It’s Awesome to be a Kid Downtown
Children living in downtown Austin attend Austin Independent School District schools, including Mathews Elementary, O. Henry Middle School and Austin High. All three schools have received high rankings by GreatSchools.com.
Downtown kids and adults alike have plenty of outdoor options available. A short bike ride away is Austin’s beloved Zilker Park, where residents can explore a nature center and botanical garden, and can enjoy a swim in the legendary Barton Springs pool, which is fed by natural springs and maintains a consistent year-round temperature of 68 degrees. Skate and BMX parks are also nearby, and numerous compact green spaces dot the downtown grid.
“The Shoal Creek greenbelt is sort of a little hidden gem in downtown Austin,” says Mitchell McGovern, who’s lived downtown for 4 years. “I can hang out there with my dog and not even know I’m in the city. I see turtles and fish and birds, a great slice of nature right in the city center.”
Workout, Dinner, Live Music and Good Friends — All Within an Easy Walk
A woman takes the elevator outside her office on one of the top floors of a downtown high rise to meet her husband, who works in another downtown building, for their lunch date. The two high-tech executives plan to meet at Iron Works BBQ for a quick bite, followed by a walk in the fresh air and sunshine. Then it’s back to work for the afternoon. They each hope the rest of the day will fly by, as the pair has plans tonight with some friends who live in their downtown condo.
The group plans to meet in the lobby of the hotel next door and then head out on foot to The Wine Dive for some pre-dinner cocktails and American tapas, then over to Sullivan’s for a critically acclaimed steakhouse meal, and finally, Lucky Lounge for some live music and a nightcap.
“You end up with multiple layers of community,” says Pamela Power. “You have your community within your particular building, and then you have the whole downtown community.”
“I can’t walk three blocks without running into someone I know,” adds McGovern, “whether it’s a cashier at Whole Foods or someone from my building. There’s an incredible sense of community living in downtown Austin.”
Lively, Convivial Lifestyle for Sophisticated Urbanites
Austinites who live downtown love the vitality and excitement that the area exudes. Neighbors enjoy the camaraderie they find with each other. Potlucks and other gatherings held within buildings are complemented by area-wide gatherings held at downtown bars and restaurants. Downtown residents also appreciate the convenience of their neighborhood. They find it handy to be able to walk to work, to the dry cleaner’s, or to pick up a new computer cable on the spur of the moment.
“I can accomplish many necessities without even leaving my building,” says Marshall Jones, who’s lived downtown with his wife for more than 8 years. Four-year urbanite McGovern adds, “I may drive my car once a month.”
Neighbors of all ages also appreciate the area’s greenbelts, hike-and-bike trails and the parks that let them exercise and enjoy the outdoors. “I have a 1.7-acre park across the street that I don’t have to mow,” says Jones. “Living downtown is definitely an fantastic lifestyle.”