Monthly Archives: June 2007

2007 Block Captains

Block Captains

Please see the color coded map above to determine who is your block captain.

Please consider helping out your neighborhood by becoming a block captain. It requires walking around to your friends and neighbors house rarely more than 6 times a year. If you’re interested, please let a board member know, or email me at riverroadna@gmail.com

Thanks.

Board Opposes Garage – and other June Highlights

The following motion was put forth by Larry DeMartino:

That the River Road Neighborhood Association Board opposes the proposed parking garage at Tuleta Drive and Avenue “B” also that a Committee of the Board be immediately selected by the Board to appear at City Council and all other City Boards & Commissions to represent the position of the Board and Association. This Committee shall maintain contact with Board Officers and Members and shall attend all required events relating to this matter in Brackenridge Park lands.

This motion was unanimously approved by all board members present (3 board members were absent, and 2 recused themselves of both discussion and vote.)

Highlights from the Meeting:

  • Hector Gonzales was made official Parliamentarian for the Meeting
  • The representative from Via was not able to attend
  • The board elected to limit board member statements to 5 minutes and audience statements to 3 minutes.
  • The Garage Committee was formed to convey the board’s decision, to track of the project’s progress, and to report back to the board regularly.
  • The neighborhood desperately needs someone to organize the 4th of July festivities
  • Chris Green has created a master “index” of the RRNA archives. Copies of this index will be given to the current Secretary, President, and published on the website.
  • Chairperson of the Neighborhood Conservation District, Barbara Witte-Howell reported that the current the neighborhood has the choice of pursuing the current NCD plans or drafting new ones. There will be someone from the city to speak on this at the next meeting.

The Garage Committee is in the process of drafting a letter to all responsible and affected entities involved with the Brackenridge garage.  The RRNA Board will review this letter before it is distributed early next week.

June Meeting Agenda

21 June 2007 – Lions Field Club House – 7p-8:45p

7:00 Welcome and Introductions including designated meeting parliamentarian

7:10 Special Guest Speaker – VIA Transit Representative

  • VIA presentation
  • Board and meeting attendees discussion about Via bus service to the neighborhood.

7:40 Review and Approve Minutes of last meeting.

7:45 Committee Reports

  • River and Park Care- replacing cut trees in park along River Road.
  • Traffic- Request for SAWS traffic to remain on access road.
  • Drainage- Status of FEMA map
  • Neighborhood Annual and Special Events- 4th of July plans
  • Communications- email/ website/ newsletter content
  • Treasurer- Texas Non-Profit payment and filing fee.

8:00 Old Business

  • Transfer of Board archives to current Board Secretary
  • Public Works presentation explaining how homeowners will be effected by new flood line continued postponement until July or August

8:05 New Business

  • City of San Antonio plans to construct a parking garage in Brackenridge Park

8:35 Other Business

8:40 Announcements

  • Status of NCD
  • Next month’s speaker will be rainwater harvesting experts

8:45 Adjournment and Room Clean Up

Spay or Neuter Your Pet This Friday

Pets

Please let people know that the Snap van will be at Lions Field on Friday. They open at 7:30 AM. They offer free or low cost Spay-Neuter clinics for animals at least 4 months old. No food or water after 10 PM. For more informaion call 673-7722 or web site http://www.snapus.org. Rita, from The Little Aussie Bakery, said that each household in our neighborhood qualifies for one free “de-sexing” per home. Please let everyone know. We have a lot of un-fixed pets. Or maybe adopt a feral cat for the day and help reduce the wild cat population.

Compliments of Terri Gorler

We would like to compile a list of locations and prices for Spay & Neutering Services. If you know of a place, please comment below. Thanks.

Neighborhood Rally Garage-in-the-Park

Rally-07
A number of individual members of RRNA and other residents/property owners are hosting a RALLY to be held on this Wednesday evening June 20, 2007.

Music arranged by Jim Cullum, paletas and information on the proposed garage-in-the-park will be available from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. The event will be held on the property of Myfe Moore at the corner of River Road and Armour Place; the site of last October’s “music event” during the annual garage sale.

Attendees are asked to enjoy, but respect Ms. Moore’s newly established tree plantings. Activities will be limited to the broad driveway area. Bring chairs if so inclined. The press and public officials are invited.

Thanks, Christopher J. Green

Additionally Chris Green has provided the following information in contrast to what was written in the prior Brackenridge Garage post.

1. The Trustees of the Witte Museum (who mostly live outside the City) now control over 8 acres of Brackenridge Park for their exclusive use.

2. The Witte Museum now wants another acre of land in the Park to construct a 40,000 sq. ft. 340- car parking garage with $1,750,000 of your bond issue money.

3. If you are surprised that your bond issue money is being spent for the garage- in-the-park so is the Bond Issue Co-Chairman Aurora Geis who’s Bond Committee turned the Witte’s request down.

4. The Witte’s claim to only 79 parking spaces is untrue and disputed by the 2001 River Road/Brackenridge Park Access and Circulation Report commissioned by the City of San Antonio.

5. The 30,000 sq. ft. garage presented to City officials is now 40,000 sq. ft. and still growing.

6. When the garage site in the Park was 30,000 sq. ft. the number of trees within the building foot print stood at 144 including, primarily, cedar elms (133) and oaks (11) ranging in size from 6”- 38” in trunk diameter. With an increase in the size of the garage to 40,000 sq. ft. plus an added construction zone trees lost are closer to 200 not counting additional losses involving the relocating (and shortening) of several hundred feet of the tracks of the Brackenridge Eagle.

7. What the Witte calls “Its Campus” is in reality Your Park.

Sincerely, Christopher J. Green

Witte Master Plan Meeting for River Road

Our River Road Neighborhood Association chairman, Roy Schweers, received the attached invitation from the Witte Museum. This meeting will give everyone interested in the museum’s Master Plan expansion and the city’s proposed garage in Brackenridge Park, across Tuleta from the museum, an opportunity to learn exactly what’s being planned.

witte-river-update.jpg

Now that River Road residents will have a chance to see the Witte & City’s plans first hand, perhaps we can use this site to compile a list of concerns and questions that will help everyone better understand what the future holds for Brackenridge Park.

  • What other sites have been considered for additional parking spaces?
  • How many parking spaces are currently considered museum parking spaces?
  • What percentage of Witte expansion or garage will be under private ownership or control?
  • Has the final location or size of the garage been determined?
  • Exactly how many cars will the current design hold? What will be it’s footprint?
  • What percentage of the garage will be on virgin land vs. the old city nursery?
  • Where will the city funds to pay for the garage come from? Bond? Other?
  • How many trees will be cut down? Relocated?
  • How close will the structure be to any historic (+300yr) trees?

If there are any questions you would like to ask, please leave them in the comments below.

Articles of Incorporation, Significant Actions & Their History

The following three files were submitted by Chris Green & Larry DeMartino pertaining to the Brackenridge parking garage issue. The first file contains the original Articles of Incorporation from 1977, where the Association lays out it’s non-profit status, purpose, etc. The second file contains Chris’ “composite of significant actions” taken by the RRNA over the years which may pertain to the proposed garage. And the third file lays those actions out in a timeline (which I’ve included in this article below).

 

Brief history of selected actions by
River Road Neighborhood Association
pertaining to Brackenridge Park

1977

1. The RRNA was formed expressly for the purpose of stopping the widening of Mulberry through Brackridge Park as a four-lane divided roadway. When halted, while under construction, the following changes were made:

  • Mulberry was removed from the SABCUTS status as a major throughfare and downgraded to a park road as it had always been.
  • The bridge over Catalpa-Pershing drainage was narrowed to 1-lane, each way, and the bridge over the S.A. River was removed from the contract.
  • Mulberry was left at its current width and left uncurbed.
  • The savings of several hundred thousand dollars was used to plant trees along the Catalpa-Pershing drainage channel and in the golf course.

1979

2. RRNA, unsatisfied with the lack of public participation in the preparation of the Brackenridge Park Master Plan prevailed upon the City Manager to form the B.P. Master Plan Advisory Committee. Arthur “Hap” Veltman, Chair of RRNA, was elected committee chairman and Larry DeMartino of the City Fine Arts Commission, its vice-chairman. The committee met eight times and its report, approved by RRNA, is included in the park master plan document pp 56-59.

1980’s & 1990’s

3. RRNA petitions the CSA (City of San Antonio) to close low-water crossing at Woodlawn and erect cedar bollards along River Road.

4. RRNA files suit against South Texas Sports in effort to protect Brackenridge Park against incursions from a professional sports team’s use of Alamo Stadium. RRNA prevails in the Supreme Court of Texas.

5. RRNA prevails at City Council to stop the leasing of park land to developers for the construction of condos along Hildebrandt.

6. RRNA & San Antonio Conservation Society stop expansion of parking between Witte Museum & Broadway due to the large number of trees in the area.

2000’s

7. RRRNA prevails in effort to cease privatization efforts by the CSA for the Sunken Gardens & Sunken Gardens Theater.

8. RRNA succeeds in a 20-year effort to remove Park consessionair, Phil Sheridan from the park and endorses the SA Zoo as the operator of the Brackenridge Eagle.

9. RRNA requests the CSA undertake a traffic study of the Park. At a cost of $50,000 the River Road/Brackenridge Park Area Access and Circulation Study is completed by Wilber Smith Associates. The study on page 4-3 identified 714 parking spaces within a ¼ mile walking distance of the Witte, should the City proceed with its current plan to construct a 250-car lot upon the site of the City Plant Nursery. The study requested a tree inventory be undertaken. (The Tree Survey shows the need to remove almost 200 trees to accommodate the Witte garage.) All this is a far cry from the Witte’s claim of 79 parking spaces.

10. RRNA & San Antonio Conservation Society discuss plant nursery parking lot with Councilman Schubert and Witte Museum asking that drawings for lot by Saldana and Associates accommodate “pervious parking materials.”

Others:

  1. RRNA requests CSA to remove toxic chemicals from golf course mainance facility due to potential pollution of SA River.
  2. RRNA requests SAWS to remove piping on Brackenridge Golf Course that was delivering contaminated drinking water to River Road residents.
  3. RRNA requests, and obtains, removal of park trail along stables property before it became street access for future stables site development.
  4. RRNA requests, and obtains, removal of “industrial“ zoning adjacent to the Park. (Stables property)
  5. RRNA request, and obtains, the removal of power lines along Mulberry – they are subsequently buried.
  6. RRNA undertakes tree planting in Davis Park, along 281, and the SA River and within the Neighborhood.

Thanks for compiling all this information for us Chris & Larry.

Download the Files: Articles of Incorporation, Composite of Significant Actions, & the Timeline .