PROTECT YOUR HOME
DEADLINE EXTENDED: File Your Protest by Dec. 5
The City of Austin plans to end single-family zoning and allow many more units on existing residential lots. NOTE: Austinites who protested a previous rezoning plan must file new protests to protect their homes.
About the City’s Plan—and How to Fight It
The Austin City Council plans to allow the subdivision of all residential lots into new, 2,500-square-foot lots and permit three or more units on each new lot. The plan will raise property taxes, force longtime residents to sell, and dismantle Austin’s single-family neighborhoods. Concerned residents should protect their homes by filing neighborhood conservation protests no later than December 5, 2023.
Under this plan, a 5,000-square-foot lot could be subdivided into two lots to hold a total of six units, and a 7,500-square-foot lot could be turned into three lots, with a total of nine units. Larger lots could be subdivided even further and hold dozens of units. This map shows how many housing units could be built on lots in your area and across the city.
When a property owner files a neighborhood conservation protest, the city council cannot rezone his or her property without supermajority support (nine of 11 votes). Neighbors can also band together and file neighborhood conservation protests to protect properties none of them own: When the owners of at least 20 percent of the area within 200 feet of a property slated for rezoning band together and file protests, the city council cannot rezone that property without supermajority support (nine of 11 votes).
IMPORTANT: Austinites who filed protests in response to one of the city’s previous rezoning plans must file new protests in order to protect their homes and neighborhoods from the city’s latest plan.
Protecting your home and preserving your neighborhood is fast and easy! Just fill out our electronic form and we will send your protest to the City of Austin. Click here if you prefer to file your protest by mail.
Frequently Asked Questions
If passed, the council’s plan will drastically increase density in all of Austin’s single-family neighborhoods, quickly raising the tax value of every local property. Forced sales because of tax increases, displacement, and demolitions will become commonplace throughout our community.
Eliminating single-family zoning equals developer deregulation. Instead of city planning deciding where we might reasonably put additional housing and density, developers will put such housing where it makes the most money. It will not be affordable because developers make more profit on high-end homes.
The increased density and subdivision of housing lots will also place an enormous strain on traffic, parking, and other residential infrastructure. This includes parking, traffic, and both stormwater and sewage sewer systems. As of today, City Hall has no infrastructure plan for paying for the infrastructure of tens of thousands of new residents planned for each neighborhood.
The city also plans to increase impervious cover beyond currently allowable limits, worsening flooding and threatening the environmental quality of creeks and other local waterways. In addition, reducing setbacks will reduce the already shrinking tree canopy, as trees will be removed. Increased heights will block solar access to surrounding properties.
A neighborhood conservation protest is the name for a rezoning protest eliminating single-family zoning, which is a longstanding property right enshrined in the Texas Local Government Code. Rezoning protests are intended to protect property owners from unwanted, arbitrary rezonings by city governments, and to ensure that controversial zoning changes have the overwhelming support of the public and local governing bodies before adoption. In March 2022, the 14th Court of Appeals ruled in favor of local property owners in City of Austin v. Acuña, upholding their right to file protests.
Yes. Residents who wish to protect their properties from the City of Austin’s attempt to subdivide housing lots and increase neighborhood density must file a new protest form against the coming anti-single family zoning amendments in order to protect their properties. Your prior protest forms applied to CodeNEXT and compatibility reducaions and not these upcoming changes.
According to Texas law, local officials cannot make zoning changes to any property that is the subject of a valid rezoning protest unless they have the support of a supermajority of the local governing body. In other words, a valid protest indicates the need for greater support for the proposed changes. Neighbors can also band together and file neighborhood conservation protests to protect properties none of them own: When you and the owners of at least 20 percent of the area within 200 feet of a property slated for rezoning file protests, the Austin City Council cannot allow the subdivision and density increases on that property without supermajority support (nine of 11 votes).
No. The court’s ruling protects only those property owners for past protests. You must file a new, timely, and valid neighborhood conservation protest for these new proposed changes. In the absence of a valid protest, the city council can subdivide housing lots and drastically increase neighborhood density with the vote of a council simple majority (six of 11 votes).
Yes. In March 2020, Travis County District Judge Jan Soifer upheld the right to file a rezoning protest online, and electronic filings like the one made possible on this website were not contested by the City of Austin. According to Section 322.007 of the Texas Business and Commerce Act, “[i]f a law requires a record to be in writing, an electronic record satisfies the law” and “[i]f a law requires a signature, an electronic signature satisfies the law.” We also will file a hard copy with the city before it takes final action. Click here if you prefer to file your rezoning protest by mail.
Yes. Simply download and print a Standard Neighborhood Conservation Protest Form (available in both PDF and Microsoft Word), fill it out, sign it, and then mail it to the City of Austin, Planning and Zoning, PO Box 1088, Austin, TX 78767 as soon as possible. Your property address and signature are required.
Not necessarily. If an individual who owns 20 percent or more of a property files a neighborhood conservation protest, that protest should be considered valid for the entire property. Ownership is determined by the Travis County County Clerk’s property records.
Yes, you may use this website to file neighborhood conservation protests for each property you own. After you have filed your first protest, simply refresh the screen and repeat the process for additional properties. If you prefer to file by mail, simply download and print multiple copies of our Standard Neighborhood Conservation Protest Form (available in both PDF and Microsoft Word), fill them out, and then mail them to the City of Austin, Planning and Zoning, PO Box 1088, Austin, TX 78767 as soon as possible. Your property addresses and signature are required.
Yes. You and/or your neighbors may protest the changes proposed for any property being rezoned within 200 feet of each person’s property. Begin by downloading and printing a Multi-Party Neighborhood Conservation Protest Form (available in both PDF and Microsoft Word). Fill in the requested information, and then have as many neighbors as possible fill out the same form and sign it. Property owners who work together in this fashion are more likely to obtain the 20 percent needed to constitute a valid petition. After you are finished collecting signatures, mail the form to the City of Austin, Planning and Zoning, PO Box 1088, Austin, TX 78767 as soon as possible. Property addresses and signatures are required.