The Austin City Council is beginning to get into the nitty gritty of the controversial "Grove at Shoal Creek" project but they're still a long way from a consensus.
There's a battle going on between the Bull Creek neighborhood, the developer and even members of the City Council don't ageee on what this Planned Unit Development or PUD will be like. The traffic this will bring seems to be a huge concern.
The Grove discussions started this morning with an item brought forth by Council Member Sherri Gallo. The Grove is in her district. Gallo was hoping to get support for a resolution that allowed the City Manager to at least "explore" the idea of creating of a traffic mitigation fund for the area...improvements that are additional to what the developer has committed to. Council Member Leslie Pool called the idea redundant because she says the city has measures in place that already do this. Council member Pio Renteria who co-sponsored the resolution decided to vote against it after he heard all of the discussion. The item failed. At 2:00 the actual Grove discussion came up. The developer ARG spoke up concerned about some of the amendments reducing the commercial space. And Grayson Cox with the Bull Creek Road Coalition talked bout how the project as it stands would be great...somewhere else.
"We're talking about a development that is literally smack dab in the middle of 6 single family neighborhoods that have low volume residential streets. That have kids on trikes riding in the street because we don't have sidewalks. These are 1940's, 1950's neighborhoods," Cox said.
The Grove item passed on the first reading today with most of Council only saying "yes" to keep the discussion going. They were very aware that today's approval is just a placeholder, anything can change. Council and the developer will continue discussing and negotiating. Council is expected to tackle The Grove again on November 10th.