Seton Administrative Building, 1345 Philomena Street
10:05 – Meeting Called to Order – John Wooding, President
Attendance ≈ ~40 members
Treasurer’s Report – John Reese Thomas, Treasurer
We got a $2000 grant late in 2019 from Google that goes to the MNA for 2020, and we anticipate most if not all sponsors from 2019 will renew, so we are in healthy condition financially. We had a loss in January because of reserving and paying the petting zoo for the Egg Scramble. We got a $500 grant from DMA already for 2020 so we are almost at a breakeven for year-to-date.
POA Update – Bill Berman
The Rule Committee submitted revised rules for Mueller, and they are on the POA website for review. The changes are largely minor. Comments are welcomed and are due by February 23. You can find a link in the most recent Mueller Messenger. The committee consisted of mostly Mueller residents plus some Catellus participation. The changes are called out at the front of the document.
The Transition Committee has been meeting fairly regularly and we are looking at a new governance structure once we are at the transition point. Today there’s nominally a delegate system, but it’s never been used – instead we’ve always had at-large representation. We’ll move to 7 elected delegates with staggered terms. We have an attorney looking at
We welcome comments and input on WLE, the new landscaper since December 2019. Send your feedback to Patti Thoms or to Bill. They do all their public area work on Thursday. To date there has been largely positive feedback, but in a few cases they have worked on areas that they are not tasked to maintained.
At 3 today, there is a performance in Lake Park with a capella groups from UT and Rice.
There is lots of construction underway, and Amli and a new hotel will break ground soon.
Mueller Commission Update
There was no February meeting so the next meeting will be in March. It’s great to sit in and hear about future plans for Mueller, and the website is a great resource with past meeting minutes, etc.
Art in Public Places Program – E 51st Street – Akirash (Olaniyi Akindity) is doing an installation at 51st and Robert Browning. He is well along on the design and is looking for input to influence his final design. He wants to complement designs on existing Mueller buildings. He wants to incorporate male and female forms and is using ¼” thick metal plates. It will be 72” tall and 24” wide. At an earlier meeting with the MNA, Akirash heard that family and community is very important to residents. He wanted to create forms that reflect humans and give people walking along 51st a comfortable place to pause for a few minutes, so he decided to create chair sculptures that are comfortable and that create conversation starters. He shared models of the sculptures he has envisioned, and he will incorporate some of the found glass from the old Mueller airport that he has collected. On the south side of 51st (the Mueller side), he plans to put chairs between the bus stops. At the north side, in Windsor Park, he is grouping chairs more densely because they don’t have the bus stops. The chairs will also be accessible to people who are using wheelchairs. He is awaiting a decision from the Transportation Department which is planning on moving some of the bus stops. The sculptures will be a permanent installation.
Local Business Spotlight | Bart Glaser
Bart introduced Helen Walker with Ascension Health/Seton. She has been our liaison to them to use the meeting space for general meetings. They are giving a $2500 grant to the MNA and will provide space for us throughout 2020 for general meetings as well. At the May meeting, the new CEO Andy Davis will give an update on the Seton system’s 6 hospitals in Central Texas, as well as on the Dell Medical School.
Ani Colt – On January 25, there was an informational meeting with the vision of ONEderment Central (ONEDermentcentral.com). People who attended gave their feedback, which was largely positive. The Texas A&M Urban Planning & Architecture students who contributed their input on designs worked very hard and provided detailed displays, including video walkthroughs. Nine students from 5 countries participate throughout the fall 2019 semester. Sinclair Black was in attendance and gave great perspectives as well, and he is a very well-regarded Austin architect. This is a development proposed in the are bounded by 51st, Berkman and Barbara Jordan for 8-1/2 acres housing for elderly, low-income, medical offices, retail and a community center. The total project is estimated in the $100-200 million range, some of which is anticipated to be funded by grants.
There will be AARP tax preparation volunteers at Wildflower Terrace the first Friday of March (March 6), and they will do tax assistance for people of any age (but no business taxes). You can sign up at Wildflower Terrace. Foundation Communities also offer tax preparation assistance for people on limited incomes, as they have since the early 2000s.
Vote411.org provides early voting ballots. The League of Women Voters also provides voter guides, and Fiesta is our nearest early polling site.
The following members won a gift card during the gift card raffle: Richard Carr, Vice President and John Wooding. Gift cards awarded (many provided by our MNA sponsors) included:
- $50 for a local restaurant of the winner’s choice in Mueller
- Two pairs of Alamo movie tickets
- Popcorn at the Alamo x 3
- $10 food voucher at the Alamo x 2
10:40 – Meeting Adjourned
Alison Raffalovich, Secretary, March 1, 2020