To Keep You Informed, June 5, 2020

June 05, 2020 10:56 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

Walkable Places/Transit Oriented Development ordinances advance to City Council

The Planning Commission met Thursday, May 28, with the consideration of Walkable Places and Transit Oriented Development ordinances at the top of the agenda. TOD streets are determined by proximity to rail stations along with other criteria, and will include nearly half of streets in Museum Park as either primary TOD streets (mandatory) or secondary TOD streets (opt-in). See map here.

Designed to promote denser housing near transit stations, TOD ordinances ease certain developer requirements including parking requirements.  The ordinances also provide reduced setbacks that give developers more buildable area allowing larger buildings closer to the street. Developers will be required to provide among other benefits wider sidewalks, a safety buffer (area between street and sidewalk), and landscaping along the streets. Several MP streets are lined with heritage trees, which give Museum Park its distinctive character and which may well be impacted by the reduced setbacks. For detailed description of TOD, see here

Because of the complexity of the ordinances and the difficulty in parsing the impact on Museum Park, several residents, including Museum Park Super Neighborhood President and MPNA President, attended the virtual meeting with specific requests:

  • Hold additional public meeting(s) to better assist residents in understanding the complexities of the ordinances.
  • The existing buffering ordinances are not part of the WP/TOD ordinances and as currently written do not require noise, light, garage, or wind shielding for residential properties on transit corridors. Prior to enacting WP/TOD these ordinances must be updated and strengthened in collaboration with potentially impacted property owners.
  • Recognize the unique qualities of the neighborhood, a destination for 12 million visitors a year to the cultural institutions, museums and Hermann Park.
Additionally, District D CM Carolyn Evans Shabazz, At-large Council Members, David Robinson and Sallie Alcorn spoke at the Planning Commission on behalf of the requests sought by the residents. CM Letitia Plummer provided a letter of support.  

Despite the requests to defer action on Museum Park, the Planning Commission voted unanimously to advance the Transit-Oriented-Development and the Walkable Places ordinances to City Council.

MPNA will continue to work in concert with Museum Park Super Neighborhood to secure additional public engagement with the Planning Department so that all Museum Park neighbors can understand the changes that will impact the neighborhood. At the same time we will continue to seek changes in the buffering ordinances that will protect our neighborhood as development continues.

Thanks to HPD's South Central Station


MPNA VP Pam Campbell along with HPD Officers Thomas and Gentry.

On behalf of the entire neighborhood, MPNA purchased and delivered 50 rotisserie chickens (per HPD menu request) to officers of South Central Command Station, Thursday, June 4.  Our neighborhood is thankful for the service of these officers and during these stressful times, it is especially appropriate to show Museum Park’s gratitude.

Miller Outdoor Theatre Performances Cancelled Through July 30

In accordance with the CDC’s most recent guidelines, the Miller Theatre Advisory Board is cancelling all performances through the end of July 2020.  

“Regretfully the fireworks will not take place this year. Hoping that we will be able to have fireworks for July 4, 2021,” Cissy Segall Davis, Director, Miller Outdoor Theatre.

MPNA Community Engagement team still hopes to schedule our annual Miller Outdoor Theatre social in the fall.

Museum Park residents and stakeholders are encouraged to post notices regarding the cultural institutions in Museum Park on the MPNA Facebook page.

                                  

                                          

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Copyright 2020 Museum Park Neighborhood Association
The Museum Park Neighborhood Association is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization in Houston Texas.