Austin American-Statesman - - LOCALBRIEFING - Com­piled from staff re­ports

Taxi driv­ers at Austin-Bergstrom In­ter­na­tional Air­port might fi­nally get the air-con­di­tioned wait­ing area they’ve re­quested for years.

An agenda item the City Coun­cil will con­sider at its meet­ing to­day calls for pay­ing Bud­get Rent a Car $312,500 for a ser­vice cen­ter Bud­get built on 4.5 acres of air­port land. Bud­get would con­tinue to lease 1.5 of the 4.5 acres for rental car park­ing, air­port spokesman Jim Hal­brook said.

Over the next 15 months, the city would con­vert a build­ing on the Bud­get site into a cli­mate-con­trolled wait­ing area for cab driv­ers, who have long com­plained about hav­ing to waste gaso­line by wait­ing in their air-con­di­tioned taxis on hot days. The city would also move its ground trans­porta­tion stag­ing area — where limos, cabs and other ve­hi­cles con­gre­gate be­fore pro­ceed­ing to the air­port ter­mi­nal — to the ser­vice cen­ter.

The ex­ist­ing ve­hi­cle stag­ing area would be turned into a wait­ing area for res­i­dents pick­ing up friends and fam­ily at the air­port or for com­mer­cial re­tail devel­op­ment, ac­cord­ing to a writ­ten sum­mary of the item.

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