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Making Austin Livable

The purpose of the Planning and Zoning Department is to provide planning, preservation and design services to make Austin the most livable city in the country. The City of Austin is committed to improving the experience of residents, small businesses, developers and other stakeholders needing these services. The department has undergone an extensive process to lay the groundwork to making necessary changes for Austin's future. Our major projects include:

Imagine Austin

Imagine Austin is our 30-year plan based on Austin’s greatest asset: its people. The plan lays out a vision for how the city can grow in a compact and connected way.


CodeNEXT is the City of Austin initiative to revise the Land Development Code, determining how land can be used throughout the city – what can be built, where it can be built, and how much can (and cannot) be built.

North Shoal Creek

The city is currently working on a neighborhood plan for the North Shoal Creek neighborhood planning area. When complete, this plan will offer strategies and recommendations as to how North Shoal Creek can become a more Complete Community, examining local land use issues and providing direction for future land use and zoning decisions.

Congress Avenue Urban Design Initiative

As the central spine of downtown Austin and the connection between Lady Bird Lake and the Texas State Capitol, Congress Avenue is arguably Austin’s most prominent street. Despite this, the Avenue lacks the vitality and identity of a great people-centric place. The goal of this effort is to develop an urban design and implementation strategy that results in a human-centric, multi-functional complete street with a clear and attractive identity.

South Central Waterfront Initiative

The South Central Waterfront Initiative will guide public and private investments in this rapidly changing district. The Initiative aspires that every increment of change should contribute toward the Vision of building a district with an attractive pedestrian environment, expanded park spaces and public gathering places, enhanced connections to and along the waterfront, and hundreds of units of affordable housing. This initiative is directed by the South Central Waterfront Vision Framework Plan,4 years in the making and adopted by the City Council in June, 2016. This plan details the overall vision and endorses a cohesive set of recommendations, tools and programs to bring the vision to reality.