Mayor Adler’s open letter to AURA

Wednesday, March 15, 2017


Dear AURA:

I agree that we need a CodeNext process that does not begin with 97% of the final product already decided, and I would like to thank you for your open letter because it gives me an opportunity to clear up a misconception about what I’ve been saying. It is certainly possible that I have misspoken on this subject to a reporter, but regardless I want to make clear what I have intended to have been saying at the dozens of opportunities over the last few months when I’ve been able to talk about CodeNEXT.

In my State of the City in January, I spoke of the Austin Bargain where we all agree that we will achieve density along the transportation corridors and activity centers where folks want to buy housing but not significantly impact the interiors of neighborhoods. I suggested this compromise to avoid realizing the worst fears of many folks. Yes, we will actually meet our housing supply needs. Yes, we can do this without substantially and materially changing the interiors of our legacy and heritage neighborhoods.  I have suggested that, if we agree to these two propositions, then we will mainly need to focus on the tough work of mapping the transition areas between the higher intensity areas and the single family areas.  I have predicted that those transition areas will be relatively small (maybe 3% to 5%) of the city. This is certainly a great generalization, but it is intended to set a goal and to provide a high level proposed framework. Continue reading

Come Now, Let Us Reason Together

RECA Mayoral Townhall

Mar. 9, 2017


Mayor Adler deviated somewhat from his prepared text.


MarchLunchHomepageIt’s good that we can be together today.

The guidance I was given gently suggested that y’all might like to have perhaps more time for questions this year and a bit less time for me to hold forth on my insights. Boy, you know the honeymoon is over when they ask you to hurry it up with the speech so they can get to the Q&A. Don’t worry. I want to get to your questions as much as you do. Knowing what’s on your mind is as important to me as you knowing what’s on my mind.

It’s been a year since we were together at this event. In the intervening months, I have spent literally tens of thousands of hours in City Council meetings. The process of governing might be sometimes awkward, and the results are rarely – if ever – to everyone’s liking, we are dealing with the big issue facing Austin: affordability. Continue reading