FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Release Date:
Contact: Jeff Stensland 5129748000Email
AUSTIN, Texas – Making sure new development pays its fair share of its impact on Austin’s roadways, the City Council Thursday adopted Street Impact Fees that will be assessed on new developments to help finance needed roadway capacity improvements. The adopted ordinances incorporate comments from stakeholders and a citizens’ advisory committee gathered throughout the multi-year process.
Impact fees fund public infrastructure required by new development. Across the country, impact fees are used to fund police and fire facilities, parks, schools, streets and utilities. In Texas, the legislature has allowed their use for water, wastewater, street and drainage facilities. The City of Austin has used impact fees to fund water and wastewater improvements since the 1990s.
"This is a big step forward to achieving our mobility goals established by the Austin Strategic Mobility Plan," said Assistant City Manager for Mobility Gina Fiandaca. "Austin keeps growing and our transportation staff has worked hard to find the right balance to have development pay its fair share of infrastructure costs."
Crafting the adopted ordinance began in 2015, when Council authorized funding for the Austin Transportation Department to conduct the technical analysis required to develop a Street Impact Fee. The Austin Strategic Mobility Plan, adopted by City Council in 2019, identifies the implementation of a Street Impact Fee as a funding source for roadway capacity improvements necessitated by new development in a given Service Area.
A Service Area is a geographic area where a unique maximum impact fee is determined. There are 17 Service Areas in the City of Austin, each with projected growth and corresponding capacity needs over a 10-year window. Each Service Area has a diameter of six miles or less.
"The Street Impact Fee combined with our upcoming Transportation Criteria Manual rewrite will help improve predictability and transparency in design standards and financial impact for the development community," said Transportation Director Robert Spillar.
The ordinances will take effect December 21, but fees will not be collected for the first 18 months during which time City staff will work to educate the development community on the new requirements.