The Owana Owl Newsletter, Old West Austin Neighborhood Association, Dec. 2022 Updates


November 30, 2022

Hello neighbors, 

I hope each of you had a relaxing and enjoyable Thanksgiving holiday!

Our next meeting will be Tuesday, December 6, 7pm, at Mathews Elementary School. We will also have a Zoom option - details TBA. At this meeting, we'll be choosing Steering Committee members for next year and voting on a budget. It will be an important meeting to set our priorities for the upcoming year. We will also recognize City Councilmember Kathie Tovo, who represents us in District 9 and who will be leaving the Council this year (there will be cake!).

This will also be my last meeting as Chair of the Steering Committee. It has been an honor to serve this neighborhood that I love so much, and to make many new friends in the process! 

As usual, we've got a lot of information in this edition of the OWL, so get yourself a cup of coffee, a glass of wine, or whatever sounds good and take a few moments to learn about what's happening here in Old West Austin.

Thank you for reading! Please feel free to reach out to us at with any questions. And as always, follow us on Instagram and/or Facebook for quick updates on what's happening in the neighborhood.

Adrienne Goldsberry
Steering Committee Chair



Here's a quick summary of what OWANA has done since our last General Membership meeting. 

1) Zoning: Continuing to review the many development applications in our neighborhood. Based on a vote at the last General Membership meeting, we wrote a letter of support for the large hotel/retail project on 6th St (see the zoning report below). We have also been watching closely the proposed changes to the compatibility standards (see below as well). 

2) Events: Hosted a fun live music event on November 5 at West Austin Park (see photos below!).

3) Community Sponsorship: Sponsored Octoberama, Mathews Elementary School's annual fundraiser. 

General Meeting Info

Our next general membership meeting is on Tuesday,  December 6, at 7pm in the cafeteria at Mathews Elementary School (906 W. Lynn St) and via Zoom (details TBA).

Looking forward to seeing you there! A draft agenda is below; a final one will be available at the meeting.

I. Call to Order (7:00)
II. Approval of Minutes - VOTE
III. Note of appreciation for Councilmember Kathie Tovo
IV. Treasurer's Report/Discussion & Approval of 2023 Budget - VOTE
IV. New Business/Announcements/Special Guests
      A. Introduction of & Voting on New Steering Committee Nominees - VOTE
 V. Committee Reports   
     A. Zoning (see committee report below)
     B. Events 
     C. Membership
     D. Parks
     E. Transportation and Public Safety
VI. Other Business & Announcements
VII. Adjourn

NOTE: Votes can be taken on any agenda item.



We have several nominees for open Steering Committee members that we will vote on at the December 6 meeting. First off, thank you to our departing Steering Committee members Kate Ertle, Maureen Metteauer, Shawn Shillington, and Brandon Wright - we appreciate your service to our neighborhood! 

Steering Committee nominees are:
Paula Hern - licensed social worker, board member of the Clarksville Community Development Corporation, former SC member
Chris Hurst - architect and neighborhood condo board president
Marissa Latta - housing attorney, former SC member
David Schofman - entrepreneur
Adam Sumrall - director at a commercial real estate firm
Erika Tatum - local musician

If advocating for the neighborhood, planning events to foster neighborhood community, etc. sounds interesting to you, please consider joining our Steering Committee for future terms. You can email us at



Thank you to Zoning Committee Chair Sheila Lyon for providing this detailed information. 

1618 Palma Plaza – Old West Austin National Historic District - Case Number: HR-2022-119952 
Proposed 3 detached residences with private garages
Chupik Properties & Design, Inc.
Revised new construction of previously approved project to accommodate 3 detached homes. the existing site has no structures.  At the regular meeting of the Historic Landmark Commission on October 5, 2022 the project was passed on consent.
Status: Case Closed
609 Baylor Street – Castle Hill Local Historic District - Case Number: HR-2022-137402
Proposed rear addition, replace roof, garage apartment, pool and deck
Sydney Steadman – Clayton Korte
The homeowner is proposing to construct a rear addition to the home replace roof and construct a garage apartment, pool, and deck..  Plans include removing the front yard fence, painting the home in a lighter color, and landscaping with many flowers and plants.  At the regular meeting of the Historic Landmark Commission on July 6, 2022 the project was passed on consent.  The applicant had amended the plans to implement the following Architectural Review Committee feedback.  Retain existing front door and porch railing. Do not replace windows at north elevation if opening dimensions will change. Reduce scale of dormers if possible.  At the regular meeting of the Historic Landmark Commission on October 5, 2022 the project was passed on consent.
Status: Case Closed
1214 W 6th Street – West Line National Historic District - Case Number:  2022-108185 SP
Proposed 3 story office building and parking garage along with associated improvements.
Schlosser Development – Rick Duggan
The project was revised to include a 25 foot landscape buffer with trees to reduce the impact the proposed office/retail building will have on the adjacent single family homes to the north.  In addition, the service drive will enter on Winflo Drive and now exit on W 6th Street.  No other changes to the proposed building have been made at this time.
Status: Case Ongoing
900 Blanco St./1202 W 9th St./901 Shelley Ave. – Castle Hill Local Historic District - Case Number: HR-2022-119336
Proposed addition, and alteration of two contributing circa 1910 structures on one lot
Hugh Jefferson Randolph Architects
Combine two existing, contributing residential structures-a ‘two story garage aka carriage house’ (unit A-addressed as 901 Shelley Ave) with the ‘existing house and walk-out basement’ (units B&C- addressed as 1202 W. 9th St) into one single-family dwelling unit.
The Architectural Review Committee was generally pleased with the new design and commented that the rotation of the Carriage house presented an unusual solution to an unusual property and made a handsome addition to the Shelly streetscape. The ARC did explain that they were opposed to deconstruction and that only a ‘lift-and-rotate’ method of moving the carriage house was approved. Furthermore, if any further demolition is needed than what the plans call for due to deterioration, for example, the project should return to the HLC. The ARC recommended that the method of moving to be included in plans and that any replacement windows in the Carriage House be 1:1.  At the regular meeting of the Historic Landmark Commission on November 2, 2022 the project was passed on consent..
Status: Case Closed 
1006 Eason Street – West Line National Historic District - Case Number: HR-2022-084089
Proposal to demolish a contributing structure to construct a 2 story single family home
Dustin Johnson
New construction in National Register districts requires Historic Landmark Commission review prior to demolition permit release.  At the regular meeting of the Historic Landmark Commission on November 2, 2022 the project was passed on consent. 
Status: Case Ongoing
W 6th & Blanco  – West Line National Historic District/Castle Hill LHD - Case Number:  C15-2022-0066
The applicant is requesting a variance(s) from the Land Development Code: Article 10, Compatibility Standards, Division 2 –Development Standards, Section 25-2- 1063 (Height Limitations and Setbacks for Large Sites) for a mixed-use retail/office/hotel/condo project.
Richard Suttle for Clarks Village, LP
At the June General Membership meeting, OWANA voted to support a variance request from compatibility height standards of the mixed-use project designed by Herzog & de Meuron.  The project made a point to listen to feedback from the neighborhood to achieve a design that respects the historic fabric of the neighborhood. The mixed-use project is envisioned with more reasonably distributed density that focuses height in the inner portions of the property and implements stepped setbacks along the properties edges including those facing the triggering properties.
The property owner agreed to document all of the promised conditions of the design in a  restrictive covenant that was recorded.  The BOA granted the variance with conditions on October 10, 2022.
At the BOA hearing,  Richard Suttle publicly thanked OWANA for working with them.  In addition, one board member commented on OWANA being very active on issues surrounding the neighborhood.
Status: Case Closed.


We have sent two emails to membership (Nov 4 and Nov 22) about proposed changes to the City of Austin's compatibility standards. Compatibility standards limit the height of structures adjacent to residences. The City of Austin is exploring relaxing these standards in order to accommodate the potential for additional housing units. The listed roads in our neighborhood where these standards would be relaxed are 5th St, 6th St, Lamar Blvd, and MoPac, which means that residences near those roads could be affected.

City staff recommended against the proposal (stating that the proposed amendments 'could create additional administrative burden, while providing a fairly small benefit in terms of additional housing units and affordability'. However, the Planning Commission voted to approve proposed changes at their November 8 meeting. OWANA provided this letter to the Planning Commission in advance of the meeting. 

The City Council will be discussing the proposed changes at their upcoming December 1 meeting. Here is the 
City Council backup information on this agenda item (#56 on their Dec 1 hearing).

If you would like to contact City Council about the proposed amendments, you can send an email here. You can also contact Kathie Tovo at


You have another opportunity to vote in two elections that are important to our neighborhood (but all elections are important!). :) 

The election for the District 9 (of which our neighborhood is a part) City Council seat has gone to a runoff between Zo Qadri and Linda Guerrero

The mayoral election is also a runoff between Kirk Watson and Celia Israel

Early voting runs from December 1 - December 9, 7am - 7pm each day. Election Day is Tuesday, December 13. More information on where and when to vote is here. 

Thank you for being a voter!



It's been a busy few months! Seemed like there was a fun event/s in or near our neighborhood every weekend in October and November! 

Mathews Elementary School's Octoberama on October 29 was a success! They had a turnout comparable to pre-COVID years, and a good time was had by all! OWANA was one of many sponsors for this event, which is the elementary school's main fundraiser. 

Our Live Music in West Austin Park event was also lots of fun! We were lucky to have perfect weather for us after a strong storm the night before. The crowd grew steadily as the evening went on, and all the musicians sounded great! A big thank you to so many:

Our neighborhood musiciansAbove GroundJuneriseJake Andrews and the 9 1/2 Street Project (of which Steering Committee nominee Erika Tatum is a part of!), for participating.

Terry Lickona, longtime neighborhood resident and executive producer of Austin City Limits, for being our excellent 'Master of Ceremonies' for the afternoon/evening. 

Claudette Kazzoun for doing such an awesome job planning this event. She also provided some sweets from Delicious AF

Fibonacci Food for providing us with snacks during the event. 

We hope to do a similar event again soon, so please send us your suggestions, comments, music suggestions, etc, to make the next event a great one. 


Neighborhood Gems

This information was contributed by Ms. Mary Reed, Executive Director of the Clarksville Community Development Corporation (CCDC). 

Curious about the old house at 1703 Waterston Avenue in Clarksville?

Some of you may have walked past the small, old, wooden house set far back from the street and wondered about its history. Maybe you even peered through one of its windows to look inside.
You can satisfy your curiosity because the Haskell House, a museum about Clarksville, is now open to the public on a regular basis: from 1-4pm on the 2nd and 4th Sunday of every month except for December. A trained docent will be on hand to tell you about the House and the people who lived there, the old photos lining its walls, and about the history of Clarksville, an early Freedom Colony established west of the Mississippi in 1871, after the Civil War. Visits to the House at other days and times can be scheduled by contacting the Clarksville Community Development Corporation (CCDC) 
The House is the oldest documented building in Clarksville, a dedicated State of Texas Historic Landmark, and a City of Austin Historic Landmark too. An important part of Austin’s Black history, it’s a tangible reminder of the struggles early Clarksville residents faced, of their determination as formerly enslaved people to create a better life for themselves and their loved ones, and a reminder of the hardships Clarksville residents dealt with in later years because of the 1929 Master Plan, institutional racism and gentrification.
Freedman Peter Tucker, who had been enslaved by former Texas Governor Elisha Pease and his wife Lucadia, built the House in about 1875. The couple owned the Woodlawn Plantation, now known as the Pease Mansion.
Sometime before 1879, Peter Tucker and his wife Betty sold their home to Edwin and Mary Smith, early Clarksville settlers. Mary was the sister of Charles Clark, Clarksville’s founder. She also helped establish the historic Sweet Home Missionary Baptist Church, and early services were often held in the House before there was a church building.
While raising their family in the House, the Smiths, like many other early Clarksville families, took in boarders to help make ends meet. This explains the double doors at the front of the House. One of the Smith’s boarders was Hezikiah Haskell. He fought on the side of the Union, was a Buffalo Soldier, and a member of the Black Cavalry. The Smith’s daughter Catherine and Hezikiah fell in love and married, after which the Smiths deeded their home to their daughter. Catherine and Hezikiah raised their children there, adding additions at the back as their family grew. None of the additions remain.
In 1978, Hezikiah Haskell, Jr. died in the House at the age of 93. Later, the Haskell family deeded the property to the City of Austin.
Today, the CCDC manages and maintains the House under a use agreement with PARD. In addition to operating it as a museum, the CCDC also rents out the House to groups and individuals in exchange for a small donation, and hosts events there.

Neighborhood Gems

Congratulations to neighborhood resident Mary Reed for receiving Preservation Austin's Special Recognition Award for Public Service, one of their Preservation Merit Awards. Ms.Reed will receive her award on December 1 at Preservation Austin's annual banquet. 

The following is an excerpt from Preservation Austin:

"A grassroots advocate with strong community ties, Mary Reed has served on the Clarksville Community Development Corporation board for more than 17 years, many as president, and has lived in the Clarksville neighborhood since 1989. She has worked successfully to build and maintain community through engaging programming and is a champion for the dwindling supply of historic homes in Clarksville, which was first established as a freedom community. Mary was instrumental in saving and landmarking the Mary Baylor House and recently collaborated with neighbors, city staff, and builders to thoughtfully restore the Hezikiah Haskell House.

As Clarksville's representative on the Old West Austin Neighborhood Contact Team and a member of Austin’s Preservation Plan Working Group, Mary helped advocate for funding Phase 2 of the Preservation Plan, which includes robust community outreach efforts and will increase its potential for implementation. As President of the CCDC Mary oversees the staff and fundraising efforts for 10 properties, including single-family homes, duplexes and an ADU that provide low-cost housing to 16 families. The homes are scattered throughout Clarksville and Mary makes sure that the historic and new infill homes are compatible with the character of the neighborhood.

In the face of enormous pressure, Mary has tirelessly advocated for the Clarksville neighborhood, insisting that developers respect the community’s history of inequity, racism, and segregation, and encouraging all Austinites to learn its story of resilience and grit."

Thank you, Mary, for all you do for our neighborhood! 


Community Support

A sincere thank you to our current business members of OWANA! You can find more information about how your business can be part of OWANA here

Nick Deaver Architect 
606 Highland Ave

Eckert Insurance Group 
4005 Banister Ste 130C, Austin, TX 78704

Feel Damn Good ATX Massage (new business member!)
1400 W. 5th St

Flower Hill Foundation
1316 W. 6th Street

Cowan & Associates, PLLC 
1403 West 6th Street
Lawson & Associates Collected Letters - a Wholesale stationery company


OWANA members span many generations! ;) Anyone want to caption this photo?