Archives for 2011

7 Rio Reanimated

7 Rio Reanimated

Remember the plans for the 7 Rio condo high rise?   It’s back in play, with a new scaled down plan focused on renters rather than buyers.

The original proposal by CLB Partners was an attractive 32-story point tower.  According to an updated site plan application filed in late October, developer/applicant CWS is seeking entitlements for a “24-story building with approximately 221 multi-family units [for rent] and associated ground floor uses, along with parking and utility improvements.” 198,612ft total and the plan does call for retail, or some commercial use on the ground level.

The building will be situated along W. 7th Street, including the southeast corner of 7th Street and Rio Grande.  In previous plans for 7 Rio, I recall the inclusion of Ranch 616, but the latest footprint looks to leave it untouched.

7 Rio austin apartment site7 Rio has spent at least four years on the City’s Downtown Austin emerging project poster, and it is still there as of the most recent publishing with the attached description: “Plans are on hold for a 32-story condominium tower at W. 7th Street and Rio Grande by Dallas-based development company CLB Partners. The 158-unit project will also have about 7,400 square feet of new retail space on the ground floor. The project, being designed by local architectural firm Rhode:Partners, is expected to cost more than $50 million.”  I expect that info will be updated soon.

Interestingly, in the comments to the site plan application, it reads: “Parkland fees will be required for payment at $650/unit.”  This yields $143,650 to City of Austin Parks & Recreation‘s coffers.  I’d like to see that money stay in downtown Austin, and used for downtown public open space.   [Read more…]

Survey Says: Sabine Street Promenade Is A Go!

Survey Says: Sabine Street Promenade Is A Go!

Another win for Austin and a much needed boost for the neighborhood surrounding E. 6th Street.

Back in September, DAB stopped just shy of begging readers to weigh in on CAMPO’s survey of the public about which projects should be awarded grants; specifically, advocating support for granting funds to Austin bike share and streetscape improvements to Sabine and E 6th Street.  Yesterday, we were excited to learn that CAMPO approved funding for Austin bike share system.

CAMPO has also awarded $2.7 million for the construction of a Sabine Street promenade, that will involve the development of sidewalks, bike lanes and pedestrian amenities between downtown Austin’s 4th and 7th Streets.

sabine street promenade

This idea was originally framed as part of the implementation of the Waller Creek District Master Plan.  It progressed last year as the mobility bond package was approved by voters, and the Sabine Street promenade was bundled with improvements planned for “dirty 6ixth”, ostensibly to provide connectivity between Waller Creek and Congress Ave by way of Austin’s most historic street. [Read more…]

Austin Bike Share Gets A $1.5 Million Boost

Austin Bike Share Gets A $1.5 Million Boost

In an announcement by the Austin Transportation Department, we learn that CAMPO has approved $22 million for Austin transportation projects, including $1.5 million for Austin bike share!

The $1.5MM grant required matching funds of at least 20%. Mellow Johnny’s, GSD&M, and a growing roster of local businesses are stepping up to raise an additional $500,000.

Ever since seeing a successful bike share in action (Minneapolis and Montreal), I’ve been an apostle for bringing a robust, managed, convenient, and predictable system to Austin.

For years a managed cycle program was not even part of the transit discussion.  The reason for the surge in broad based popularity comes down to money.  For a fraction of the cost of buses, a managed bike share system can solve many of the same last-mile challenges.

Now, because of leadership at City Hall and the financial commitment by local businesses, Austin bike share is integral to discussions of last-mile and urban transportation options in Austin, Texas. [Read more…]

DANA Urban Core Happy Hour

DANA Urban Core Happy Hour

Quick post about the Downtown Austin Neighborhood Association’s monthly Urban Core Happy Hour, (12/8/2011) from 6:30pm – 8:30pm.

This month’s HH will be at downtown Austin Whole Foods, on the Plaza Level, right next to the newly opened ice skating rink!  Whole Foods will be providing nibbles and booze for DANA members (only $5 if you are not a DANA member!), and both Whole Foods and Dr. Georgeanne Freeman will be doing raffles for awesome prizes!  Also, we’ll have live music at the event, starting at 7! Make sure to drop by and enjoy the fun!

Click Here for full details for the event.  Please make sure to read the door policy at the bottom of the event page.

If you aren’t a member of DANA, individual memberships only cost $25 per year, and you get a host of benefits, including free entry into ~10 Urban Core Happy Hours a year!  Join now!