Mayor Adler’s State of the City Address Part 10: Land Development

As concerns the land development code, the status quo is our worst enemy. Anyone who loves this city knows we cannot afford the cost of not getting the code revision done right. Everyone in this room knows that CodeNEXT is not what is causing today’s demolitions of existing homes, gentrification, and increasing traffic and unaffordability. It provides the opportunity to find part of the answer.

I am encouraged that the most recent staff recommendation for the mapping is closer to the Austin Bargain of preserving and respecting neighborhood identity and quality of life, focusing our housing supply growth on our major corridors, and establishing the transitions to make it all work. I still want to see more such alignment and more in the way of achieving affordability in housing.

I encourage our volunteer boards and commissions to work diligently to get code revision in good enough shape so when it reaches us, we can give Austin a new land development code that works.

Folks, we’re going to take as much time as we need to get this right. But we have to get it right. Managing growth to preserve the spirit and soul of our city will be difficult, if not impossible, if we don’t get CodeNEXT done right. We can get it done this year. Let’s show the world how to work productively through our differences for the greater good and a better future.

CMs Kitchen and Alter and I have posted over 50 specific goals for Code Next that we think might well identify many of the common goals shared by most of those involved in CodeNext discussions. At our last work session, CM Pool said she was signing on, too. If enough of these goals reflect common ground, then we are well on our way toward achieving a CodeNext consensus. We can do this, together.