FAN Transit Policy Workshop
Sunday, October 8, 2017 at 12:00 pm
Pioneer Bank Community Room @ 623 W. 38th St.
Roger L. Cauvin
David expressed his passion for eliminating minimum parking requirements. To his knowledge, FAN is the only organization that has come out, in its CodeNEXT recommendations, to eliminate off-street parking requirements citywide. This issue spurred his interest in FAN and attending the meeting. He sees eliminating minimum parking requirements as achieving better aesthetics, lower carbon emissions, and more prosperous small and local businesses.
What are the types of recommendations that should come out of FAN regarding mobility? Specific projects and lines, goals, metrics? Perhaps one possible metric is jobs accessible via transit. Perhaps ensuring accessibility to grocery stores and healthy food should be a special focus. Perhaps the original complete communities indicators from Imagine Austin should drive strategic mobility planning.
Possible areas to weigh in:
According to Girard, many Cherrywood neighborhood residents are supportive of density, transit, and walkability without going too far in densifying the interior of the neighborhood. Though he agreed with 90% of them, Girard saw some of the FAN CodeNEXT recommendations as not sufficiently embracing the use of transects, and favoring too much change too fast in the interior of neighborhoods. He also expressed concern about completely eliminating minimum parking requirements.
Girard urged that simple radii can be a misleading way of measuring accessibility, and that actual walk sheds are more accurate.
Local amendments to national and international codes do not go through a standard public process in Austin. 25 foot clearance for emergency vehicles has been in the local code (national is 20 feet) for a while, but there are many exceptions. The fire marshall removed all the exceptions in presenting it to City Council.
The group discussed a possible overarching theme of “access”, “accessibility”, or “connectivity” guiding strategic mobility planning.
Aesthetics of transit infrastructure may be an important consideration.
Dedicated guideway is more effective in shaping land use due to its relative permanence.
Prior to the meeting, FAN member Mike Dahmus had offered his thoughts here.