According to an article in the August 23rd Austin American-Statesman, state officials are moving forward with plans to dispose of the largely undeveloped 75 acre tract at 45th Street and Bull Creek Road. According to the article one developer has a proposal in the works and another is considering whether to submit one.
The first step in the process is offering the land at fair market value to local government agencies, such as the city of Austin and AISD. If nothing comes of that sealed bids would be solicited in September or October.
Nearby neighborhoods, including Rosedale, across Shoal Creek, are described in the article as
being “some of the city’s most vocal”. Seven neighborhood associations have formed the Bull Creek Road Coalition to work to influence the outcome of the property to the best result for the affected nearby neighborhoods. The coalition conducted a survey of over 700 residents to assess what they’d like to see happen to the site.
In the survey two-thirds of respondents were split between those wanting large-lot single family homes with no commercial development versus those who preferred an assortment of different sizes/types of residences with small retailers and restaurants. The remainder were split between those who wanted higher mixed use arrangement, similar to the Domain in North Austin, and those who prefer high density development along the lines of what is being done on West Sixth Street and North Lamar.
Concern over the project includes impact to both traffic and the environment. Bull Creek Road is currently just two lanes and 45th Street is considered to be a nightmare to many at rush hour. The environmental concerns stem from the possible loss of heritage trees on the site and the impact on Shoal Creek.
Because the site currently belongs to the state there is no city zoning for it. A change in ownership would require developers to go through the city’s zoning process before any work on the project could begin.
The article can be found on the Austin American-Statesman site (note that the site does have a pay wall). You can find and follow the local neighborhoods’ efforts on this on the Bull Creek Road Coalition Facebook page.