KEYE-TV - Search Results
Austin Spending $2 Million On Revising 1980's Land Code
Remodeling your house or opening up a business? That may take longer than you expect.
The City of Austin has a backlog of hundreds of permits needed for review.
Austin Americus Diamond was caught in the middle of it.
“We started out on Interstate 35. We were there for 30 years, now we are in the Arbor Walk and we have been here for about 7 months,” said owner Richard Crawford.
Crawford tell us moving to the new location almost cost them their credibility and all their business.
“When my builder went to go get the permit there were problems. We were told it might take 6 weeks to 2 months to get the permit,” said Crawford.
It actually took them 10 months to open their doors.
“All my customers thought we were closed while we did the build out for the move so it was almost like starting over,” said Crawford.
George Adams is with the City of Austin Planning and Review Department. He says they are trying to fix the backlog of permits indefinitely by revising the land development code.
“The code has been amended and Band-Aids have been put on it for years and decades. And generally they are very complicated,” said Adams.
The Code itself is nearly 700 pages long. Starting Tuesday, an 11 person advisory council will volunteer to rewrite it.
Adams says taxpayers will spend $2 million on consultants to oversee the process.
“We want a document that is user friendly, easily understood, that is well organized that people can understand when they can move through it,” said Adams.
However, it will take nearly two and a half years to complete.
Crawford hopes in the time being more businesses will not lose customers.
City Council also approved four new planning positions to address the backlog. The jobs are currently posted, but have not been filled.
Right now there are more than 580 residential review applications. As for commercial buildings, the city tells us it is in the hundreds as well.