City of Austin

Arts and Culture
4:41 pm
Mon January 3, 2011

Emerging Artists Get Seven Extra Days To Apply For $65,000 City Contract

This is where the city will build a African-American Cultural & Heritage Facility. Emerging artists are encourage to apply for a grant to create a work of public art at the location.
Image courtesy City of Austin and Google Maps

Artists have an extra seven days to get their act together and write a proposal to create public art at the new the African-American Cultural & Heritage Facility. The building will be constructed at 912 East 11th Street near Branch Street.

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Environment
3:01 pm
Mon January 3, 2011

Plastic Bags Could Be Banned In Austin

Plastic shopping bags will be banned in Brownsville this week. Austin is reportedly considering another attempt to do the same thing later this year.
Image by KUT News

Austin city leaders have been talking about banning plastic bags at stores for a while, but signs for such an ordinance look strong this year. 

“We have a report that we’ve been working on, on the cost impact of plastic bags. That study has been presented to City Hall, we hope to have that in the hands of city council within a couple of weeks,” said Bob Gedert, the City of Austin’s Solid Waste Services director.

That report has not been released to the public yet.

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Austin
2:37 pm
Fri December 31, 2010

ANY Plans for New Year's?

A fireworks show will cap tonight's "Austin New Year's" celebration at Auditorium Shores
Image by Erika Aguilar/KUT

New Year’s Eve 2011 will look a little different in downtown Austin tonight. The bar and club scene will be about the same. But there won’t be a “First Night Austin” celebration, as there has been in years past.

In fact, this will be the first New Year’s Eve in six years where there has been no “First Night Austin” celebration. Organizers announced at the end of September that they didn’t have the money to stage the family-friendly downtown party this year. They’re hoping to be back to ring in 2012.

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Transportation
9:46 am
Fri December 31, 2010

Tell The City What You Think About Extending Parking Meter Hours

Callie Hernandez for KUT News

If you're driving downtown for New Year's Eve celebrations, you'll be able to park on the street for free after 5:30 p.m. That would change to midnight under a proposal being considered by the city, and local officials want to know what you think about it.

Outside of downtown, the change would see street parking meters remain in effect from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. instead of the current hours of 8:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

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Environment
12:27 pm
Tue December 28, 2010

Holly Power Plant Demolition Bidder Gets Litigious

Image by Caleb Bryant Miller for KUT News

CST Environmental, a company based in San Leandro, California, is suing the city because it wasn't awarded a bid to demolish a decommissioned power plant in East Austin, according to the Austin Business Journal.

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Austin
12:21 pm
Wed December 22, 2010

City Names Sole Finalist For Shelter Director

Photo courtesy Town Lake Animal Center

Austin City Manager Marc Ott has named Abigail Smith the sole finalist for the chief animal services officer position.  In a memo to the Mayor and City Council Members, Ott said the city received many positive comments about Smith -- who's currently the executive director of the Tompkins County SPCA in Ithaca, NY.

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Austin
1:15 pm
Thu December 16, 2010

Remembering Jennifer Gale

Jennifer Gale was ever-present at Austin city council meetings
Photo courtesy flickr.com/Patrick Dentler

The Austin city council opened today's council meeting with a tribute to Jennifer Gale.  Gale was ever-present at council meetings and ran for Mayor and several other elected positions over the years.  She was also homeless.  Gale was found dead two years ago tomorrow in front of a church near the UT-Austin campus.

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Austin
4:12 pm
Fri December 3, 2010

Austin Fire Department Receives 1,400 Job Applications in Three Days

Austin firefighters battle a car fire in 2009. AFD is looking to fill 100 vacancies and has been overwhelmed with applications.
Image courtesy Sheeshoo http://www.flickr.com/photos/sheeshoo/

Whether it's the coolness of being a firefighter or the higher-than-average unemployment rate in Travis County, the Austin Fire Department is being deluged with applications as it seeks to hire a record number of firefighters.

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Environment
4:42 pm
Thu December 2, 2010

City Looks at Converting Garbage Stench into Electricity

Organic material rotting in landfills emits methane-rich biogas, which can be captured and converted to energy.
Image courtesy D'Arcy Norman http://www.flickr.com/photos/dnorman/

That horrible stench you smell near garbage dumps? There's energy in those fumes!

Until fairly recently, the technology used to capture methane-rich biogas and turn it into electricity was not taken seriously as an industrial energy source. That's changing. And now the City of Austin is seeing if it should get on board.

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Austin
3:22 pm
Thu December 2, 2010

City Measuring Austin's Tech Savviness With Paper Survey

Austin is known as a high tech hub, but not everyone in the city can afford a laptop. Local officials want to measure that digital divide.
Image courtesy stetted http://www.flickr.com/photos/sunlitrain/

The City of Austin is sending out 15,000 surveys to randomly selected people across town to find out what kind of technology they use.

The survey is not available online, only as a paper questionnaire, so that the results won't skew towards people with home internet access.

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Environment
3:37 pm
Wed December 1, 2010

Lake Austin Will Drop By Twelve Feet Next Month

Lake Austin will drop by 12 feet next month to help fend off invasive plants.
Image courtesy atmtx http://www.flickr.com/photos/atmtx/

Annoying, non-native plants are growing out of control in Lake Austin, and the city is asking the Lower Colorado River Authority to drop lake levels next month to help fend them off. Lake Austin is a stretch of the Colorado River between the Mansfield and Tom Miller dams.

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environment
3:57 pm
Fri November 19, 2010

City of Austin To Produce Reality TV Show On Reducing Waste

Image courtesy kingdesmond1337 http://www.flickr.com/photos/kingdesmond/

The City of Austin's Solid Waste Services Department says it's going to produce a new reality TV program called Dare to Go Zero. The show would air on City of Austin's government channel and is aimed at encouraging Austinites to throw less garbage into the landfill.  KUT News spoke with the City of Austin Solid Waste Services spokesperson Jennifer Herber about the project.

KUT News: What's this idea behind the reality show?

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austin
11:48 am
Tue November 16, 2010

Cathedral of Junk Can Live On, Just Not as "Tourist Attraction"

A City of Austin news release issued today says the Cathedral of Junk can live on, but can't be promoted as a tourist attraction.
Photo by Mose Buchele for KUT News

The City's Planning & Development Review Department issued a news release this morning saying that the City of Austin and the Cathedral of Junk reached an agreement to keep the structure on the property.



KUT News reported in June that the Cathedral of Junk would be allowed to remain, after city inspectors initially told owner Vince Hannemann to destroy the bizarre attraction.

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