Project Connect panel looks at planning, equity concerns attached to transit system – Austin Monitor

With the city and county moving forward on the assortment of transit and community development projects included in Project Connect, leaders involved want community members to realize the many other public and private interests that play into the multibillion-dollar effort.
The local real estate and development community who gathered for a recent Urban Land Institute Austin panel heard about how housing, health care, equity and economic opportunity will also be top of mind in the coming years.
As the three-member panel discussed the future of how the city approves and plans for transit-oriented development centers or how the $300 million dedicated toward equity and affordable housing will be used, moderator Mark Bulmash said there needs to be more talk about the full scope of factors connected to the transit expansion.
“We don’t just talk about affordable housing. We really need a systems approach here … it’s about jobs, health care, transportation and all these issues that are being interrelated,” said Bulmash, president of mixed-use and master plan development for Presidium. “All of them need to be considered because we’re applying something incredibly complicated to this city. I’m glad to hear we’re looking at so many aspects that most people don’t even think about.”
Peter Mullan, chief of architecture and urban design for the Austin Transit Partnership, characterized Project Connect as an assortment of programs including rail lines, bus system expansions and the funding allocated to prevent displacement of residents and local businesses.
Mullan said work is taking place on a variety of fronts including the planning for a new transit station at McKalla Place and environmental impact assessment on the new Orange and Blue transit lines.
While acknowledging the need to gather community feedback on what existing residents need and want around transit corridors, he said local leaders will have to listen while making decisions to keep projects on schedule and budget.
“The faster we move, the more we can build and the sooner we can provide these services to the community. We have to be able to be listening at the same time we are moving forward while incorporating these issues into our planning,” he said. “To me this is really a process of complexity management, and we have to be able to do multiple things simultaneously while letting each of those things inform one another.”
That stance drew some pushback from Nefertitti Jackmon, the city’s manager for displacement mitigation, who said historically marginalized communities shouldn’t be shut out of another wave of growth and economic opportunity.
“As we’re seeing the growth in Austin, historically Black and brown communities and vulnerable communities have been shut out of that economic growth and so we want to do something different and center the voices of the community members, to hear from them what they want,” she said.
“We deferred to them to hear what the priority purposes and places were, and what we heard was typically the Eastern Crescent where Blacks had historically been relegated to, as well as areas around the lines being created. There are priorities there where we will direct the investment.”
On the matter of possible friction between neighborhoods located near proposed transit corridors, consultant Stan Wall with HR&A Advisors said the city needs to take steps now to help forthcoming transit-oriented developments create jobs and other opportunities for those who live nearby.
“It doesn’t have to be confrontational when it comes to having density next to existing communities. Those communities might have certain desires and want a type of retail that doesn’t exist today, but the retailer doesn’t want to be there because the demographics aren’t there in terms of density. It’s connecting the needs of the community with what’s also beneficial to the developer.”
Photo made available through a Creative Commons license.
The Austin Monitor’s work is made possible by donations from the community. Though our reporting covers donors from time to time, we are careful to keep business and editorial efforts separate while maintaining transparency. A complete list of donors is available here, and our code of ethics is explained here.
‹ Return to Today’s Headlines
  Read latest Whispers ›
There are so many important stories we don’t get to write. As a nonprofit journalism source, every contributed dollar helps us provide you more coverage. Do your part by joining our subscribers in supporting our reporters’ work.
Project Connect: This project brought together a series of Central Texas transportation agencies looking to build high-capacity transit options in the region in the wake of CAMPO’s 2035 regional transportation plan. The City of Austin’s much-discussed 2014 Urban Rail plan was part of Project Connect’s efforts.
Urban Land Institute
Austin would effectively emit zero greenhouse gases 10 years earlier than previously planned if a new proposal from city staff comes to fruition – but the goal would require a dramatic acceleration of the progress the city has already made…
At the Mobility Committee meeting on Friday, City Council members fielded discussion about both Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Project Connect and the Texas Department of Transportation’s involvement in the Interstate 35 expansion plan. Meanwhile, community members calling in to the…
Chad Swiatecki is a 20-year journalist who relocated to Austin from his home state of Michigan in 2008. He most enjoys covering the intersection of arts, business and local/state politics. He has written for Rolling Stone, Spin, New York Daily News, Texas Monthly, Austin American-Statesman and many other regional and national outlets.
Read more stories by Chad Swiatecki
For better, more complete coverage of the City of Austin and the region, click here.
Enter a search term below to search the Austin Monitor.
Five days a week, we bring you the news. Austin Monitor is owned by the Capital of Texas Media Foundation, which purchased the publication on Oct. 4, 2013. We stick to the facts. We strive to get it right and be fair to all; when we err we correct it fast.
© Copyright 2021 Austin Monitor. All rights reserved.


128 thoughts on “Project Connect panel looks at planning, equity concerns attached to transit system – Austin Monitor”

  1. Heya i am for the first time here. I came across
    this board and I find It really helpful & it
    helped me out a lot. I hope to give one thing back and help others like you aided me.

  2. We stumbled over here from a different web address and thought I should check things out.
    I like what I see so now i’m following you. Look forward to checking out your web page repeatedly.

  3. you are in reality a good webmaster. The web site loading velocity is incredible.
    It kind of feels that you are doing any unique trick. Also, The contents are masterpiece.
    you’ve performed a wonderful job in this topic!

  4. Hey this is somewhat of off topic but I was wanting to
    know if blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you have to manually code with HTML.

    I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding experience so I wanted to get
    guidance from someone with experience. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  5. Do you have a spam problem on this website; I also am a blogger, and I was curious about your situation; many of us
    have created some nice practices and we are looking to exchange
    methods with others, be sure to shoot me an e-mail
    if interested.

  6. Wonderful beat ! I wish to apprentice while you
    amend your site, how could i subscribe for a blog website?
    The account aided me a acceptable deal. I had been a little bit acquainted of this your broadcast offered bright clear idea

  7. Superb post but I was wanting to know if you could write a litte more on this topic?
    I’d be very thankful if you could elaborate a little bit more.
    Many thanks!

  8. Hi there this is kind of of off topic but I was wanting to know if blogs use WYSIWYG
    editors or if you have to manually code with HTML.
    I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding knowledge so I wanted to get advice from someone with experience.
    Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  9. Thank you for any other fantastic post. Where else may anybody get that kind of info in such an ideal way of writing?
    I’ve a presentation next week, and I’m at the look
    for such information.

  10. Hi, I do think your blog might be having web browser compatibility issues.
    Whenever I look at your website in Safari, it looks fine however when opening in IE, it’s got some overlapping issues.
    I merely wanted to give you a quick heads up!
    Aside from that, fantastic blog!

  11. Oh my goodness! Incredible article dude! Thank you,
    However I am going through issues with your RSS.
    I don’t understand why I can’t subscribe to it. Is there anyone else getting the same RSS issues?
    Anybody who knows the solution can you kindly respond?


  12. Simply desire to say your article is as surprising.
    The clearness to your publish is simply spectacular and that i can suppose you are a professional on this subject.

    Well together with your permission allow me to grasp your feed to
    stay up to date with forthcoming post. Thank you 1,000,000
    and please carry on the gratifying work.

  13. I simply could not go away your web site prior to suggesting
    that I actually enjoyed the usual information a person supply for your guests?
    Is going to be back regularly in order to investigate cross-check new posts

    Look into my page – coupon

  14. I’m now not certain where you are getting your information, but
    good topic. I needs to spend a while studying more or working out more.
    Thanks for magnificent info I used to be in search
    of this information for my mission.

  15. Fantastic items from you, man. I’ve be aware your stuff prior to and you’re just too great.

    I really like what you’ve obtained right here,
    certainly like what you are saying and the way during
    which you are saying it. You make it entertaining and you still care for
    to keep it smart. I can not wait to read far more from you.
    This is actually a great website.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.