Leander Approves Transit Oriented Development (TOD) plan

Posted in Commentary, Leander, Transportation, Uncategorized, Williamson County at 9:46 am by wcnews

Via the Hill Country News, Leander approves TOD plan.

Leander citizens packed the Pat Bryson Municipal Auditorium last Thursday to see if fireworks would happen over the concept plan for Transit Oriented Development. The plan went before the Planning and Zoning Commission at a special-called meeting at 6 p.m. and then before the council’s regularly-scheduled meeting at 7 p.m. Both the council and P and Z passed the plan with only one dissenting vote each.

A few residents spoke out against the concept plan during the council meeting, saying there are no connector roads between Old Town Leander and the TOD.

Dr. Frank Stiles said that although he wanted to see the area around the TOD “succeed and develop,” the council should listen to those who show concern about projects. He waved his arm and said, “See all these people out here? This is Old Town Leander. This is who’s on the seal,” referring to the city seal on the wall behind the council.

The TOD is an area between U.S. 183 and 183A around the Leander Park and Ride. It will be north of CR 269. The area will have mixed use development that will include eight-story condos, businesses, shops, restaurants and entertainment, and everything will be within a 10-minute walk. The concept is to have everyone within walking distance to mass transit.

The City of Leander’s web site has more information on TOD. This is part of the concept of “New Urbanism”. To learn about it go here (Wikipedia page), and to Congress for the new Urbanism. Here’s a humorous take on the concept.

This concept, like any other, has good and bad points. It’ll be interesting to see how the concept goes over in Leander where it will be tied to a transit hub. The jury is still out on it around the country, and much less is known about if it will be embraced in places like suburban Texas, where automobiles have reigned supreme for so long.

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