S Congress Advisory Group Update 11/7/11


TO:             Staff & Members of the South Congress Advisory Group (SCAG)

FROM:       SRCC Neighborhood Representatives to SCAG

Sarah Campbell, Mary Lovell, Matt Lynaugh

DATE:         November 4, 2011


On Tuesday, November 1, 2011, from 6-7:30 pm, the 3 SRCC Representatives to the SCAG held a meeting, attended by 23 residents within 3 blocks of South Congress, to review the 25 Ideas created by the SCAG.  We took the liberty of sorting the 25 Ideas under headings that Larry Schooler presented at the SCAG’s last meeting — see the attached listing as well as the flyer we used to generate attendance.

Note the attendees’ votes for each Idea to the left of or below the Idea number.

Not surprisingly, we spent most of our meeting time on RPP.  We were told unequivocally NOT  to support any changes to or dilution of the expedited RPP trade-off to the neighborhood that the City offered in exchange for accepting VMU up-zoning on South Congress.

It has become very clear to us that the long discussions about RPP in the SCAG meetings have been about the residents giving up the only leverage we have to obtain parking relief.  We will need to discuss this issue again at the meeting on Tuesday, November 8th.

Residents also offered the following:

o Investigate the towing option — created by Charlottesville, VA to assist residents with cars blocking driveways — for implementation in Austin.

o People have been observed parking within the S. Congress area and then taking the bus to town.  We assume their cars stay the whole work day.

o The parking problem on S. Congress is a safety, quality of life, transportation AND  parking issue — force other solutions besides changes to the residents’ RPP.

o The process being used with SCAG does not address the complexity of the issue.

We respectfully request a spot early on the agenda for the November 8, 2011, SCAG meeting so that we may discuss these findings further with the whole Group.We respectfully request a spot early on the agenda for the November 8, 2011, SCAG meeting so that we may discuss these findings further with the whole Group.


Attachement #1 Sorted List of 25 Ideas:

S Congress Advisory Group’s


Ideas for Solving Parking Problems

as of 10/20/11

*  Numbers correspond to enumeration of Ideas as generated by SCAG 

No Brainers

Y    *1.  Paint curbs on the blocks we are discussing on either side of driveways as well              as corners.

Y     2.  Step up police enforcement of violators, at least on weekends, first Thursdays               and events.

Y     6.  Enforce site plan and event requirements for parking, security, trash, etc.

Residential Parking Permit Program (RPP)

11. Consider the underutilization of 24/7 RPP.

N    19. For all streets but S Congress, create resident-only parking on one side of the                street 24/7.

N    20. Have 50% coverage for RPP.

21. Have 2-hour parking limits in affected RPP areas (the Berkeley model).

22. Have more flexible hours with RPP besides 24/7, for example, 5 pm to 2 am.

Employee Parking

Y    12. Have City partner with CapMetro and local businesses to offer eco-passes to                  employees; get commitments from employees to use.

Y    13. Remote parking via shuttles for employees.

N    15. Allow employee passes in RPP areas.

Y    18. Create evening shuttle for weekend nights, first Thursdays, events from                          One Texas Center and shopping center (Twin Oaks, Ace Mart).

Remote Parking

Y     3. Install bike racks in certain parking areas (well-lit, safe rom betting                                bumped by cars).

Y     7. Improve CapMetro service between downtown and S Congress.

Y    12. Have City partner with CapMetro and local businesses to offer eco-                                passes to employees; get commitments from employees to use.

Y    17. Remote parking via shuttles for patrons.

Y    18. Create evening shuttle for weekend nights, first Thursdays, events from                       One Texas Center and shopping center (Twin Oaks, Ace Mart).

Meters/Pay Stations

8. Enforce current 2-hour parking limits along S Congress.

25. Have metered parking on S Congress and into the neighborhoods to                                certain extent.

Yikes.  Overall it looked like the neighbors are opposed to meters, though many expect at some point. And only in conjunction with RPP.

Additional New Parking

Y     4. City to build a parking garage

14. Use parking lot of former church on West Gibson

16. Waive moratorium on ’04 development parking garage so it can                                     be increased sooner.

Abstain.  What is BCNAs feeling on this?


5. Consider the effects of proposals for S Congress on S 1st too (because it                          also is becoming a successful retail strip).

N    9. Signage “Be Nice to Your Neighbors” or Be Considerate of Residents, etc.

This did not work before, apparently done in the past.

10. Expand this study to include S 1st.

23. Set up a transportation work force or committee.

24. Allow electric vehicles for hire to ferry up and down S Congress, like exist                      downtown.

o   We ran out of time and did not address items 14, 5, 10, 23, 24

o   23 neighbors in attendance.

o   12 have had their driveways blocked.

o   Increase in car thefts (former officer said this, name?)

o   Danette said that Expedited RPP is in the Land Use Code and residents should be         able to apply at ANY time.

If you’re interested in joining the neighborhood listserv, go to;

 HYPERLINK “http://groups.yahoo.com/group/SouthRiverAustin/” http://groups.yahoo.com/group/SouthRiverAustin/If you want to know more about the SCAG, go to;https://www.srccatx.org/categorysouthcongressavenue/If you want to know more about the Residential Parking Permit Program, go to;http://www.ci.austin.tx.us/transportation/respark_permit.htm

Attachment #2 Flyer:




WHAT: One hour meeting

WHO:  Residents on streets within 3 blocks east of

S Congress

WHEN:  Tuesday, November 1 at 6pm

WHERE:  Mary Lovell’s home

1401 S Congress, enter from driveway on East Gibson

(walk if you can)

WHY:  Three of your neighbors are working

on your behalf as SRCC representatives

to the S. Congress Advisory Group.

We want to know what you think

of what the Group has come up with so far.

HOW:   Go to https://www.srccatx.org/

Click on South Congress Avenue under

Categories on right side of page.

See two articles on S Congress Advisory Group.

Mary Lovell’s  phone 282-2818, email  HYPERLINK “mailto:scongressegibson-1@yahoo.com” scongressegibson-1@yahoo.com


















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