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 Upper Boggy Creek Neighborhood Plan
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Chronology

P&Z Committee Chair elaborates on Building Permits and Variances
SF-3 is the Zoning category that applies to almost all residential properties in our area, which simply limits the occupancy to single family residences and, where there is at least 7000 square feet, duplexes and small detached residences ("Granny Flats or Garage Apartments); and for which certain code requirements are triggered. I think the "NP" is a newly imposed designation and refers to the fact that City Council has adopted the Upper Boggy Creek Neighborhood Plan, which 5 neighborhoods, including Cherrywood, comprise.

Here is the problem, and I want to be honest with you about what my own position may be on this, apart from what may be the position of others.

To my knowledge, there are basically three reasons for side yard setbacks (which are usually 5 feet, measured inward from the side property line. They are: 

(1) Utility easements. These easements are there to allow public or private utility companies to place and maintain various utilities. If you have one, you most likely will not be able to get this variance, even if the Neighborhood were to support you. Sometimes such easements exist but have no functional purpose; i.e. the electrical, telephone, gas, water, sanitary sewer or storm sewer line(s) for which they were intended were never placed or have been relocated. In these cases it is sometimes possible to have the easement vacated, and this can be a lengthy process (but worth it). If you have a survey of your property, it should show the easements, but sometimes they only show up after a variance request such as this triggers a search by the various city departments. 

(2) hen both residences build up to the setback, there is still always 10 feet between the vertical structures, and even if both structures have the maximum intrusion of roof overhangs into the setback (24"), there is still 6 feet between overhangs. Since most residential construction supports combustion, this means that fire can much more easily spread from one residence to another when these setbacks are not observed. This becomes especially important when one or both of the residences is unoccupied and thus there is no one to notice the fire when it starts. One remedy to this, in lieu of disallowing intrusions into the side yard setback is to require that any construction that occurs there to consist of noncombustible materials. With a carport, for instance, this could mean steel or aluminum columns, beams, joists, deck and roof. 

(3) To allow visual surveillance and access by law enforcement officers. Police use the spaces between buildings to see back into properties when they are looking for perpetrators of crimes; some who might be fleeing, others who may be trying to break in or peep in to residences. They can be more effective in catching bad guys and preventing break-ins when they can at least see, and preferably enter, these spaces between buildings. I think that this particular feature of setbacks is often defeated by legal privacy fences and thus is not usually cited as a basis for denying a variance, but it is one that the applicant and the adjacent neighbor need to consider when deciding whether to seek a variance to allow construction in a side yard. Of course a completely open (i.e. without walls) carport, if that is what you propose, would not violate this function of a setback. 

I personally favor the densification of the neighborhood and thus am personally not opposed to building closer together as long as the fire safety concerns and police surveillance issues can be accommodated in some way. But I do not get to decide these things, and some folks in the neighborhood do not agree with me on this. 

If you were not aware of these bases for the side yard setbacks, I hope this information is of help. As I mentioned, if your neighbor is in support, I think this would weigh heavily in the consideration of the Committee and The Neighborhood in whether to support the variance, as would consideration of the applicability of the functional considerations I mention above.

-Girard Kinney (Chair, P&Z)-

~  ~  ~

  • Setback requirements, by zoning district .
  • Residential building permit application .
  • City development review, information .
  • Planning and Zoning Committee Meeting Minutes for Thursday, August 23, 2001 (Mike Damal notes)
    Girard Kinney, Dorothy Wade, Brian Block, and Mike Damal Attended. 

    Three topics were discussed--Upper Boggy Creek planning efforts, Austin Energy substation, and anonymous letter received by the committee. 

       The efforts of the Upper Boggy Creek planning team were discussed. MD stated he overall highly supported the efforts of the team, although he has not been greatly involved due to scheduling conflicts. He noted the planning teams seem to be directed to get the neighborhood to ""approve"" higher density development--he is not directly opposed to this, his main concern is for quality ""street friendly"" development. MD is of the belief that market forces will drive the density--we should try to influence the quality and character (street, neighborhood friendly) development. MD stated he thought the CNA''s development guidelines should be at a minimum, incorporated into the Cherrywood section of the UBC design guidelines. The committee voted unanimously to recommend CNA''s development guidelines be introduced to the UBC design guidelines. GK stated that such guidelines should be codified and be enforceable to protect the neighborhood from unwanted development. The committee was in general agreement on all aspects talked about in this area. GK and MD both emailed Lynn Estabrook about their desires to be active in the design development guidelines. 
        MD stated that at the meeting with Austin Energy last week, concerns over the cost of the screen meshing for the electrical substation facade were presented. Both MD and Mark Lind (the other CNA rep at the meeting) stated that a lower cost substitute should be sought, but that the overall design presented should not be radically changed. MD mentioned that politically Austin Energy should stick to the design presented at the last neighborhood meeting so it does not appear that a ""bait and switch"" tactic was used. GK mentioned that the budget allowed for the facade may not be adequate due that this was a different type development for Austin Energy. Austin Energy appeared genuinely receptive to our comments, and will get back to the committee in the next few weeks. 
        MD received an anonymous letter stating ""People along he banton, rountree, basford streets have tried calling the city because a man named Robert has 2 illegal duplexes. This is not right, but we feel like the city has not helped us. Can you look into it please. His addresses are 3402 and 3403 banton road. We don't want to mention our names to keep the peace."" MD stated that the tax roles do not show anyone named Robert as the owner, andboth properties have recently sold. MD and GK were going to look at one of the for sale properties, however, it appears both have now been sold and are off the market. MD stated he is disappointed in this type of tactic, the P&Z committee is not the ""zoning police"" and will not do someone else''s ""dirty work"" for them. Anonymous letters are only appropriate in cases where your physical safety may be in question--in this case they are inappropriate. MD will present this info at the next steering committee meeting--this might be a good topic for an upcoming Flea article.

    AUSTIN ENERGY's Fiesta electric substation.   <Judy.Fowler@austinenergy.com> 
    The following is in response to Gordon's e-mail of June 18. As I wrote to Gordon yesterday, I have just finished up a project that took me out of commission for a couple of days. We will see everyone on Friday at Asbury.
    Judy

    1. [gb]
      There appears to at present be no coordinated design team. Normally a project like this would have a fully coordinated team of people who contribute a complete design. In addition to the Architect, this would include civil engineering, perhaps MEP (mechanical, electrical, plumbing) engineering, structural engineering, site lighting, and Landscape Architecture, all disciplines that are in various ways involved in the appearance of the building. What he observed was something very different. 
    Lars is simply providing architectural services for the "shell" of the building and the screen around the equipment.
    [jf]
    LARS IS THE ARCHITECT. ABB HAS THE ELECTRICAL, CIVIL AND STRUCTURAL SUPPORT FOR ANY INFORMATION AND ASSISTANCE LARS MAY NEED. 

    AS WE DISCUSSED AT THE LAST MEETING, THE LAYOUT OF THE SUBSTATION PROPER CANNOT CHANGE BECAUSE OF THE EQUIPMENT AND SITE LIMITATIONS. OUR UNDERSTANDING WAS THAT LARS WOULD WORK ON COMING UP WITH ELEVATIONS OF THE BUILDING AND WALL ALONG THE LINES PRESENTED TO AUSTIN ENERGY AT THE LAST MEETING. 

    LARS WILL BE WORKING WITH THE ABB STRUCTURAL ENGINEER TO MAKE SURE THAT EVERYTHING IS COORDINATED. LARS UNDERSTANDS AND THINKS IT IS APPROPRIATE THAT THIS IS AN ENGINEERING PROJECT AND HE IS COORDINATING HIS WORK ON THAT BASIS. WE HAD A PERIOD OF TIME THAT LARS CONTRACT WAS BEING DISCUSSED AND AUSTIN ENERGY HAD TO USE PUBLIC WORKS TO SECURE AND NEGOTIATE THAT CONTRACT. LARS CONTRACT WAS NOT FULLY SIGNED UNTIL THE END OF APRIL.

    2. [gb]
    Does Lars know who the Civil Engineer is, much less have a working relationship? Girard didn't mention the problem specifically, but he mentioned nothing of coordination here either. Back in March the "prime" consultant was ABB T&D who has "canned" designs for projects like this. Consort (Ben Turner) was going to be a SubConsultant to the Prime to provide local "site adaptation." When an Architect came into the picture, the first proposed was GSC (Trenton Wan), but that changed. Is Consort still involved, just not GSC? Who is the Civil now? Do they and Lars work together?
    [jf]
    ABB IS THE CONSULTANT. AS FAR AS "CANNED" THE LAYOUT OF A GIS IS VERY TECHNICAL AND I UNDERSTOOD THAT THE NEIGHBORHOOD APPRECIATED THE FACT THAT THE SUBSTATION HAD BEEN SITED AS FAR INTO THE FIESTA SITE AS POSSIBLE BECAUSE IT PULLED IT AWAY FROM THE STREET. 

    LARS KNOWS THAT ABB IS AVAILABLE AND I KNOW HE IS WORKING WITH THEIR ENGINEERS. HE IS COORDINATING WITH THE LANDSCAPE PERSON TO ASSURE THAT THE LANDSCAPING COMPLIMENTS THE DESIGN. AS GIRARD KNOWS BEN TURNER IS NO LONGER A PART OF THE TEAM AND TRENTON WON WAS NOT SELECTED AS THE ARCHITECT. AS YOU WILL REMEMBER LARS ATTENDED THE LAST MEETING ALTHOUGH HE HAD NOT BEEN FORMALLY HIRED. 

    3. ]gb]
    Lars expressly did not know who the Landscape Architect would be! The Future bus stop, a pavilion there, hardscape (ground surface materials other than plants), softscape (plantings), site lighting and grading are all things that need to be done, and are integral parts of a complete design, but which appear not to be coordinated by the Architect.
    [jf]
    THE LANDSCAPE PLAN WAS PREPARED BY CARL SCHATTENBURG WHO WORKS FOR AUSTIN ENERGY. EVERYONE WHO HAS SEEN THE PLAN SAYS IT IS REALLY IMPRESSIVE. AFTER THE BUILDING ELEVATIONS AND DESIGN ARE APPROVED THE LANDSCAPE PLAN WILL BE REVIEWED AND REVISED IF NECESSARY TO MAKE SURE THE LANDSCAPING IS COMPATIBLE. 

    WE STILL EXPECT THE NEIGHBORHOOD TO HAVE INPUT. CAPITAL METRO FINALLY RESPONDED TUESDAY MORNING AND THEY DO NOT WANT A BUS STOP THAT CLOSE TO I-35 BUT WOULD ENTERTAIN IMPROVEMENT IN THE ONE FURTHER WEST. AUSTIN ENERGY WILL WORK TOWARD THAT GOAL UNLESS THE NEIGHBORHOOD DOES NOT WANT ANY IMPROVEMENT IN THE BUS STOP. 

    HOPEFULLY THIS WILL ASSURE YOU AND GIRARD THAT EVERYTHING IS BEING COORDINATED. THE REASON WE HAVE NOT REQUESTED ANY FURTHER MEETINGS IS THAT LARS DID NOT HAVE ANY DESIGNS READY TO BE SHOWN.

    AUSTIN ENERGY PERSONNEL, LARS STANLEY, ABB, AND THEIR CONTRACTORS ARE ALL WORKING TOWARD HAVING A STELLAR PROJECT. ALL OF US WANT THIS TO BE AN AWARD WINNING PROJECT.

    (Mike Damal) On another note I called into Zoning Enforcement an illegal duplex that was offered for rent at 3203 1/2 Cherrywood.  Julie Wilkinson is the owner at 626-8693.  I met with Julie today asking to look at the duplex (a bargain--one bedroom for only $900/month!), and then stated my intensions/concerns as a neighbor.  I gave her a copy of zoning 101, development guidelines, and the letter CNA sent to David Desliva concerning the illegal activity at 3809  Cherrywood.  Hopefully she will be getting permits soon for a "duplex conversion"--allowed on her lot, however most of the "work" has already been "completed".
    I recieved a call today from Margot Brown at 3101 Robinson--she is requesting a variance for a garage apartment at her residence.  I am sending her the development guidelines, approval form, and vision statement tomorrow.  I have amended our letter to ask for both renter and owner approval within 200 feet and also that we have all materials three weeks prior to any city hearing.  (these two points were agreed to at our last meeting).  I will let you know if/ when I get any info back--she said they have a tentative hearing date mid April.
    A 1-hour meeting was held Feb 9 (Fri) with Austin Energy attended by: 
       - Judy Fowler (AE Public Involvement & Real Estate Services Manager) 
       - Allen Small (AE Project Manager for this substation) 
       - Mike Damal (CNA Planning & Zoning Committee Chair) 
       - Gordon Bennett (CNA Web-slave) 

    v------------------------- Highlight Reel ----------------------v
    TIMETABLE
       - CNA meets with the station's architects Mar 2 (Fri), time TBA
       - The new station should be up and running in 6 months (by Aug 1, 2001)

    WHO?
       - AE contracts with ABB Power T&D Co. Inc. <http://www.abb.com/> for a turnkey station on Fiesta's corner
       - ABB hires a local engineer to secure the necessary permits, a local architect to design the compound, and a local contractor to build it. AE oversees scheduling, cost, & impact

    DESIGN
       - The footprint is 120' x 67' aligned north-south on the greenspace behind Pinky's Pagers. The setback from 38-1/2 St. is 100'
       - The GIS unit itself is inside a building. A pair of transformers with switchgear are adjacent inside a 20' wall. The station is unmanned.
       - The 3 corner businesses (Party Stop, Pinky's Pagers, Short Stop) are unaffected for now
       - If TXDoT takes the 3 businesses later for its IH35 upgrade, corner redesign has 2 constraints:
            () A buried Duct Bank and Cable Trench may have no foundation above them
            () Restoring pervious cover subtracted by the station would be first in line 

    TO BE NEGOTIATED LATER
       - Landscaping
       - Mitigation
    ^---------------------- Highlight Reel -------------------------^

    TIMETABLE 
       AE needs this station desperately. Once the design and permits are in place, the facility will be dropped in quickly.  Any meaningful CNA input must be given by March 2... 

    WHO? 
       Our main contact at this point is Project Director Allen Small (505-7111, <allen.small@austinenergy.com>) 
       The local engineer seeking City permits is Ben Turner of Consort Inc. (315 Bowie St. 78703, 469-0500). He works with AE regularly, and has the same address as the architects (below). 
       The architects are Graeber, Simmons, and Cowan Inc. (GSC, 400 Bowie St., 78703, 477-9417) - we don't know yet who they will assign ~ hopefully we can attract Director of Design Trenton Wann to the March 2 charrette. 

    DESIGN 
       We haven't yet made direct contact with the architect. Mike delivered to Judy copies of all the design-oriented email that he received. Whether GSC is thinking of going beyond simply making the station "compatible with Fiesta" remains to be seen. We're promised a charrette on Friday, March 2, probably in the morning.   We strongly hope the design accomplishes more. 
       Putting the whole facility inside a building instead of just the GIS itself would require a considerably taller building, perhaps in excess of 40' according to Small - so probably the partially open walled compound approach would be less intrusive. 
    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
    (Comment by Girard Kinney) 
       This is where I might suggest something surprising to some. Looking down the road, "intrusiveness" may not be the problem; it might be the opportunity. If the building contained a taller element, that element might be a nice opportunity for a landmark at the Gateway to our neighborhood. Its four facades might contain clock faces, Cherrywood logo, Fiesta identification, all contained in a village tower that itself contained the tall equipment. Its roof could support any cell towers, satellite dishes, antennae and other normally ground sited equipment that may be needed for the project and the area, thus collecting the visual garbage and masking it behind the parapets of a village tower... the Cherrywood Village Tower could stand in a pedestrian-friendly corner greenspace that served as a ped/bike/transit node, and appropriate gateway to both the shopping center and our neighborhood. 
    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
       Judy finally made contact with TXDoT's Glen McVey and now has info more consistent with our own.  However McVey curiously told her they would be upgrading IH35 "in stages" and that nothing much would happen to that corner "in her lifetime." 
       When TXDoT finally does condemn ROW there, they would demolish the three corner businesses and their parking lots.  Might other retail then go in?  Probably not, says Judy, because Fiesta had negotiated leaving some pervious cover in the corner of its parking lot, thereby lowering its commercial value.  AE is condemning the pervious plot (based on this lower value).  I got lost in the details here, but Judy thought it would be incumbent on subsequent corner condemners (TXDoT) to try and restore the pervious area, and problematic to allow the earlier reserved pervious area to be re-opened for (uncompensated) non-pervious use. 
       In the long run, TXDoT may have more to do with the corner than will AE... 
       Only a parking lot that could be easily excavated, not a building, could go on top of the buried Duct Bank and Cable Trench that will run from 38-1/2 St. into the site. 
       Mike asked about burying some of the wires.  Judy explained that phone companies, cable companies, and newer fiber-optic cable companies enjoy legal access to power poles, and would have to be compensated for removing them.  But there is a fund for doing this in special cases (one of which is East 11th St. from IH35 to the Carver Library) to which we might apply.  She promised Mike further details. If we decide to pursue this, we should write it into our UBC Plan. 

    LATER 
       - Landscaping will be discussed after the other problems are resolved 
       - No further talk of  "mitigation" budget or accounting occurred at this meeting....

       (Aug 3) DIAZCARL@aol.com writes:
         I have contacted the city of Austin Building and Permitt Enforcement Dept in Austin (Ms. Paula Hawkins, Area Inspector, (512) 499-2404).  She has verified that Mr. DeSilva has pulled permits but has never had inspectors approve any of the improvements.  The permits which were issued were not for the development and/or modification associated with converting a single family home into a duplex. Also, Mr. DeSilva has not followed through with the required inspections for which the permits were originally pulled for.  Ms. Hawkins mentioned that he cannot have the duplex occupied until appropriate inspections are complete and once a certificate of occupancy is obtained.
       Ms. Hawkins has been very helpful and would appreciate your concerns to be
    voiced to her.  Carlos Diaz
       (Aug3) jack@jackjoseynewman.com writes
         I just talked to Mr. Desilva on the phone, and strongly suggested that he contact the CNA president (that's you, Jim), and arrange a face-to-face meeting with members of the SC. I gave him Jim's number, and let him know that a prompt meeting would be greatly preferrable to weeks and months of hostility towards his project. He was asked to explain his answer, if any, to the parking implications, among other issues.  Jack Newman
      (00Aug2) Mdamal@aol.com writes 
         In this weekend's Statesman an ad for a 4 bedroom 3 bath duplex at 3809B Cherrywood was run, for rent for $1500/mo. This is the house on the NE corner of 38 1/2 and Cherrywood, the one with all the blocks out front for many months... 
       The owner, David DeSilva has illegally converted the downstairs area even after neighbors have complained and the city inspectors have warned him...
       Please EVERYONE please call the ad at 789-6584 and voice your concern over this illegal activity. This is someone who is adding a total of 8 bedrooms for rent, which legally requires 8 parking spaces offstreet. This house does not have this type of parking and the overflow 
    parking will most likely go on Cherrywood, since there is no parking allowed on that part of 38-1/2...
       I plan on calling the city zoning department and ask you to do the same. Please let me know your concerns and let me know if/when you call and the response you get...
       David is also the owner of Mango's on Guadalupe--any thoughts of a boycott/protest there??? Let me know what you think...  Thanks, Mike Damal
        Gordon Bennett, Girard Kinney, Jim Walker, Steven Kreger, Mark Lind, and Mike  Damal attended.

       The neighborhood planning process was discussed in some detail.  MD reported  and supplied information on the process and what other neighborhood are doing  with their neighborhood plan (Hyde Park, Old West Austin, Chestnut).  Last  Friday, MD went to the city and talked with Steve Barney on the process.  He  was told that Gina Kopic will be assigned to Cherrywood as our planner, and  we will probably start in the "late summer/early fall"  timeframe.  It was  noted that although this timeframe was stated any number of factors could  delay it.  I asked Gina and Steve what we could do to prepare for this, and  the two things they said were to build awareness and start  surveying/inventorying  the neighborhood.

       The Cherrywood neighborhood plan will incorporate an area larger than the  current boundaries of CNA.  It will also include the Wilshire Woods and  Dellwood II neighborhoods to the north and the Blacklands neighborhood to the  south.  It was noted that CNA must work with and not alienate these areas.

       These action items were decided concerning the neighborhood plan

           1.  It was determined the best initial course of action was to start a  preliminary inventory of the    neighborhood and increase awareness of the  neighborhood planning process.

           2.  JW has volunteered to do the prep work for a map of the neighborhood,  compatible with city    guidelines, that can be used for the survey/inventory  work.

           3.  GK and SK have volunteered to provide the organization/process of for  the survey/inventory    of the neighborhood.  Presently the cityâ€Ts maps are  outdated and do not show the proper     location    of business, garage  apartments, sidewalks, curb cuts, etc...  Volunteers will be needed to help  in  this effort.  GK and SK will write an article for the next Flea asking  for volunteers and  explaining the neighborhood planning process.

           4.  GK is in contact with Blacklands, Wilshire Woods, and Delwood II  concerning I-35 issues--    he will communicate our initial intentions on  neighborhood planning, invite them to all of    our meetings, and encourage  them to take similiar actions.

       The land at the former Value Sky Park was discussed.  This is a 5.7 acre plot  current zoned mostly LI (light industrial).  The land  directly south of this  site is presently being rezoned CS-MU-CO (general commercial services, mixed  use, conditional overlay)  through the Rosewood and Chestnut neighborhood  plans.  It is thought that the best chance for rezoning will occur when we  get our neighborhood plan.  It was determined a proactive approach is the  best way instead of being reactive to what might be built there.  It is  stated in planning commission minutes that any change in use  for the site  must go to the planning commission.  MD will draft a letter to the current  owner stating our concerns for development with the site, providing them a  copy of our vision statement and development guidelines. [TCAD has the owner of 2900 Manor listed as 2900 MANOR LTD, 7303 SAN PEDRO, SAN ANTONIO TX 78216-6225, right south of Central Park Mall near the airport.  As of 00Apr, land is appraised at $244,000, improvements at $380,000.  /gb]

       No new info was provided on Austin Energy transformer site.  We will attempt  to contact Judy Fowler to find out the progress of site  acquisition/design/development.

    CHILDRENS' ADVOCACY CENTER
       CAC's Sandra Martin gives these specifics: The Children's Advocacy Center 1110 East 32nd Street Austin, Texas 78722 (512) 472-1164 FAX (512)472-1167 This block across the street from the Avalon Apartments and the Children's Advocacy Center has two "residential" lots. 1105 was bought in 1996 by Richard Linklater of Detour Productions. 1107 was bought in 1997 by CAC (before then it had been the trashiest property in the neighborhood, hands down). CAC tried but failed to have it rezoned for office use. Now it sits cleaned up but abandoned. Should CNA should refrain from taking a position until we have talked through some issues ? (1) Commercial "creep" -- however positive Detour's and CAC's proposed uses might be, would a side effect be edging the commercial perimeter closer to a residential block? (2) If so, would that be bad necessarily? (3) If not, what use and design standards should we demand of non-residential "infill?"

    Contacts Links
     
    Once the only big picture around was the TPSD's "Growth Watch." 
    http://www.ci.austin.tx.us/growth/
     
    Then came the "Sustainable Communities Initiative." 
    http://www.ci.austin.tx.us/sustainable/contents.htm
     
    ... Which spawned the "Sustainable Indicators Project." 
    http://www.centex-indicators.org/index.html
     
    Next was the Central Texas Visioning Project 
    http://www.envisioncentraltexas.org/index.php   (ECT)
    http://www.envisionutah.org/    (Envision Utah) 
     
    Now is added "Livable City." 
    http://www.liveablecity.org/
    1. New Urban News New Urban News began publishing in May of 1996 in response to a growing interest to the planning and development trend called the New Urbanism. Also known as "smart growth," and traditional neighborhood development, the trend focuses on building mixed-use, walkable neighborhoods instead of conventional suburban subdivisions, shopping centers and office parks
    2. New Urban News
      POB 6515, Ithaca NY 14851

      Visit the following sites with connections to the New Urbanism :

      ORGANIZATIONS

      • Congress for the New Urbanism
      • National Town Builders Association
      • World Idea Networks
      • New towns and neighborhoods center
      • Smart Growth Network
      • Seaside Institute
      • National Trust for Historic Preservation's Main Street Center
      • The Local Government Commission's Center for Livable Communities
      • Florida Sustainable Communities Center
      • Transportation Action Network
      • Treasure Coast Regional Planning Council
      ARCHITECTURE AND PLANNING FIRMS
      • Calthorpe Associates
      • Correa Valle Valle
      • Dover Kohl & Partners
      • Duany Plater-Zyberk & Company
      • Looney Ricks Kiss
      • Moule & Polyzoides
      • Torti Gallas & Partners - CHK
      NEW URBAN TOWNS AND NEIGHBORHOODS
      • Frijoles Village in Santa Fe, New Mexico
      • Habersham in Beaufort County, South Carolina
      • I'On in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina
      • Northwest Landing in Dupont, Washington
      • Prospect in Longmont, Colorado
      • Southern Village in Chapel Hill, North Carolina
      SELECTED RESOURCES
      • James Howard Kunstler Author of "A Geography of Nowhere"
      • Joseph Terry's New Urbanism resource page Includes links to many articles
      • New Urbanism resource index
      • The narrow streets database Communities that have adopted reduced width street standards
      • New Town Law Legal services for attorneys and developers of new urbanist projects
      • Bibliography of the New Urbanism
      • TND Homes A new web site from the publishers of the TND Series home plans
      • Carfree cities Solutions to the problem of the urban automobile
    More...
    More... [text]

     
      Vision Statement (approved by the general membership 99Jul28)
    The Cherrywood Neighborhood Association is committed to:
      * Safe, walkable streets ;
      * Neighborhood-oriented and neighborhood-friendly businesses and services ;
      * Preserve and promote public and private greenspaces ;
      * Respect, recognize and maintain ethnic, family, socioeconomic and cultural diversity ;
      * Managing growth while ensuring livable density , a diversity of architectural styles, and a well maintained neighborhood;
      * Achieving a sense of community and security by encouraging responsibility, involvement and pride among all residents and owners;
      * Healthy and active relationships with other neighborhood groups, civic organizations and government agencies;
      * A built environment compatible with the above goals.

    Gordon Bennett's Vision Retreat 2 notes 99Jun26
       VR2 was even better than VR1.  Results should be evident by the July 28 Membership meeting. In particular:

    Facilitator Pat Grigadean  < Pat Grigadean > drilled us in "interest-based" conflict resolution.  Basically this means, first, patiently isolate important interests that need to be satisfied, then find available solutions that do that best. 
    Five steps:

       1. CLARIFY ISSUES.  Not just "traffic" but obstacles to improving traffic:
      -Drivers may save time cutting through Cherrywood,
      -Low priority for Police,
      -Cherrywood not eligible for traditional solutions,
      -Lack of a clear CNA position on traffic issues,
      - ... [others]

       2. IDENTIFY INTERESTS (as opposed to general arguments for or against).
      -(1)To have my street more quiet and peaceful,
      -(2)To have only neighborhood people driving by my house,
      -(3)To make my walks safer,
      -(4)To do something right away,
      -(5)To maintain timely response by emergency vehicles,
      -(6) To ...

       3. GENERATE OPTIONS (short-term and/or long-term).
      -(a)Promote CNA traffic control priorities aggressively,
      -(b)City erect speed humps and other physical barriers,
      -(c)APD enforce better,
      -(d)Erect signs identifying Cherrywood Neighborhood,
      -(e)Erect life-size cut-outs of police officers holding radar guns,
      -(f)"Spill" bag of cement on a rainy day (drying as a renegade bump),
      -(g) ...  (List ANY option that comes to mind, WITHOUT evaluating.)

       4. EVALUATE OPTIONS in light of interests.  The problem resolves to which options (a-f) best satisfy the most interests (1-5).
      -"a" may do well with 1, 2, 3, 5
      --"b" well with 1, 2, 3
      -"c" well with 4, 5 (Cherrywood traffic a low priority for APD)
      -"d" mildly with 1, 2, 3, well with 4, 5
      -"e" mildly with 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
      -"f" well with 4
    Thus we might decide to emphasize "a" first, proceed with "d," think some more about "b" and "e," periodically try "c" because it doesn't cost anything, and forget "f" (unless nothing else works!).

       5. DEVELOP A PLAN (specifying time horizons for each step).
      -Revive the CNA Traffic Committee immediately,
      -Charge it with working up priorities,
      -Have it present something to the Membership July 28,
      -Within the next six months campaign for the approved product among adjacent neighborhoods, Austin Neighborhoods Council, City staff, Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (formerly Austin Transportation Study), and City Council members.
      -Set a time for review of progress.

       It's looks deceptively simple, even obvious, but most discussions of controversial problems do not proceed this way, and typically do not work nearly as well ....

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