Area park improvements, new Belterra Village tenant and more for Southwest Austinites to know this week, Oct. 23-27

Hat Creek Burger Company is one of the latest tenants to announce its plans to join Belterra Village.

Hat Creek Burger Company is one of the latest tenants to announce its plans to join Belterra Village.

Two area parks are slated to see improvements funded by Council Member Ellen Troxclair's personal budget. Also, a beloved burger restaurant is the latest addition to the list of tenants opening in Belterra Village next year. Here's a few more things to keep in mind this week.

Bourbon distillery joins The Yard
Bourbon distillery Still Austin Whiskey Company opened in the Yard on St. Elmo Road in late September. The business offers grain-to-glass Texas whiskey using locally sourced ingredients. The tasting room, which features a dog-friendly patio, is open Thursday through Sunday.

Austin, Dallas, Houston submit proposals for Amazon's second headquarters
Oct. 19 marked the deadline for metropolitan statistical areas, or MSAs, to submit proposals for Amazon's second headquarters. The Seattle-based company is looking to make a $5 billion capital investment to create 50,000 jobs at a new facility with 8.1 million square feet of office space. Austin, Dallas and Houston threw their hats in the ring. For a compilation of Community Impact Newspaper's Amazon HQ2-related coverage, follow this link.

Southeast Travis County residents sue Central Health over alleged misuse of public funds
Three Southeast Travis County residents filed a lawsuit against Central Health on Wednesday, Oct. 18, claiming misuse of public funds that should be used to provide health care to the poor.

According to a recent press release, the plaintiffs—Rebecca Birch, and Franklin and Esther Govea—are seeking a declaratory judgment in Travis County State District Court that Central Health must spend its funds exclusively on health care for the low-income individuals. They also seek to prevent Central Health from spending funds on economic development, medical education, nonhealth care activities or health care for residents who are not poor.

A representative from Central Health responded to these complaints by stating Central Health is in the planning process of increasing clinical presence in the area. This includes communicating with residents and analyzing data regarding patient population needs. The organization will discuss possible solutions at the board of managers meeting Oct. 25.

Hurricane Harvey sparks renewed push for underground water storage projects
In Hurricane Harvey’s wake, state Rep. Lyle Larson and other lawmakers are re-upping calls for state support of “aquifer storage and recovery” projects in which water is pumped into underground reservoirs and stored for future use. Larson authored several related bills earlier this year — most of them passed but were later vetoed by Gov. Greg Abbott — that would have earmarked state funding for such projects and directed the state’s water planning agency to study the best places to put them.

Hat Creek Burger Company to join Belterra Village next year
Family-friendly burger restaurant Hat Creek Burger Company will open  at Hwy. 290 and Nutty Brown Road in January 2018. The Belterra Village location will be the company's ninth eatery in the Austin area.

Southwest Austin parks to receive $100,000 from Council Member Ellen Troxclair
Austin City Council Member Ellen Troxclair is continuing her efforts to improve parks in Southwest Austin by allocating $100,000 from her personal office budget toward new equipment.

The contribution will be split between replacing playground equipment in Dick Nichols District Park with new updated Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant equipment, as well as adding a shade structure over the playscape in the Latta Tyhurst Neighborhood Park in Villages at Western Oaks. The projects are slated for completion by the end of fiscal year 2017-18.

By Olivia Lueckemeyer
Olivia Lueckemeyer graduated in 2013 from Loyola University New Orleans with a degree in journalism. She joined Community Impact Newspaper in October 2016 as reporter for the Southwest Austin edition before her promotion to editor in March 2017. In July 2018 she returned home to the Dallas area and became editor of the Richardson edition.