Eighth Street over­haul to in­volve road clo­sures


A project to re­work West Eighth Street down­town, re­duc­ing it from four lanes to two, will close lanes be­tween Congress Av­enue and Colorado Street over the next six months.

Work on that same street far­ther to the west, mean­while will soon in­clude con­struc­tion of a round­about at the Rio Grande Street in­ter­sec­tion.

Lanes on the north side of Eighth in the Colorado-to-Congress stretch will close be­gin­ning Satur­day and re­main blocked for about the next three months, the city says. Af­ter that, a sim­i­lar clo­sure will oc­cur on the south side of the street, again last­ing about three months. The city will keep two lanes of traf­fic open on West Eighth through­out the work.

The work in­cludes re­plac­ing un­der­ground util­i­ties, re­con­struct­ing the street and mak­ing side­walk and streetscape im­prove­ments, in­clud­ing elim­i­nat­ing a lane on each side by wi­den­ing the side­walks.

The Austin An­i­mal Cen­ter and the Austin Hu­mane So­ci­ety are of­fer­ing their “Home for the Hol­i­days” adop­tion pro­gram un­til Jan. 7.

As a part of the pro­gram, adop­tion fees are $20 at both shel­ters, with fees waived for an­i­mals over 5 years old. The shel­ters are also of­fer­ing a two-for-one adop­tion spe­cial for cats and kit­tens.

The stan­dard adop­tion ap­pli­ca­tion process ap­plies at both shel­ters, and adop­tions in­clude spay/neuter surgery, vac­ci­na­tions, a mi­crochip, and a col­lar and tags, an an­nounce­ment said.

“All of the shel­ters and res­cue or­ga­ni­za­tions in our area are full right now,” said Abi­gail Smith, chief an­i­mal ser­vices of­fi­cer at the Austin An­i­mal Cen­ter. “We have far too many won­der­ful pets that are home­less.”

The Austin An­i­mal Cen­ter, www.Austi­nAn­i­mal­Cen­ter.org, is at 7201 Le­van­der Loop, and the Austin Hu­mane So­ci­ety, www.Austin­Hu­mane­So­ci­ety. org, is at 124 W. An­der­son Lane.

The Austin school district has re­ceived a $1 mil­lion com­mit­ment from sev­eral donors to ex­pand the district’s Emo­tional Learn­ing Pro­gram, which aims to teach stu­dents con­cepts such as self-aware­ness, so­cial aware­ness and re­spon­si­ble de­ci­sion-mak­ing.

The match­ing grant from Jeanne and Michael Klein, Betsy and Hughes Abell with the Buena Vista Foun­da­tion, and Carmel and Thomas Bor­ders with the Ta­pes­try Foun­da­tion will help cre­ate the pro­gram in all district schools over the next three years.

The grant will fund in­struc­tional coach­ing, par­ent and clas­si­fied per­son­nel train­ing, cur­ricu­lum ma­te­ri­als, cam­pus fa­cil­i­ta­tor stipends and pro­fes­sional devel­op­ment.

Em­ploy­ment will be avail­able this sum­mer for teens ages 14 to 17 as a part of a joint en­deavor of the city of Austin and the Travis County Health & Hu­man Ser­vices De­part­ment.

The the Work-Based Learn­ing/Sum­mer Youth Em­ploy­ment Pro­gram aims to pro­vide teens with a chance to de­velop work­place skills. Teens will work with the city, Travis County, non­profit groups and pri­vate busi­nesses.

To be el­i­gi­ble, teens must re­side in the city or Travis County and at­tend school in the area. Pre­req­ui­sites in­clude train­ing in com­plet­ing a job ap­pli­ca­tion and work­place ex­pec­ta­tions. Par­ents can reg­is­ter teens be­gin­ning Jan. 2 by call­ing 854-4590.

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