Developers hope to transform a wooded area just east of I-35 into a low-income apartment complex but face pushback from some neighbors.

“The reality in Austin, Texas today is that the majority of renters cannot afford this next step to home ownership, which then creates the demand for three- and four-bedroom units,” said Suzanne Schwertner, director of development at the Housing Authority of the city of Austin, at an Aug. 17 Austin Zoning and Platting Commission meeting.

Schwertner said 156 of the Fox Hollow development’s proposed 203 affordable apartments at 2117 Brandt Road, Austin, would be two-, three- and four-bedroom units. Neighbors of the proposed development argued the location would put the building’s residents at risk due to a history of flooding in the area, said Jon Iken, Slaughter Creek Homeowners Association vice president. Iken also pointed to road safety, adding the nearest bus stop is along a road with no shoulder or sidewalks.

J Segura, an engineer working with LDG Development, said residents of the neighborhood had valid concerns but that many details, including mitigation for building on the flood plain, would be addressed at the development permit stage if City Council first approved the developers’ request to rezone the area. Segura also said builders would need to construct sidewalks per the city code but added that sidewalks would not run along the front of the development, though future development could affect sidewalk plans.