UDC Amendments take effect April 1

Changes to the Unified Development Code that were approved by City Council on February 28, 2017, will take effect on April 1, 2017.  After numerous public meetings over the past year, Council approved several amendments to the code.  Most of these changes were based on previous updates to the City’s Comprehensive (2030) Plan and Elements in prior years.

The newly amended code is now published and available for download. The Development Manual will be updated to reflect those changes.  The red-lined chapters, as part of the Ordinance, will remain on the website so the changes can be seen. The primary changes made to the Unified Development Code from the existing regulations include:

  • Chapter 3 – Development Applications
    • Development Application Order
    • Plat Extensions
    • Establishing a Subdivision Variance process
  • Chapters 6 and 7 – Development Standards
    • Clarified setback requirements
    • Applicability of Chapters
  • Chapter 12 – Pedestrian and Vehicle Circulation
    • Pedestrian and Bicycle mobility
    • Streets
    • Driveways and Easement
    • Road Adequacy Standards
    • Established a formula for existing and future connectivity
    • Intersection spacing
    • Cul-de-sac- protection
  • Chapter 13 – Public Improvements
    • Codification of current practice for requesting voluntary annexation
  • Chapter 16 – Definitions
    • Modified definitions for transportation related items

To view the new UDC in its entirety, please go to the website: https://udc.georgetown.org/unified-development-code/ .

Questions can be directed to planning@georgetown.org.

Trucks with bridge beams affect traffic March 20-24

Next week on Monday through Friday, concrete bridge beams will be delivered at the Southwest Bypass bridge site in southwest Georgetown. Delivery of 120 precast bridge beams in convoys of six trucks at a time will lead to brief road closures on SH 29/University Avenue and on Leander Road at their intersections with I-35. Traffic on the main lanes of I-35 should not be affected. The beam delivery schedule is weather-dependent.

On March 20-22 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day, there will be closures of approximately five minutes in duration on University Avenue at the I-35 intersection. During each closure, Georgetown police will stop traffic on University Avenue to allow for the passage of six trucks carrying 120-foot-long bridge beams. After clearing the intersection, trucks will travel west on University Avenue and then turn south on D.B. Wood Road to reach the bridge site.

On March 23-24 between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. each day, police will close Leander Road at the intersection with I-35 for brief periods to allow groups of six trucks with beams to pass through the intersection. These trucks will travel west on Leander Road and turn north at the Southwest Bypass right-of-way, which is about 600 feet west of Riverview Drive.

Once at the bridge site, each beam will be lifted from the transport truck with two cranes and lowered into place on bridge supports. The steel-reinforced concrete beams are for bridges over the South San Gabriel River and an unnamed tributary that are part of the Southwest Bypass project.

Due to the intermittent closures on SH 29 and Leander Road, drivers should expect traffic delays. Prior to moving through the SH 29 and Leander Road intersections, the trucks will be staging along the I-35 northbound frontage roads in Georgetown.

Southwest Bypass is a new north-south arterial that will connect with D.B Wood Road and Leander Road. The construction contract for the Southwest Bypass has a completion date in late 2018, however the contractor is ahead of schedule.


Fixed-route bus system open house planned for March 21

The City of Georgetown is hosting an open house meeting to share with the public progress on delivering the City’s new fixed-route bus system.

The meeting will be held 4-7 p.m. on March 21 at the Georgetown Public Library, 402 W. Eighth St.

At the open house meeting, attendees will be able to learn about the Transit Development Plan that was adopted by City Council in September 2016 and the process to develop the fixed-route bus system. City staff will be on hand to discuss the process as well as various aspects of the TDP, including policies that will guide bus fares, discounted fares, service hours and ridership as well as answer attendees’ questions.

Bus service is scheduled to begin in August. City staff has been working with their partners at Capital Metro, Capital Area Rural Transportation System, the Georgetown Health Foundation, The Caring Place and Faith in Action Georgetown to refine service planning recommendations to present to City Council. The council is expected to consider adoption of the policies during its regularly scheduled March 28 meeting.

For more information about the TDP, visit transit.georgetown.org.

Williams Drive Study open house on March 9

Georgetown residents, business owners and civic leaders will join the Williams Drive project team on Thursday, March, 9 for an open house showing the conceptual designs for Williams Drive.

Feedback from previous meetings and design events has been conceptualized into a vision for Williams Drive. The recommended approaches will be presented and participants will have an opportunity to provide further input.

The meeting will be 4-7 p.m. in the Georgetown Health Foundation Community Rooms in the Lake Aire Center at 2423 Williams Drive, Ste. 101.

The focus of the Williams Drive Study is to create safe and efficient transportation options while integrating smart land use, community needs, and the future economic growth of the corridor. The Study is a partnership between the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization and the City of Georgetown.

For more information about the study and to sign up for email newsletters, visit transportation.georgetown.org/williams-drive.

Faith in Action Georgetown expands office hours with grant

Georgetown nonprofit Faith in Action Georgetown will begin offering full-day office hours March 15.

The extended hours will allow the nonprofit, which provides transportation services for seniors in Georgetown, to better serve its more than 500 clients, FIAG Executive Director Vickie Orcutt said.

“This grant is about mobility management and coordination,” Orcutt said. “We’ve always scheduled rides all day, but now we will have the administrative support to have full-day office hours, and our clients will benefit from our expanded hours.”

The expanded hours were made possible by a $120,000 Federal Transportation Administration grant awarded through the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization. The City supported the grant, which will allow the nonprofit to work alongside the City’s fixed-route bus system that is expected to launch in August.

The grant will be administered over a two-year period to pay for salaries and program expenses related to the expanded hours.

Orcutt said the grant will allow FIAG to work with the City’s Transit Working Group, which also includes officials from the Georgetown Health Foundation, Capital Metro and the City working together to provide technical and strategic support for the bus system.

Previously, FIAG’s office was open 9 a.m.-noon for client scheduling and coordination; however, the grant will allow the office to open 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

“Not having a car any longer, Faith in Action Georgetown is my only mode of transportation,” said Linda Deal, an FIAG client. “My doctors don’t give me much time in advance, so having those extra hours to call will take the pressure off.”

On Feb. 14, Mayor Dale Ross read a proclamation at Georgetown City Council about Faith in Action Georgetown and their services for area seniors.

FIAG provides transportation for clients age 65 and older who live in Georgetown or the extraterritorial jurisdiction and are able to get in and out of a vehicle without assistance. In 2016, the nonprofit provided more than 6,000 rides to its clients with the help of 215 volunteers. More than 75 percent of rides are for health-related appointments or access to food, Orcutt said.

For more information about volunteering with Faith in Action Georgetown and its services, call (512) 868-9544 or visit www.faithinactiongt.org.

Unified Development Code Amendments Office Hours

The City of Georgetown Planning Department will be hosting office visiting hours for anybody interested in learning more about the amendments, running through specific development examples, and addressing any questions you may have. Dedicated office hours will be held Wednesday, January 4 from  4 to 6 p.m.

To sign up for a specific appointment please email planning@georgetown.org. If a different time or day works better for you please do not hesitate to email us so we can arrange a separate time. UDC proposed changes can be found at udc.georgetown.org/udc-amendments.

Unified Development Code Amendments Proposed

Newspaper AdThe Unified Development Code (UDC) Advisory Committee will hold a public hearing and consider proposed amendments to the UDC on Wednesday, October 12th at 3:00. The proposed amendments primarily pertain to the transportation, utility, and subdivision provisions of the code. The UDC Advisory Committee and City staff have worked throughout the year discussing and refining draft language with the intent to improve City street and sidewalk design and ensure adequate public improvements through development. The draft proposals are now ready for further public discussion and input. The meeting on October 12th will be held at the Historic Light and Water Works Building at 406 W. 8th Street and will be followed by additional public meetings at dates to be determined. The proposed amendments can be found here.


Williams Drive Corridor Study Open House Oct. 6

transpo-blue-green-headerThe City of Georgetown and the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAMPO) are partnering on the Williams Drive Study to plan for the future of the corridor. This study will develop a plan of action that will incorporate safety, efficient transportation operations, safe accommodations of all modes, and integration of smart transportation and land use, community needs, and the future economic growth of Williams Drive between Austin Avenue and Jim Hogg Road.

Public input is an important part of this study and there will be multiple opportunities for the community to offer their ideas for the future of Williams Drive. The plan will recommend improvements that will spur both public and private investment dollars. Possible recommendations may include improvements such as redesigning intersections, synchronized traffic signal timing, vehicle turning lanes, public parking, sidewalks, bike lanes, or transit options.

The first open house public meeting will be held on Thursday, October 6 from 4:30 to 7 p.m. at the Georgetown Health Foundation Community Rooms, 2423 Williams Drive #101, Georgetown, TX, 78628. The purpose of this open house is to introduce the study, purpose, goals, and public engagement process, as well as provide a brief overview of existing conditions along this corridor.

In addition to this open house meeting, a week-long Open Design Studio and Charrette will take place November 12 – 16 that will provide multiple opportunities for stakeholders and the general public to learn about the project and provide feedback. Please mark your calendars – more details will follow.

To learn more about this project, please contact project managers Nathaniel Waggoner, transportation analyst for the City of Georgetown at (512) 930-8171 or Nathaniel.Waggoner@georgetown.org, or Kelly Porter, regional planning manager for CAMPO, at (512) 974-2084 or Kelly.Porter@campotexas.org.

Additional information may also be found online at transportation.georgetown.org/williams-drive or at www.campotexas.org/campo-plans/campo-2045-platinum-plan/georgetown-williams-drive.

Street Sealant Work Update

On Thursday April 28, City crews will be applying black sand to the cul-de-sac on River Rock Drive in order to stabilize the Rejuvenation Street Sealant applied in March.  At approximately 3:00 p.m., as the temperature warms and the sealant softens, staff will apply a thin layer of sand and roller compact it into the street.  On Friday morning, crews will sweep any excess sand and monitor conditions as traffic drives on the roadway.

If the sealant is stabilized, crews will schedule the same application early next week when temperatures are expected to be high enough to activate the material on the following cul-de-sacs: Cobalt Cove, Tea Tree Cove, Cider Orchard Cove, Butter Fly Cove, Rainwater Cove, both cul-de-sacs on Stardust Lane, and Tipps Court.  Following the application on the cul-de-sacs, staff will continue to monitor the streets and intersections for any other reactivation and possible sanding application.  Staff will begin driveway cleaning once the sanding application is completed.

The sealant is used to fill small cracks and prevent oxidation of the road surface to extend the pavement life.  The recent tracking of the sealant in Sun City is the result of the latest applications not curing as rapidly as they have in the past. Tracking began occurring mostly on warm days as pavement temperatures reached 120 degrees, causing the sealant to reactivate. This caused tracking issues into driveways and onto adjacent streets.

Staff has shared this issue with the product manufacturer, and requested a plan of action to prevent further tracking.  The manufacture recommended using dry “blotter sand” to prevent additional tracking.  The sand should adhere to the remaining surface and provide a barrier between the surface and tires.  The City’s contract engineer has suggested following a typical TxDOT maintenance procedure for applying the sand.  Sand will be applied with a truck mounted sand spreader and rolled in with a pneumatic roller.  Once dried, any remaining sand will be removed using the City’s vacuum sweeper.  A black sand will be utilized to blend with the existing road surface.  This application will be performed during the warmest part of the day, when the product is reactivated, so the sand will set with the product.

Transportation Department crews have conducted tests in a vacant subdivision near Interstate 35 to help identify issues leading to the product’s tracking.  Staff performed the sanding procedure on freshly applied sealant in a small area with promising results.  Staff has also applied this application to a small test section in Sun City with similar results.

City crews are monitoring the sealant area daily, and have noticed tracks in the product when temperatures rise and heavy vehicles travel the roadway.  To minimize tire rubber and product tracking, residents should refrain from sharp turns into and on driveways.

No further rejuvenation street sealant applications are scheduled at this time.

Street Sealant Work in Sun City: Updated Dec. 7

Update, Dec. 7: The street sealant work in Sun City has been hampering residential seasonal shopping traffic and local parcel deliveries.  To reduce disruptions, City crews will be finishing the roadways already started and suspending further sealing until after the first of the year. Existing work should be completed by Wednesday, December 9. (See the updated schedule below.)  The sealing will be resumed in January when disruption to residents and crews will be minimized. Notification of the new schedule will be provided after the first of the year.

Below is the schedule for the sealant work, which will happen from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. Rain may cause changes to the schedule. The attached color-coded map (below) shows the sections that correspond to the dates.

Date: Section on map Neighborhood numbers
Monday, December 7 Section 2 40, 41, 43
Tuesday, December 8 Section 2 41
Wednesday, December 9 Section 2 41

The sealant product, also called a rejuvenator application, seals the pavement and slows the oxidation process, extending the life of the pavement. The sealant treatment helps to defer more costly maintenance work.

Look for warning signs and flaggers who will be stationed throughout the neighborhood to provide residents with directions. The sealant will be applied to one half of the road at a time. Once the first half has dried, the second half of the roadway will be treated.

Each application typically takes 30 minutes to an hour to dry. High humidity may extend the drying time.

Crews will work to minimize disruptions during the sealant application process.

Driveway Access Affected:  A small orange cone will be placed in each driveway to signal that the sealant has been applied on the street and is in the 60-minute drying process. Residents should avoid driving on the freshly-applied sealant until the driveway cones have been removed. Flaggers will be present to give instructions on temporary parking locations while the sealant is drying.

Schedule changes: This schedule could vary due to rain, other weather conditions, equipment failure, or product availability. The City will update this schedule if there are changes.

Questions about this street work should be directed to Georgetown Utility Systems Customer Care at (512) 930-3640.

Street Sealant Sun City map 10-21-15