Austin Zoning and Platting Commission OKs The Training Kitchen to grow affordable, fresh food for families

Austin's Zoning and Platting Commission granted The Training Kitchen a conditional-use permit for a parcel of land for a commercial Kitchen. (Trent Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)
Austin's Zoning and Platting Commission granted The Training Kitchen a conditional-use permit for a parcel of land for a commercial Kitchen. (Trent Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)

Austin's Zoning and Platting Commission granted The Training Kitchen a conditional-use permit for a parcel of land for a commercial Kitchen. (Trent Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)

The city of Austin Zoning and Platting Commission approved a request Nov. 16 from South Austin nonprofit The Training Kitchen to grow food to sell to low-income families.

The Training Kitchen, located at 1901 Matthews Lane, Austin, obtained a conditional-use permit from the commission to use 1,130 square feet of a 1,876-square-foot parcel for a commercial kitchen, according to a letter written to the commission from nonprofit owners Amanda Longtain and Matthew Shepherd. TTK’s mission is to create an alternative learning community to provide informal education classes and outside learning opportunities for adults as well as growing fresh food to provide free meals to low-income families, according to the letter. Longtain and Shepherd hope to provide economic opportunities to an area of the city experiencing increasing rates of poverty, according to the letter.


“With approval of the conditional-use [permit], food grown on the site can be prepared in a new commercial kitchen, allowing TTK to better respond to the immediate needs of our community using food preparation as a training opportunity and the sales of the affordable foods as revenue,” Longtain and Shepherd wrote in the letter. “Whether adults are struggling with joblessness, food insecurity or a diminished sense of self, TTK will help bridge the gap between them and economic opportunity."

Several residents and organizations wrote letters of support for the organization's mission, such as South Austin nonprofit El Buen Samaritano; Adult Care of Austin; Mariposa Family Learning Center; and Suzi Mitchell, director of the career and technical education department with Hays CISD.
By Trent Thompson

Reporter, Austin Metro

Trent joined Community Impact Newspaper as an intern in May 2021 after graduating with a degree in journalism from the University of Texas, Austin in December 2020. In July 2021, he was promoted to Austin Metro reporter. He covers several news beats from education and government to dining, transportation, nonprofits, and healthcare. However, his primary beat is business and development. Before working at CI, Trent wrote for The Daily Texan, UT's daily student newspaper, and worked on many projects of his own for his undergraduate program. In his free time Trent writes poetry, spends time with loved ones, and watches Star Wars for the hundredth time, including other new movies.



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