McMansion Moratorium For Austin

Decision comes amid conflicting smart growth and neighborhood-level planning approaches, which differ over treatment of larger homes.

"After years of debate over the issue, the resolution of the McMansions issue was swift. Council directed, considered, and passed an interim moratorium on the overstuffed houses at its Feb. 16 meeting. That interim ordinance is expected to hold until early May, when an appointed stakeholders task force is expected to come up with a permanent solution to the problem.

If City Council has held fast to any credo over the last decade, it's the belief that inner-city density is good and suburban sprawl is bad, a principle reinforced at regular intervals by the Planning Commission, Save Our Springs Alliance, and the Sierra Club. That ideal utopia of Austin as a highly dense, highly walkable city has been easy for City Council to embrace because it has rarely been in direct conflict with Council's second tenet, which is to back neighborhoods' input on zoning issues whenever possible, a philosophy articulated by the rise of the neighborhood-planning process in Austin."

Full Story: The Rise of McMansions

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