Austin Council presented second draft of CodeNEXT

The rules and regulations dictating what people in Austin can do with their land are changing.

AUSTIN - In a special called meeting Wednesday, the Austin City Council was presented the second draft of CodeNEXT, the rewrite of the land development code. 

City staff has been in the process of rewriting the code for a few years and now has a working draft. The second version of the draft was released last week after city staff reviewed the more than 4,000 public comments and made changes. 

In Wednesday's presentation, staff focused on how CodeNEXT impacts drainage and flooding across the city. 

Austin hasn't rewritten its land development code since the 1980s. The code is a set of rules and regulations dictating what and people can build around the city. While the rewrite is a big undertaking, city staff say it's a project that will impact everyone in Austin.

"It's important if you want to build something, obviously. It's important if you're wanting to remodel your home or your business. But it's also important in a larger way," said Jerry Rusthoven, Assistant. Director of Austin's Planning and Zoning Department. "The code and what's allowed in the code, what land uses are allowed etcetera, effects your quality of life, it affects your drive to work, it affects the look and character of your community."

The city will host six open houses next month to get feedback on the second draft. Residents can also opt to give feedback online. Those comments will be taken into consideration and the next draft will be released in November. 

City staff plan to take CodeNEXT to council for a vote next spring.

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