Hey, remember when we talked about Austin Energy’s new downtown substation — bound for 55 East Avenue smack in the middle of some pretty cool upcoming development — and how it doesn’t necessarily have to suck? We’ve arrived at the actually fun part of that process, voting on your favorite of three design options. These three configurations for screening and beautifying the substation site were developed by Austin Energy after extensive public engagement, some of which we already tried to get you involved in.
Here’s the timeline we’re currently expecting for the substation’s development:
The Austin Energy folks held a meeting last night to show off the three design possibilities they’re currently considering for the walls screening the substation, and the department just launched a new survey for us to tell them which one we like best — and that feedback should help them further refine whatever design ends up being the most popular with the public. You can check out our previous coverage of this project for more info on the context of the substation site, which allows us to cut to the chase and show you the three design options on deck:
Once you’ve taken some time to stare at those three concepts for a while, here are a couple of additional slides showing more general landscaping considerations for the design of the site, which include a few more renderings and might help you visualize how any of the above options could look in the real world:
In addition to the preservation of heritage trees, it’s nice to see they’re planning to widen the sidewalks to Great Streets standards, which will do a lot for walkability on East Avenue considering all the other projects potentially getting built over there in the near future.
If any of those three main design options up there are particularly blowing your mind, please click here or fill out the embedded survey below to give your smartest and cleverest feedback. The survey also gives you the opportunity to vote on a name for the substation from a couple of different options:
I am personally very committed to a good substation on East Avenue, and if you don’t participate in this stuff, you aren’t allowed to complain about it later if you don’t like how it looks. If you see me around town this weekend and tell me you filled out this survey, I’ll buy you a beer, but only after you tell me your favorite design option. (That’s how I’ll know you’re not lying.)