An updated development agreement is in place for Hutto's Co-Op District, a 35-acre mixed-use development on Hwy. 79 just west of downtown.

The agreement—which City Council approved May 4—introduces several new requirements and adjustments to requirements established in previous agreements.

One requirement added in the new agreement is developer MA Partners must construct several parking garages in the Co-Op.

The first of those parking garages will be associated with the Jack Allen's Kitchen location announced in November. It is expected to deliver within 15 to 18 months alongside the restaurant.

City Manager James Earp said some of the parking garages will be “urban wrap” designs, meaning offices or apartments will wrap around and conceal the garage.

Another facet of the new agreement is MA Partners will open the Co-Op's amphitheater, splash pad and green space by Memorial Day weekend.

Earp said the city is considering moving the annual Sunset Block Party Bash on May 26 from Fritz Park to the Co-Op because of the change.

"We're looking at combining all of those activities into a single kind of kickoff—a big party downtown on the town green for the public to celebrate the Co-Op," Earp said.

The new agreement also imposes greater penalties should MA Partners fail to meet timelines or other development requirements.

The financial penalty for short deliverables increased to $2 per missing square foot, up from $0.25, and MA Partners will transfer land ownership back to the city should it fail to construct parking garages in time.

The new agreement has been in the works since November. MA Partners signed it prior to council's May 4 vote.

“This has been a massive effort that has taken a number of people to achieve,” Earp said. “Certainly, this is what I consider a successful negotiation.”