Council to vote soon on The Grove at Shoal Creek

The Austin City Council will soon take action on a mixed-use project called The Grove at Shoal Creek, which would include a large public park. The problem is not everyone is on board with the idea.

The possibilities are endless. That's the vision behind the project. Developer of The Grove at Shoal Creek and co-owner of ARG Bull Creek Garrett Martin says, "This space right here will be the pond area. Then up that way you'll have an active portion of the park."

From a boardwalk and play field to restaurants, office space and housing. It's a 75-acre mixed-use project, or planned unit development, all centering around more than 19 acres of parkland.

"It will have these incredible magnificent trees all around it. We've committed to a superior standard in terms of protecting those trees. We're going to protect three quarters of the critical root-zone as opposed to just half of the critical root-zone," says Martin.

The future site is at 4307 Bull Creek Road. Recently, the parks proposal from The Grove officially earned the recognition of "superior" from the Austin Parks and Recreation Department.  That means the city would be getting more parkland than under traditional zoning.

"They are willing to step up and pay the cost to improve the parkland and also pay the cost to maintain the parkland. That is really important because as we all know, with our city budget, we just do not have enough money to be able to do that within the parks budget," says Sheri Gallo, Austin City Council Member, District 10.

Austin City Council will soon decide whether or not to approve the PUD zoning for The Grove. Part of the delay, has been with the controversy surrounding the project.

The project is at the intersection of several different neighborhoods in Central Austin.

Residents like Sarah Antenora are in support of urban development but want their concerns addressed first; such as what the housing will look like, construction, parkland and traffic. Her house is at 45th and Jackson, which faces the project.

"Noise coming across the street, trash pollution, traffic pollution," says Antenora. "There's one road in and one road out. They're going to create a road through a neighborhood. That's not very fair to the other neighbors living next door. I'm not sure how they're going to solve the intersection problem when they're adding 20 more trips up and down that same intersection."

Both the developer and Council Member Gallo say they will continue working with residents to make sure this is a win-win for everyone.

This will go before council on October 20th.

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