NWACA Blog

  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #17 – What to Do When the Wildfire Comes

    Published on: February 23, 2015

    First, you should have already done all of the fire-damage prevention to your home talked about in the previous tips. Those “tips” helped you harden your home against urban wildfires and their deadly embers, by working on the landscape and vegetation-intense...

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  • Safety Tip: Secure Your Garage Door

    Published on: February 18, 2015

    A very vulnerable part of a home is the garage door. Those with glass panels or windows can show the thief just what we have; those with a common type of garage door opener can be compromised by a thief...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #16 – Be Sure Your Home Is Not a Source of Fire

    Published on: January 27, 2015

      NWACA has been diligent over the past few years in getting the Austin Fire Department, the Texas Forest Service, the City of Austin, Travis County and others to educate all of us in the dangers of urban wildfire. We’re...

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  • Front Yard Fridays – Try it!

    Published on: December 23, 2014

    Front Yard Fridays - Try it! NWACA neighbors on Glen Ridge Drive have started a fun way to meet the neighbors. They call it "Front Yard Fridays." NWACA Board member Shannon Meroney created the concept and started it with a...

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  • Map of APD Patrol Boundaries

    Published on: December 18, 2014

    On December 17, 2014, the APD changed the boundaries of its patrol areas, and now all of NWACA is covered in the Baker area of Region 1. Attached is a map of the new APD sectors, so that you see...

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  • Doss Murchison Traffic Study Update – November 7, 2014

    Published on: December 5, 2014

    Attached is a November 7, 2014 report and findings from a Traffic Study conducted by the City Transportation and Public Works Departments. These are the key observations: "The street network cannot accommodate the existing traffic demand during peak school periods...

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  • Austin Oaks PUD – Official Update – Nov. 24, 2014

    Published on: November 24, 2014

    NWACA wishes to assure you that we continue to proceed exactly as communicated to our community regarding this matter: To date, we have: Conducted a Community Forum on the Austin Oaks (AO) PUD. Conducted a survey to get the community's...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #15: Fire Embers and Snowflakes

    Published on: October 27, 2014

    It is generally acknowledged by firefighters and fire experts that embers from a wild fire are more dangerous to homes and structures than the actual flames from the wildfire. Why is this? Well, the flight characteristics of fire embers are...

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  • Changes to City of Austin Roles Regarding Deer

    Published on: October 21, 2014

    The City of Austin has now changed some of the roles responsible for matters relating to deer in our neighborhoods, responding to recommendations of the Deer Working Group. Effective 10/1/13, enforcement of the Intentional Feeding of Deer Ordinance (Chapter 10-8)...

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  • Results of 2014 Survey of Issues

    Published on: September 29, 2014

    In late August and early September, 2014, NWACA conducted a survey of all households in the NWACA boundaries, gathering opinions about the proposed Austin Oaks PUD and asking for ratings on topics of interest for NWACA’s work in the coming...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #14 – Be Prepared for a Local Wildfire

    Published on: September 29, 2014

      About 2000 NWACA homes within a half mile of Stillhouse Hollow Preserve received a postcard from the Wildfire Division of the Austin Fire Department (AFD) last week, with this message on one side of the card. Our homes are...

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  • NWACA Board Vote on Austin Oaks PUD

    Published on: September 19, 2014

    The NWACA Board has voted unanimously to oppose the PUD Re-zoning Application for Austin Oaks based on the results of the NWACA residents’ survey, and the comments received at the NWACA Community Meeting on the Austin Oaks PUD Application.  After thoughtful...

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  • Notes from 8-19-14 Community Meeting on Austin Oaks PUD

    Published on: August 25, 2014

    More than 300 people attended the Community Meeting about the Austin Oaks PUD on Tuesday, August 19, and most were very actively engaged. Neighbors provided a clear message to the City staff and the developer’s staff that those present oppose...

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  • Zoning Case – 4920 Spicewood Springs Road

    Published on: August 5, 2014

    Posted June 13, 2014, updated August 5, 2014 Updated fact sheet added on August 5. In the attached fact sheet we describe a re-zoning request that is working its way through the City of Austin process. The fact sheet tells...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #13: Learn More and Become an Assessor

    Published on: July 28, 2014

    What do you know about urban wildfires? Bastrop - The Pinnacle Fire - Steiner Ranch – California - Colorado - Washington State - all have been in the news, all cases of wildfire that burned a lot of vegetation, destroyed...

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  • More Bike Lanes Coming – Be Careful with Right Turns

    Published on: June 29, 2014

    There have been questions raised about how to navigate right turns when the street has a bike lane, and perhaps a parking lane as well. A check with the City of Austin revealed the following information. Texas Transportation Code Sec....

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  • Zoning Updates

    Published on: June 13, 2014

    In our June newsletter, we described a helipad permit that was under discussion. That permit request has been withdrawn, thanks to the activity of several neighborhood associations in the area; thank you for your comments and input about that.  Work...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #12: Minimize Plant Flammability

    Published on: May 28, 2014

      An 8-page pamphlet from the Texas Forest Service reminds us that “Fire-resistant does not mean fire-proof. Homeowners should maintain a healthy landscape with proper cleaning, pruning and watering. Put the right plant in the right place.” “Firewise Landscaping in...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #11: Don’t Let Yard Debris Accumulate

    Published on: April 30, 2014

    We all now know that fire embers are a secondary starter of fires and they can fly as much as a mile from a wildfire source…starting new fires. Piles of dry tree limbs and other trimmings, brush, lawn debris, leaves,...

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  • What to Do if You See Pruning February through June

    Published on: April 29, 2014

    Have you seen a contractor's workers pruning a live oak or a red oak between February and June? Professionals should know better, but unscrupulous “tree trimmers” apparently don't know or don't care. Do you have a new neighbor who might...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #10: Mulch Practices

    Published on: April 4, 2014

      Originally, mulch was a material consisting of leaves, bark or compost spread around and over a plant to enrich or insulate the soil. Today, most mulches are commercially produced wood chips, bark and other components. The vast majority of...

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  • Neighborhood Watch Support Now Available

    Published on: March 28, 2014

    NWACA is putting a strong focus on building up Neighborhood Watch groups, and you're invited to get involved. There is a library of materials about Neighborhood Watch on this page, under the header of Crime and Safety Committee Work. See...

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  • Checking the Fire Danger Level

    Published on: March 10, 2014

      Texas A&M provides access to a daily fire danger map for the State of Texas, as well as related maps on fuel dryness and several moisture levels. The Texas Fire Danger(TFD) map is produced by the National Fire Danger...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #9 – Spring Cleaning in the Landscape

    Published on: February 28, 2014

      March is right around the corner and this is generally the time when homeowners return to their yards and gardens to get ready for the growing season. While you are cleaning away leaves and debris and trimming plants, it’s...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #8 – Register for Notifications

    Published on: February 28, 2014

    This month’s tip is a bit more generic than hardening a home; it applies to any citizen who wants to be notified of a regional emergency situation due to weather, wildfire, or other incident important to a broad population. The...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #7 – Wooden Fence Strategies

    Published on: February 28, 2014

      A rather vulnerable element for a home for wildfires is a wooden fence. From time to time, wood fences have been called “wicks” because grass fires can attack the bottom of a wooden fence and then follow it around...

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  • Reporting Coyote Sightings

    Published on: February 10, 2014

    If you observe coyotes or have an encounter with a coyote in our neighborhood, please call 3 - 1 - 1 and report it. The operator will ask several questions and then forward the information to Animal Control, who will...

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  • NWACA Parks

    Published on: December 2, 2013

    Attached is an October, 2013 article about the 7 parks and greenbelts in the NWACA area, along with photos and links for more information. NWACA Parks Oct 2013.pdf...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #6 – Ember-Proofing Turbine Vents

    Published on: November 29, 2013

    There is a wide assortment of rotary turbine roof exhaust vents. The majority are made of metal, generally either sheet metal or aluminum with typically a 12” or 14” louvered turbine that is either wind-driven or power-driven. Usually, a circular...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #5 – Screen the Ridge Vents

    Published on: November 14, 2013

      Roof and attic spaces are vented by a variety of different types of vents. The more common ones are soffit vents installed in the eave soffits (usually horizontally installed under eaves); end-gable vents (usually vertically installed in the vertical...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #4: Get a Home Risk Assessment

    Published on: September 29, 2013

      With a projected drought of more than 20 years, it’s not really a matter of if, but when, a wildfire event will happen in NWACA. Homeowners in the Western United States, in Steiner Ranch, Bastrop, and other Central Texas...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #3: Barbecue with Caution

    Published on: August 30, 2013

    Barbecuing baby-back ribs, brisket, chicken, and other fare in the backyard over a weekend during the summer is normally considered a fine Texas tradition! And more often than not, we probably store our prized barbecue pit/mobile kitchen on our deck…yep,...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #2: Firewise Landscaping

    Published on: August 30, 2013

      Firewise Communities require landscaping around homes to be lean, clean and green. The primary focus on landscaping is in the Home Ignition Zone, of which there are three primary zones: Zone 1 – the home and its immediate surroundings,...

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  • 2013 Fourth of July Parade History

    Published on: July 12, 2013

      When did Northwest Hills start putting on a parade and why is it so important to the community? This is our 41st Annual Parade - reportedly the longest running in Austin. Everyone in Northwest Hills agrees that July 4th...

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  • Speed Studies – 2011

    Published on: July 5, 2013

      During 2011, the Transportation Committee worked with the Austin Police Department and the Austin Transportation Department to conduct volume and speed studies on busy streets in NWACA. Below is data from those studies. Street Hart Lane Lakewood Lemonwood North...

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  • Wildfire Prevention Tip #1: Hardening Existing Homes

    Published on: July 4, 2013

    To harden your home against embers and reduce wildfire fuel stores: Install screens of 1/8" or smaller opening sizes over attic vents, soffit vents, and other openings into the home If you have wooden vents, spray them with fire retardant...

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  • Help our Neighborhood as a “Fireplug!”

    Published on: June 18, 2013

    The NWACA Wildfire Prevention Committee is organizing small portions of the NWACA neighborhood into street-level segments to focus on making homes in these areas fire adapted, minimizing their risk in a time of wildfire. In coordination with the Austin Fire...

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  • Bees Need to be Removed?

    Published on: May 28, 2013

    If you have honeybees making a nest in a tree or somewhere else in your yard, where they might pose a problem for your family, you can have them removed by an organization which will relocate them to a place...

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  • Plant List and Presentations Available

    Published on: April 29, 2013

    On Saturday, April 27, we had a presentation on deer-resistant and drought-resistant gardening, followed by a tour of neighborhood yards with landscaping that illustrated many of the examples discussed. For those who weren't able to attend, you can see two...

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  • Newly-Designed TAP Program Signs Available March 2013

    Published on: March 18, 2013

    The new Traffic Awareness Program (TAP Your Brakes) sign is designed in red and black to stand out prominently with a simple message to drivers - PLEASE SLOW DOWN. Images of children playing and wildlife also help caution drivers to...

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  • Deer-resistant Plants

    Published on: January 10, 2013

    An often-asked question: what can we plant that the deer won’t eat? As the author of the article cited below says, if they’re hungry enough, they’ll eat your shoelaces if you don’t move fast enough! In this posting, we get...

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  • MoPac Express Lanes

    Published on: March 30, 2012

      The MoPac Improvement Project held an Open House on March 6 at the Dell Jewish Community Campus. The attached brochure describes the plan for Express Lanes on MoPac from Parmer Lane to Cesar Chavez. To prevent congestion and improve...

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  • Traffic Calming Program Starts in January 2012

    Published on: December 28, 2011

    The City of Austin Transportation is launching a new traffic calming program in January! This is a great opportunity to request speed mitigation devices for some of the residential streets within our boundaries that have speeding and safety problems. Applications...

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  • Pruning Season is November through January

    Published on: November 18, 2011

    The ideal season to prune Oaks is November through January. If this is the year to prune, have you scheduled the pruning some time before February 1? NWACA recommends employing only certified arborists and working with them to develop and...

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  • Illegal Hunting or Game Thievery

    Published on: November 4, 2011

    If you observe violations of state game laws, such as illegal bow-hunting, or game thievery, please contact Texas Parks and Wildlife Law Enforcement at 512-389-4848....

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  • Bull Creek District Park Remains an On-Leash Park for Dogs

    Published on: February 21, 2011

    Feb. 17, 2001 - News Release from Austin Parks and Recreation The Austin Parks and Recreation Department Director Sara Hensley, after a critical and careful analysis of the recent completed review of fecal contamination monitoring at the Bull Creek District...

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  • Speed Studies – 2010

    Published on: December 31, 2010

      The Austin Police Department completed a Stealth Box Study of traffic on Greystone Drive (4200 block between Mesa and West Rim) on December 2-3, 2010. The speed limit is 30 mph, but 46% of drivers were speeding over 30...

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  • Deer Information Session – September 8, 2010

    Published on: September 8, 2010

    About 25 people gathered on September 8, 2010 for a forum on living with the deer in Austin, hosted by the City of Austin (COA) Health Department, Rodent and Vector Control Program.  The session included a brief presentation by Kelly...

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  • Austin Heritage Tree Ordinance Now in Effect

    Published on: February 10, 2010

    On February 4, 2010 the Austin City Council passed a Heritage Tree Ordinance. This ordinance amends the sections of the city code that protect trees, and it adds a new division for heritage trees. In the category of heritage trees,...

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  • Reporting Intentional Deer Feeding

    Published on: January 26, 2010

    In February 2009, the City of Austin passed an ordinance making it illegal to intentionally feed deer within the City limits. If you see someone breaking the law, contact contact 3-1-1. Make sure to have the address of the offender...

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  • Dealing with Dead Deer or Other Dead Animals

    Published on: January 26, 2010

    If you find a dead deer or other dead animal on a city street or other city property, contact 3-1-1 to report it to Austin Resource Recovery (formerly Solid Waste Services). Please note that the dead animal must be placed...

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  • Looking for New Parks

    Published on: January 22, 2010

    The Parks Committee watches for where we need new pocket parks, playgrounds, and/or park improvements. If you have suggestions or input, please let us know....

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  • Yes, there is still a problem!

    Published on: January 20, 2010

    Oak wilt has been worked on for years throughout the NWACA neighborhood. Unfortunately, outbreaks continue to happen annually. Over $500,000 has already been spent on trenching projects in our neighborhood, but we must work vigilantly to protect our treasured oaks....

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  • Prune Infrequently

    Published on: January 20, 2010

    Healthy Oak trees require only infrequent pruning every 5-10 years. Obviously, pruning should target dead limbs, limbs growing into buildings or utility lines, self-inflicted wounds (such as limbs rubbing together) and poor structural pattern growth. However, cosmetic pruning to strip...

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  • Do Not Prune February Through June

    Published on: January 20, 2010

    Be very careful with your trees during the first half of the year. This is the time that carrier beetles are at their peak, so do not prune oak trees from the start of February through the end of June....

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  • Feeding of Deer Prohibited in City of Austin

    Published on: January 12, 2010

    Here is the text of the City of Austin ordinance regarding the feeding of deer: ARTICLE 1. GENERAL PROVISIONS. § 10-8-1 DEFINITION. In this chapter FOOD means corn, fruit, oats, hay, nuts, wheat, alfalfa, salt blocks, grain, vegetables, and commercially...

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