Texas Judge Reverses Three Austin Zoning Reforms

The ruling impacts ordinances passed in 2022 aimed at increasing housing density and supporting mixed-use development.

1 minute read

December 14, 2023, 8:00 AM PST

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Texas Capitol Building

RoschetzkyProductions / Shutterstock

A Travis County District Court judge in Texas ruled against the city of Austin in a lawsuit challenging multiple zoning ordinances passed by the city in 2022. According to an article by Jo Clifton in the Austin Monitor, “All of the ordinances were designed to allow more residential units in areas not previously considered appropriate for housing. But Council will have to start over in enacting the Vertical Mixed Use Ordinance as well as the Residential in Commercial Development program and the Compatibility Ordinance, all of which were approved in 2022.” 

The judge ruled a fourth ordinance challenged in the lawsuit, Affordability Unlocked, can go forward. Lawyers for the plaintiff in the lawsuit, Doug Becker, say they are now “assessing the legality” of the Home Options for Middle-Income Empowerment (HOME) passed last week by a vote of 9-2 and are fundraising to challenge future zoning reform proposals.

Tuesday, December 12, 2023 in Austin Monitor

Ornate, tan stone capitol building with a gold dome roof and low-rise city buildings in the background.

States Are Banning Guaranteed Income Programs

Four states now have laws in place that prevent cities and counties from creating or continuing guaranteed income programs, and several more have tried or are trying.

May 23, 2024 - Bloomberg CityLab

Aerial view of Oceanwide Plaza skyscrapers covered with graffiti tags.

LA’s Abandoned Towers Loom as a “$1.2 Billion Ruin of Global Capital”

Oceanwide Plaza, shuttered mid-construction after its developer filed for bankruptcy, has stood vacant on prime Los Angeles real estate since 2019.

May 21, 2024 - The Architect's Newspaper

Close-up of electric stove range with front burners red-hot.

California Cities Suspend Natural Gas Bans Following Court Ruling

A Ninth Circuit court ruling forced Berkeley to reverse its ban on natural gas in new buildings, prompting other cities to suspend their own efforts to promote all-electric buildings.

May 28, 2024 - East Bay Times

Aerial view of downtown Auburn, Indiana on a clear, sunny day.

Study: Indiana Regional Planning Project Pays Off

The Regional Cities Initiative funded economic development projects and capacity building to help local agencies collaborate more effectively to promote growth.

43 minutes ago - Ball State University

Colorful vacant, boarded-up two-story rowhouses in East Baltimore, Maryland.

States Move to Limit ‘Squatters’ Rights’

A wave of new legislation targets people who reside illegally in properties they don’t own.

1 hour ago - Smart Cities Dive

BART heavy rail train on elevated track pulling into Concord, CA station with cloudy sky and trees in background.

Bay Area Transit Projects Awarded $18 Million

The funding supports eight ‘near-term’ projects slated for completion within the next one to three years.

May 29 - Contra Costa Herald

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.