green Belt.  Over the past ten years, those invasive and non-native plants have been removed. This past year, a lot of work has been done to plant native grasses and spread wildflower seeds. As a consequence of the more natural habitat being restored, moths and butterflies as well as birds have returned to the preserve. A neighbor asked about how to enter the preserve, and the Chair pointed those points out on the map.  Any visitors to the preserve are encouraged to stay on the trail, as poison ivy and chiggers are in the preserve.

NEW BUSINESS 

8.  8:15  In 2018 neighbors on Braeswood near St Edward’s University implemented the Residential Permit Parking (RPP) program. Woodleigh is a short street which connects Braeswood to Woodward, and it is experiencing parking problems as well. These neighbors are asking for SRCC to support an application for RPP on Woodleigh. [VOTE EXPECTED]

Link to RPP application and map.

Presenter/Guest: Troy Carter, Woodleigh Resident, troydc@gmail.com (10 min)

Mr. Carter and Ms. Moerbe shared details about the RPP being requested and that neighbors have signed off. 

Motion:  Vickie Moerbe/ Sara CampbellTo approve the RPP along Woodleigh from the corner of Woodward to the corner of Braeswod.  26/0/0

9.  8:25  The South Central Waterfront Advisory Board (SCWAB) initiative is intended to guide development on the 118 acres of this area, across the lake from downtown. There is a need to put in place a financial framework and regulating plan for the South Central Waterfront Redevelopment plan before granting any additional entitlements to any property in the planning area. This will likely be a joint effort between the SRCC and Bouldin neighborhoods, along with City staff.  [VOTE EXPECTED] 

Link to letter from Bouldin N.A. regarding entitlements within the S. Central Waterfront area. 

Presenter: Wendy Todd, SRCC Representative to SCWAB, wendypricetodd@gmail.com; Gretchen Otto, SRCC Member, gretchenotto7@gmail.com (10 min)

Ms. Todd shared that we have endorsed this plan previously.  Ms. Otto reported that the CDC has become more involved in development along the waterfront in order to support the plan for affordable housing.  Money from developers can be put in a fund to be used to support affordable housing. The process has been very slow and the city has not been proactive in developing a financial framework and regulating plan for the South Central Waterfront Redevelopment plan.  Ms. Otto requests that SRCC composes a letter similar to the one submitted by the Boulding NA. consider next steps, which would entail appointing a member to represent SRCC in this work. Ms. Todd expressed concern that public interests be represented in the plans that are developed, and not just the interests of the city and developers.

Motion:  Gretchen Otto/David Todd:  To send a letter to the mayor, city council, and city staff encouraging them to follow the steps for implementing the South Central Waterfront Vision Framework Plan adopted by the City of Austin in June of 2016. 25/0/0

Discussion included questions about the existing plan.  This letter is not to change the plan, but to encourage them to follow it.  (Available online.) A neighbor discussed the possibility of changing the plan to requiring developers to have affordable housing within their developments since land is limited.  Further discussion was regarding to using land from the city to create affordable housing and how to manage the money from developers for affordable housing. Gretchen and Wendy can add to/edit this section.  The appointment of a representative will be discussed at an upcoming Executive Committee Meeting.

10.  8:35 There is a Land Development Code amendment under consideration to provide limited allowances for off-premise signs at public education facilities and transit facilities in the public right of way.  There are some concerns about the appropriateness of advertising at these sites. [VOTE EXPECTED] 

Link to notice of proposed LDC amendment.

Presenter: Sarah Campbell, SRCC Planning & Zoning Committee Member, secampbell1949@gmail.com (5 min)

Ms. Campbell shared information about a notice she received  regarding an amendment to the Land Development Code be amended to  allow signs for advertising at education and transit facilities. Ms. Campbell proposed writing a letter questioning or opposing the amendment.  A neighbor suggested finding out what ANC’s position is. Other neighbors expressed concern over advertising in spaces for public use, the standards to be set for this advertising, safety for transportation due to distractions, fundraising for the schools.

Motion;  Sarah Campbell/ Thano Hasiotis  To oppose the proposed amendment to the land development code.  19/1/6

11.  8:40 The Outdoor Music Venue (OMV) permit for The Whip In is up for renewal. Last year prior to the issuance of the OMV, a representative from The Whip In came to an SRCC meeting and shared some of the changes that were being made to mitigate sound in the neighborhood. In that meeting SRCC voted to allow music until 10 p.m. on 7 days a week. The renewal application is asking for music until 10 p.m. Sunday – Thursday and until 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. [VOTE EXPECTED] 

Link to The Whip In 2019 OMV application.

Presenter/Guest: Mohammad Walid, The Whip In General Manger, hellowhipin@gmail.com         (5 min + 5 min Q&A)

Shane Hook, Manager at The Whip In came forward to request a renewal.  The new permit, is extending the time to 11 pm rather than 10 to allow time for breaking down the musician’s equipment and the stage equipment.  The change would only impact Friday and Saturday night. Neighbors suggested that the neighbors who are most directly impacted be contacted.  

MOTION:  Gretchen Otto/Cynthia Milne  To support the previously approved hours for the permit (7 days a week, 10 am to 10 pm.)  23/0/1

Neighbors expressed concern over extending the hours.  The VP of SRCC shared that extending hours requires approval from the NA (per CoA).  

12.  8:50 A journalist is working on a story about the continued development of South Congress Avenue and how this ongoing growth has affected the surrounding neighborhoods, including SRCC. 

Presenter/Guest: Emma Freer, Community Impact Newspaper, efreer@communityimpact.com (5 min)

Ms. Freer introduced herself.  She is writing a report about the development along South Congress Avenue and how it has affected our neighborhood.  She would love to hear from you if you would like to share. She left business cards. You can contact her (see email above).

GENERAL ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • Travis Heights Art Trail is scheduled for November 2-3, 2019. Charlotte Bell has more information – contact her at charwolf100@gmail.com .
    • Contact her regarding artwork on boxes at every traffic light.  (Examples along 1st Street)
  • Artist Selection for the Little Stacy Neighborhood Park Art in Public Places Project will occur in the next 2 months.  If you are interested in representing the neighborhood please contact Marjorie Flanagan at Marjorie.flanagan@austintexas.gov.  Attendance at 1-2 four hour meetings and online application review will be expected. A neighborhood representative is encouraged!
  • VOLUNTEERS NEEDED! We need volunteers for several open positions including
    • MOBILITY COMMITTEE CHAIR
    • AREA COORDINATOR – AREA 4A
    • OUTREACH COMMITTEE MEMBERS/CHAIR
  • SRCC is restarting the NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH program, and are looking for participants. Anyone interested should contact Tom Groce, SRCC Public Safety Chair at tgroce71@gmail.com to get involved! 
  • Greater South River City Neighborhood Planning Contact Team members are stewards of our 2005         Neighborhood Plan.

Meeting adjourned at 9:13 pm.

*Frequently used acronyms: ACF: Austin Community Fund; ANC: Austin Neighborhood Council; SF: Single Family zoning category; FLUM: Future Land Use Map; GSRC NPCT: Greater South River City Neighborhood Planning Contact Team, NCCD: Neighborhood Conservation Combining District; SCC: South Central Coalition of Nas

Agenda Prepared by Dan Fredine, vicepresident@srccatx.org 

Agenda subject to change. Please check www.srccatx.org for most updated version.


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