Affordable Housing

Posted by josiahstevenson Oct 05th 10:40 PM

Page 76 - 1

Does this mean that some Affordability Unlocked projects might qualify for site plan lite even if above eight units?

Posted by agh Oct 05th 10:19 PM

(2) This section does not apply to development that: (a) Includes a boat dock, bulkhead, or shoreline access; (b) Exceeds 50 percent impervious cover; (c) Is on a lot that was not originally part of a residential subdivision; or (d) Requires a variance from the Land Use Commission.

I believe 2b should be removed. Impervious cover limits in all zones should be in line with allowing for a limited site plan review, particularly in allowing for more missing middle housing. 2c is also unclear without a map as to what was originally platted as residential and when.

Posted by agh Oct 05th 10:21 PM

An additional number of units is allowed for a qualifying development certified under Section 23-3E-1080 (Application Procedures) and participating in the Affordability Unlocked Bonus Program, as provided under Section 23-3D-10090 (Affordability Unlocked Density Bonus).

The text is unclear as to whether you can exceed eight units and if so, by how many units.

Posted by kevin.mclaughlin70 Oct 06th 10:04 PM

Qualifies as an affordable housing project under Article 23-4E (Affordable Housing);


Posted by tannerblair Oct 05th 10:08 PM

Group Residential

As near as I can tell, this term seems to refer to roommates. Are you saying that in R1 - R2C, roommates wouldn’t be allowed? If so, I have a big problem with that.

Posted by tannerblair Oct 05th 10:04 PM


It seems counter-intuitive that R3 would allow for a new single family home.

Posted by tannerblair Oct 05th 10:03 PM


Glad to see more duplexes allowed throughout, but I would also like to see an allowance for triplexes and quadplexes for zones that allow larger single-family homes. Enfield is a great example of an existing neighborhood where large single family and some multi-family of the same scale co-exist.

Posted by tannerblair Oct 05th 10:01 PM

Accessory Dwelling Unit - Residential

Glad to see these allowed in all zones. These are a great way to add density, and spreading them out means that no one lot type ends up with all of them.

Posted by robert.sotolar Oct 05th 10:37 PM

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Preserving existing housing stock while encouraging the addition of dwelling units seems to be a win-win!

Posted by robert.sotolar Oct 05th 10:34 PM

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If we’re trying to encourage more housing units across the city, why are we being so prescriptive about how much adding more habitable space can cost here?

Posted by robert.sotolar Oct 05th 10:22 PM

Residential 1 (R1) Zone (A) Purpose. Residential 1 (R1) zone is intended to allow detached housing on small lots throughout the city.

This seems to be the last bastion of strictly single-family zoning in the code. Is there room to advocate for doing away with this zoning category and merging it into the proposed “Residential 2C” (R2C) Zone (see page 311) so that, by default, people can at least build single-family attached and duplex structures anywhere in Austin that is zoned residential (except Rural Residential and Lake Austin, I guess) ? They may choose to build single-family structures, but at least there’s the option for more density.

Posted by robert.sotolar Oct 05th 10:27 PM

Residential 2A (R2A) Zone (A) Purpose. Residential 2A (R2A) zone is intended to allow detached housing with accessory dwelling units (ADUs) or duplexes in a more suburban setting.

Yes! More affordable housing everywhere also means the ‘burbs. Making current areas of sprawl denser can prevent further sprawl and may make those areas more suited to self-sustaining public transportation infrastructure that could be tied into a regional network.

Posted by robert.sotolar Oct 05th 10:59 PM

23-3C-3110 Residential 2C (R2C) Zone (A) Purpose. Residential 2C (R2C) zone is intended to allow detached housing with accessory dwelling units (ADUs) or duplexes on small lots throughout the city.

I’m curious if Council Staff can articulate a rationale for why certain areas would be zoned the more restrictive “Residential 1” (R1) - see page 305 - vs. this “Residential 2C” (R2C) zoning. If the reasoning for leaving areas in the more restrictive R1 zoning is neighborhood sensitivity, perhaps we can push City Council to be bold and stay faithful to their stated intent with this code of a more affordable Austin?

Posted by tannerblair Oct 05th 10:37 PM

Duplex 4 +4

Wouldn’t the base standard for a duplex be 2?

Posted by agh Oct 05th 10:21 PM

Table 23-3C-4040(A) Parking Requirements for Residential Multi-Unit Zones

There should be no minimum parking requirements for residential uses. Parking spaces can cost between 20,000 and 50,000 each to build and not only does that drive up the cost of housing, but it eats into impervious cover. If a builder wants to provide them then that is fine, but they should not be required.

Posted by robert.sotolar Oct 05th 10:57 PM

(B) Maximum Number of Parking Spaces. (1) Developments over 10,000 square feet in floor area or containing 25 or more residential units may not exceed 1.75 times the minimum number of parking spaces required. Maximum is calculated prior to any applicable parking reductions. (2) Lots with frontage on a Corridor or wholly or partially located within a Center may not exceed 1.25 times the minimum number of parking spaces required. Maximum is calculated prior to any applicable parking reductions.

Could we float the idea to Staff or Council of rewarding developers or homeowners who forgo parking entitlements (under the code max or maybe even under code minimums, in both cases contingent on building integration into the public transport network or on-site bike storage and other pedestrian-friendly features) with a density bonus?

Posted by agh Oct 05th 10:20 PM

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Minimum area in all zones for multifamily should be reduced to 2500SF and minimum width should be reduced to 25’. With the number set higher you are encouraging less missing middle housing and promoting more large-scale apartments to be built.

Posted by agh Oct 05th 10:18 PM

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The base FAR for all multi-unit zones should be 1.0, if not closer to 1.5. This will encourage family-size units to be built (2 to 3 bedrooms).

Posted by agh Oct 05th 10:12 PM

Table 23-3C-4070(A) Lot Size and Intensity

The minimum lot size is too high to be able to build missing middle housing. Coupled with the low max intensity, the only thing that can be built on 5,000SF lots appears to be duplexes.

Posted by agh Oct 05th 10:40 PM

Table 23-3C-5040(A) Parking Requirements for Mixed-Use Zones

There should be no parking required for any residential. The cost and impact to impervious cover is too high.

Posted by agh Oct 05th 10:49 PM

Page 376 - 1

Minimum area for development is too high and maximum FAR is too low.

Posted by mike_nahas Oct 05th 10:20 PM

Manufactured Home

Manufactured Homes are not allowed in residential zones. This a huge limitation on inexpensive housing.

Posted by robert.sotolar Oct 05th 10:28 PM

23-3C-10130 University Neighborhood Overlay (A) Purpose. The purpose of the University Neighborhood Overlay (UNO) is to promote high density redevelopment in the area generally west of the University of Texas campus, encourage affordable housing, provide a mechanism for the creation of a densely populated but livable and pedestrian-friendly environment, and protect the character of the predominantly single-family residential neighborhoods adjacent to the zone.

This model seems to be working to increase density in the West Campus area. Is there a way we can promote this type of overlay as a model other areas in the city to City Council?

Posted by agh Oct 05th 10:07 PM

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Given the need for more housing and higher development through UNO, the lowest height maximum should allow for 5-over-1 apartments, so 65’.

Posted by ryanmnill Oct 05th 10:34 AM

23-3D-10040 Dwelling Unit Occupancy Limit (A) Except as otherwise provided by this section or by another requirement of this Title, not more than six unrelated adults may reside in a dwelling unit. (B) In approving an application for a conditional use permit, the Land Use Commission may approve an occupancy above the limit imposed in this section. (C) In no case may the number of occupants exceed limitations established in the Property Maintenance Code, Section 404 (Occupancy Limitations).

The current code has provision allowing seniors to be exempt from occupancy limits. That section is 25-2-511 (B), which is not here the new draft LDC.

Also we would like to see the occupancy limits raised in general. According to council direction to increase housing capacity.

Posted by robert.m.fostr Oct 05th 10:11 PM

Include six dwelling units if the existing zoning on the site is Residential 4 (R4) or more restrictive. (3) A Type 2 qualifying development may: (a) Construct to a height that is the applicable base zoning district height limit multiplied by 1.5; and (b) Include eight dwelling units if the site is located within a Residential 4 (R4) or more restrictive zone.

This is the only place with R3 and more restrictive zoning bonus. This should be worked into the default AHBP.

Posted by robert.m.fostr Oct 05th 10:55 PM

Former Title 25. A density bonus request in the Former 25 (F25) Zone, established in Section 23-3C-9090 (Former Title 25 (F25) Zone), shall be subject to the requirements and density bonus incentives, if any, as available under Former Title 25.

Given that F25 encompasses large swaths of Central Austin, an affordable housing bonus should be created for these neighborhoods or the standard should apply.

Posted by ki Oct 05th 10:02 PM

Affirmative Marketing. Each development will have an affirmative marketing and outreach plan for the length of the affordability period, approved by the director, that is consistent with U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development regulations. This plan will ensure that developments have in place affirmative fair housing marketing policies in soliciting buyers and tenants, in determining their eligibility, and in concluding sales and rental transactions. The plan will include ways to publicize or market the availability of housing opportunities to low- and moderate-income households and to protected classes, as well as information on fair housing laws and protections.

It seems like there should be some language that the marketing plan scales with the size of the development. A 10 unit development will have a different size marketing plan and budget than a 5,000 unit development.

Posted by robert.m.fostr Oct 05th 10:59 PM

Where multiple bonuses are applicable, the maximum calculated bonus area or bonus units apply.

Does this mean the highest of the bonuses or do the bonuses compound?

Posted by robert.m.fostr Oct 05th 10:04 PM

Application. The affordability requirements described in Table 23-4E-1040(B) are applied based on geography to ensure the requirements reflect sub-market variations and zone-specific bonus options.

Table 23-4E-1040(B) appears to lack the zones in which these requirements would apply

Posted by robert.m.fostr Oct 05th 10:06 PM

Table 23-4E-1040(C)

Where are the maps that these numbers apply to?

Posted by robert.m.fostr Oct 05th 10:17 PM

Must be deed-restricted to achieve at least the same affordability period and income restrictions as the project accessing the Affordable Housing Bonus and may include any combination of new units or units in an existing structure;

What prevents the affordable units for a downtown high rise being tiny dilapidated(but still up to code) units from the 70s? Would seem against the spirit of the law for a building with 900 sq ft one bedrooms to provide 400 sq ft one bedrooms as their affordable units without any of the amenities? How many extra units would be fair for us to ask for in this case?

Posted by robert.m.fostr Oct 05th 10:11 PM

Occupancy Conversion.

How will we prevent abuse of this? Technically, an ownership unit could be converted to a rental unit after 40 years and not have to be affordable. Then it could be sold the next year as a market rate ownership unit right?

Posted by robert.m.fostr Oct 05th 10:23 PM

The director shall establish processes, compliance, and monitoring criteria for implementing the affordability requirements of this division. Training of property owners or property managers before the initial lease up and during the affordability period may be required.

This is crucial, we don’t want a repeat of the Domain.

Posted by ki Oct 05th 10:53 PM

For developments that have received an affordability certification letter, the developer or property owner shall notify the director when building permits are issued for the development.

If the permits are issued by the city. Why does the city need to be notified? Instead of telling developers they need to notify a city official when the city staff notifies them that a permit has been issued, and then having an enforcement provision to make sure they do that. It would seem easier for city staff just to notify the director.

Posted by robert.m.fostr Oct 05th 10:26 PM

Manufactured Home Park. A minimum of 270 days before the date that an application for a rezone, site plan, or land use approval may be approved.

Thanks, this will help protect our most vulnerable neighbors!

Posted by robert.m.fostr Oct 05th 10:59 PM


The annual reports are a good idea that should be applied to all affordable units and should be available online for community groups to confirm compliance.