The Alamo Manhattan Developers have formally submitted a project to build a multi-family 210 unit apartment complex at Broadway and Austin Hwy. The project will be presented to the Architectural Review Board on Oct. 15, 2013 at 5:30 pm at the temporary City Hall on Austin Hwy. The project appears to be unchanged from the public presentation the developer made last August at Cambridge Elementary.
The building height will range between 47ft and 65 ft. The maximum height permitted by City Code for multi-family is 35 ft, although commercial building height can be 40 ft. Since the project is being proposed as “mixed-use” with both multi-family and retail it may come under the commercial code even though the retail portion represents only 5% of the total area at 4,000-5,000 sf.
The complex is approximately 200,000 gross square feet plus parking (underground). To put that into perspective, the proposed project will be three times the size of Central Market. (68,380 sf per Bexar County Appraisal). The most controversial part of the project is the request by the developer to acquire four parcels of public land/rights-of-way (pink), thereby doubling the project size from 0.835 acres to 1.653 acres.
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The two most popular ways to go from Austin Hwy to Broadway North , Ausway Lane and Ellwood, would be eliminated by Alamo Manhattan’s proposal.
Alamo Manhattan originally wanted the Ausway Park for their project but dropped that request after community resistance. However, since they are proposing to own the land immediately adjacent to the Park it effectively becomes the “front yard” for the apartment complex.
Alamo Manhattan’s continued pursuit of this project has caused some political chatter. Claims of a behind the scenes “deal” are doubtful and are just the start of the next election cycle.
Any developer has the right to propose any project they want, all the way to a final decision of the Council, and it proves nothing as to the current position of the Mayor and Council toward the project. Any infringement by the City of this right may have legal ramifications and the Council and Mayor need to remain silent until it reaches them for a decision, if it gets that far.