AUSTIN - The first of three votes to approve the Planned Unit Development (PUD) classification of The Grove, a controversial housing development, could come from the Austin City Council Thursday.
Developer ARG Bull Creek has applied to get a PUD classification so it can increase the density of the development, allowing more homes, business space, and retail space to be included in the development.
But the development has gotten a lot of pushback from neighbors who are concerned about the size and traffic it will add to the area and the City Council has delayed voting on an ordinance to approve the classification numerous times.
During the council work session Tuesday, Mayor Steve Adler suggested council pass the ordinance on first reading, but not include any amendments to change parts of the project. The majority of council members present seemed to support the idea.
They also noted the development is causing quite the rift between neighbors in Central Austin.
"This has become kind of a war zone, battle zone in the neighborhoods that we have neighbors saying really ugly things about each other," said Council Member Sheri Gallo or District 10, the district that would house The Grove.
"It really tugs at your heartstrings because what we see is that this project has produced that type of passion and that type of disagreement and it's just not a good place to be," Gallo added.
Because the project is so hotly debated, Mayor Adler also suggested keeping the public hearing open so people can come back to council and voice their opinions as the amendments are discussed.
If the council does vote Thursday to approve the ordinance on the first reading, it should be noted that this is just a procedural move. It takes three votes for a final approval.
KVUE News will continue to follow council action on the development.
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