Few developments in Austin are as controversial as the Grove at Shoal Creek, the 75-acre development planned for a largely empty tract in Central Austin.
With the City Council scheduled to begin consideration of the project Thursday, here are five things to know about the Grove:
1. The developer, ARG Bull Creek, wants the council to zone the land for a mixed-use development. Plans call for building about 1,700 residences and 360,000 square feet of retail and office space.
2. Neighborhoods opposing the project have cited traffic concerns. ARG’s study projects the development would add 19,000 car trips a day to nearby roads. The city’s engineers have questioned if the developer’s traffic plans are sufficient, but city managers recommended certain issues be addressed later in the planning process.
3. ARG has promised to set aside 10 percent of the rental housing and 5 percent of the ownership units for affordable housing.
4. The Grove looms over two council elections this fall. District 7 Council Member Leslie Pool, who has long objected to the project as designed, is being challenged by Grove supporter Natalie Gauldin. District 10 Council Member Sheri Gallo, who backs the proposed development at the eastern edge of her district, is being challenged by Grove opponent Alison Alter.
5. The site was previously owned by the Texas Department of Transportation. When the agency offered the tract for sale in 2014, neighbors urged City Hall to buy it and create a park, but the city couldn’t come up with the $28.5 million needed.
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