Dripping Springs neighbors ask council to deny wedding venue permit

- Neighbors in Dripping Springs are fired up hoping to keep one of Austin’s barbecue families from opening up a wedding venue. 

Tuesday night City Council considered granting a development permit for the Mark Black Wedding Venue. 

Neighbors with the Friendship Alliance filled City Hall to voice their case to council members. 

They said there are three main reasons they oppose the venue including water quality, fire safety and emergency evacuation. The development, they argue, will impact the water runoff in the area and fireworks or discarded cigarettes could pose a fire risk. The Friendship Alliance said there’s only one road leading into and out of the community so any additional traffic or emergencies because of the venue could make an evacuation difficult. 

“In the event of an emergency, putting 600 vehicles, two are buses, on that road, and people are already hitting the sauce, this is a recipe for disaster, Mayor. A recipe for disaster,” said Cristian Granucci who owns land near the proposed venue. 

Mark Black, the son of Austin barbecue pit master Terry Black, said he hopes to build two high end wedding venues on his Concord Circle property. 

Black said the entire property is 64 acres, but he only plans to develop 10 percent of that. 

Black also said there have been several studies conducted on the property and developers made sure the venue will have very little impact on the environment. 

“We’re going to end up doing it the right way, whether it’s delayed or whether we need to get some more numbers, in the end it’s gonna be done by the law,” Mark Black said. 

Tuesday night council chose to table the proposal. They will take it up again March 13.

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