Wednesday, June 30, 2021

FotoATX 2021 Returns for Summer Reprise



In-Person & Online Exhibits and a Panel Discussion
Kick off photography month a little early with exhibits at Austin Parks and Recreation museums and cultural centers as well as online. FotoATX is Austin's annual love letter to photography. This annual event presents some top local photographers as well as historic photos representing the city's broad diversity. Admission to all exhibits is free and open to the public.
 
OLD BAKERY AND EMPORIUM
1006 Congress Ave.
July 2 – August 31, 2021
 
Lesley Bradstreet
Desert Rhythms

Desert Rhythms is a body of work that celebrates the vastness of White Sands National Park in New Mexico.
 
Michael Penn Smith
Alley Shots

Michael Penn Smith's work captures the back alleys and abandoned lots that have been overgrown and forgotten.

ST. JOHN BRANCH of the LIBRARY
7500 Blessing Ave.
August 2 – October 30, 2021
 
Mery Godigna Collet
Wandering Skin

"In a conceptual way, these works are built around themes like regeneration, memories, emotions, belonging and feelings... the eventual need of leaving a recognizable context in order to survive." Mery Godigna Collet uses oak trees as a metaphor to address these feelings and the relationship with women.
 
Luis R Gutiérrez
Marfa's Light

The title is a play on words; the rarely if ever-seen phenomenon in Texas known as the Marfa Lights versus what is not so elusive and always evident, Marfa's Light. Marfa's Light consists of four 12"x 36" photographs on aluminum.

OAKWOOD CEMETERY CHAPEL
Online Exhibits
 
To Elevate

To Elevate speaks to the legacy of Huston-Tilloston University, an historically Black College/University (HBCU) and includes historic photos from digital collections including the Downs-Jones Library and Archive at Huston-Tillotson University. View at AustinTexas.gov/ToElevate.
 
To Serve

To Serve recognizes military veterans buried in all five Austin cemeteries, from the war of 1812 to current conflicts, including historic photos from digital collections such as the George Washington Carver Museum, Cultural and Genealogy Center. View at AustinTexas.gov/ToServe.
 
DOUGHERTY ARTS CENTER
1100 Barton Springs Rd.
June 28 – August 28, 2021
 
Sarah Luna
luminous mo:ments

Luna's background in spiritual psychology has guided her artistic process of sculpture and photography, and her use of color, energy, and form to create a visual poem.
 
Michelle Gardella
River Story

Gardella has devoted twelve years to photographing River Story, a series exploring the reunification of women with water, and what it means to belong.
 
EMMA S. BARRIENTOS MEXICAN-AMERICAN CULTURAL CENTER (MACC)
600 River St.
August 6 – November 6, 2021
 
Recuerdos – Celebrating 14 years of Cultura at the MACC!

Recuerdos is a collection of photos taken by staff of events and commemorating 14 years of the MACC's existence. This selection of work features images from signature events, programs, and the Latino Artist Access Program. 

ASIAN AMERICAN RESOURCE CENTER (AARC)
8401 Cameron Rd.
August 30, 2021 – Jan 30, 2022
 
Amar Gupta
Out of Service

See how Austin's service industry workers were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic through the lens of photographer Amar Gupta.
 
Peter Shen
Doors

Enter the diverse world of architectural thresholds through Peter Shen's photographs of doors, which encompass designs from all around the world. 
 
FOTOATX
Discussion Panel via Zoom
August 17 at 6 PM REGISTER HERE

FotoAPA (Asian Pacific Austenite): Five Texas Photographers in Conversation

Join AARC's lineup of contemporary Asian American photographers discussing the art of picture making in Texas. Featuring artists: Amar Gupta, Ben Aqua, Lizzie Chen, Rama Tiru and Sherwin Rivera Tibayan.

For more information, visit AustinTexas.gov/Page/FotoATX.






City of Austin Announces Re-entry Grants to Support People Who Have Been Incarcerated



Applications Accepted through July 23

The City of Austin's Equity Office is accepting applications from the community for Re-entry Services Grant funding to improve opportunities and resources for people who were formerly incarcerated.

Systemic barriers prevent individuals with a criminal record from accessing stable housing, jobs, transportation, and health care. The grant program seeks to improve outcomes for individuals re-entering society through a more human-centered re-entry process.

A total of $400,000 will be distributed through two programs:
  • Hub Funding - One award will be made for $200,000 to serve as a "hub" or one-stop-shop where the re-entry community can receive services necessary to assist them in reaching stability. The goal of this award is to fund an organization to provide wrap-around, holistic services to individuals who are working to achieve stability after incarceration.
  • Spoke Funding – Awards of up to $50,000 will be disbursed for entities that can provide component services in new and innovative ways.  Examples include but are not limited to housing, mental and physical care, financial assistance, job and skills training and food access.
Applicants are encouraged to apply online.  Awards will be announced by the end of September.

"The obstacles that prevent someone from returning from incarceration and achieving stability are systemic in nature," said Chief Equity Officer Brion Oaks. "What we seek to accomplish through these grants is to examine who is most impacted by barriers and begin to address them on both an individual and systemic level."  

Oaks added that to improve outcomes, interventions cannot focus solely on solving the "housing" or the "health" or the "economic" impacts on people who have a criminal record but work holistically to serve individuals and their specific needs.

To help understand the needs and craft the scope of work of the grants, the Equity Office partnered with local organizations grounded in Austin's re-entry community to host focus groups and engage with people who were formerly incarcerated. Findings revealed that although several organizations are doing positive work, more resources and creative approaches are needed.

"In funding organizations grounded in the expertise and experience of those most impacted, the City hopes to learn what we need to change within our own programs and services. In making these changes, we seek to go from just funding services, to partnering in transforming outcomes for individuals," Oaks said.

City of Austin Equity Office
The City of Austin Equity Office works to achieve a vision of Austin in which race, orientation, or gender do not predict a person's outcomes. Our work centers on normalizing conversations around race and systemic inequity, organizing among City staff and community members to advance equity, and operationalizing the principles of equity across all the City's programs and services.

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Austin Public Health and Travis County Partner with Community Organizations for COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics (06/29-07/02)



Austin Public Health (APH) and Travis County will be partnering with local community organizations to provide pop-up COVID-19 vaccination clinics around the County for the week of June 27. These clinics are available to all eligible individuals without registration or appointments. 

Please check the details of events below to confirm dates, locations, times, and age eligibility depending on the vaccine being administered. Locations offering Moderna and Pfizer are providing first and second doses. If you are receiving your second dose, please bring your CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card to be updated. 

Individuals attending these events should be weather aware as temperatures are expected to be hot over the weekend. Remember to drink plenty of water and wear appropriate clothing as parts of the line are outside and exposed to weather, and wear garments that allow you to easily expose your arm.  

*The vaccination sites are closed to press. While vaccinations are occurring, each site is considered to be a hospital with patients and only authorized visits are allowed. Agencies listed in parenthesis for each location (Austin Public Health or Travis County) are the only entities that can authorize admittance. 

Travis County Expo Center operations and County walk-in clinics will be closed this weekend due to the 4th of July holiday. Austin Public Health will operate the clinic at Little Walnut Creek on Saturday, July 3rd.


Tuesday, June 29 

Southeast Library (APH) 

Little Walnut Creek Library (APH) 

JD's Supermarket (Travis County) 

JD's Supermarket (Travis County) 

JD's Supermarket (Travis County) 

  • Time: 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.  
  • Address: 9111 FM 812 Austin, TX 78719 
  • Vaccine: Pfizer (12 years and up), Johnson and Johnson (18+ years only) 

JD's Supermarket (Travis County) 

Wednesday, June 30 

Trinity Center (APH) 

  • Time: 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. 
  • Address: 304 E 7th St, Austin, TX 78701 
  • Vaccine: Moderna and Johnson & Johnson (18+ years only) 

Southeast Library (APH) 

Little Walnut Creek Library (APH) 

Thursday, July 1 

El Shaddai (APH) 

Southeast Library (APH) 

Little Walnut Creek Library (APH) 

JD's Supermarket (Travis County) 

JD's Supermarket (Travis County) 

JD's Supermarket (Travis County) 

  • Time: 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.  
  • Address: 9111 FM 812 Austin, TX 78719 
  • Vaccine: Pfizer (12 years and up), Johnson and Johnson (18+ years only) 

JD's Supermarket (Travis County) 

Friday, July 2 

AECOM UT (APH) 

Southeast Library (APH) 

Little Walnut Creek Library (APH) 

Saturday, July 3

Little Walnut Creek Library (APH) 


COVID-19 Information 

For more information on COVID-19 and vaccinations, visit www.AustinTexas.gov/COVID19 or call 3-1-1 (512-974-2000). 

H-E-B Austin Symphony July 4 Concert & Fireworks Returns 2021



Join the City of Austin and the Austin Symphony Orchestra this July 4 for an event complete with a fireworks display over the city skyline backed by symphonic patriotic classics. The Austin Symphony Orchestra presents the H-E-B Austin Symphony Annual July 4th Concert and Fireworks - planned, produced, and performed entirely by the Austin Symphony, with the help of its generous sponsors.
 
The performance will begin at 8:00 p.m., followed by "mile-high" fireworks. The event is free and open to the public. Logistical information about the event can be found on the City of Austin webpage.

Date/Time:      Sunday, July 4, 2021 at 8:00 p.m.
Location:          Auditorium Shores and the Long Center
Tickets:             Free and Open to Public
Box Office:       512.476.6064  www.AustinSymphony.org

Be Prepared and Leave No Trace

Please follow Leave No Trace principles. Plan ahead and prepare. Dispose of waste properly. Be considerate of other visitors.
  • You will be outdoors, so wear sensible shoes, clothes, and hats for sun protection.
  • Pack water for hydration, bug spray, and blankets
  • Pack a flashlight if you are traveling the Hike & Bike Trail
  • Personal umbrellas may be used
  • Folding chairs with attached canopies are allowed
  • Food and beverage vendors will be on site
  • Clean up after yourself
Park Rules and City Ordinances
  • No glass or Styrofoam
  • No alcohol allowed on site
  • Swimming in Lady Bird Lake is prohibited
  • Smoking and vaping is prohibited in City of Austin parks - Class C Misdemeanor
  • Vending at the park site without a permit - $200 minimum fine, Class C Misdemeanor
Prohibited Items
  • Drones are prohibited at the event per FAA regulations
  • No personal fireworks on site, including sparklers
  • E-Z Up style or pop-up canopies/tents are not permitted
  • Barbeque grills and cooking is prohibited at the event site
  • Please leave pets at home, as the fireworks during the performance is highly upsetting to our 4-legged friends. If you lose your pet, check with the Austin Animal Center. 
Getting There

For the best experience, park north of Lady Bird Lake in the downtown area to avoid the congestion in and around Lamar, Barton Springs Rd. and Riverside (all areas south of the park).
 
The Bouldin Creek Neighborhood will have neighborhood parking restrictions in place for safety.
Parking on green spaces and parkland is prohibited as well as along Rights of Way and medians, blocking private drives and lots, and utilizing "Not Permitted" areas may subject you to fines, ticketing and/or towing at your own expense.

Transportation Parking Options
  • Public Parking Options north of Lady Bird Lake
  • Convention Center Garages
  • State Garages (garages A, B, F, G and Lot 18 are free) on Trinity between 13th St. & 17th St. near Waterloo Park, State lots on corner of MLK & Trinity and MLK & Brazos.
  • One Texas Center
  • Palmer Events Center Garage
  • City Hall Garage
ADA Parking will be by permit at the Palmer Event Center Garage on a first come, first served basis. Entrance is from the south via Barton Springs Rd.
 
Road Closures

Road closures and/or lane reductions associated with this event start at 10 a.m. and may precede actual event start times. See the street closure map. All streets will be reopened no later than midnight.
 
10:00 a.m.
  • Riverside Drive from Lamar to S. 1st St.
5:00 p.m.
  • Cesar Chavez between MoPac and Congress.
  • Northbound and Southbound MoPac will be diverted to 5th St. and Enfield/5th St.
Trail Closures
  • Motorized vehicles are prohibited on the trails.
  • The lower portion of the Hike & Bike Trail on the north side of Lady Bird Lake (between Seaholm intake Structure and S. 1st St.) will be closed at 10 a.m. The upper sidewalk will along Cesar Chavez will remain open.
    • Trail users should take the Cesar Chavez south curb line trail and sidewalk between Shoal Creek and 1st Street area.
    • Interactive map (PARD to Update) of trail detours and closures.
Lake Closures

For safety reasons, Lady Bird Lake between the railroad trestle bridge and the S. 1st St. bridge will be closed from 8 p.m. to midnight.
 
Austin Police Department 

The Austin Police Department is focused on saving lives in the Austin metropolitan area and making the roadways safe for everyone through education and enforcement. APD's No-Refusal DWI Initiative is effective Thursday, July 1 through Monday, July 5, from 10 p.m. – 5 a.m. daily. Have a plan to get home safely. Don't drink and drive.
 
Austin Fire Department

The Austin Fire Department reminds you that it is illegal to possess, use, or sell fireworks within the City of Austin. Call 3-1-1 to report illegal fireworks.
 
Austin Public Health

Austin Public Health recommends attendees mask up if unvaccinated or immunocompromised to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
 
About the Austin Symphony Orchestra
Founded in 1911, the Austin Symphony Orchestra (ASO) is Austin's oldest performing arts group. The ASO offers a complete season of musical and educational programming. Masterworks concerts include a series of eight concert pairs running monthly September through May in the state-of-the-art Joe R. & Teresa Lozano Long Center for the Performing Arts. Our season also features the Sarah & Ernest Butler Pops Series: October & February Pops at the Long Center and December & June Pops at Palmer Events Center. Programming for the entire family includes the Halloween Children's Concert, "A Very Merry Symphony," H-E-B Austin Symphony July 4th Concert & Fireworks, as well as the popular James C. Armstrong Youth Educations Programs, which include Children's Day Art ParkYoung People's Concerts, High School Concert Tour and a variety of other school programs.
 
About Austin Center for Events
The Austin Center for Events is a collaborative assembly of City of Austin departments and agencies designed to streamline special event permitting on public and private property. ACE is anchored by teams from Austin Public Health, Transportation, Parks, Music, Police, Fire, EMS, Code, Austin Resource Recovery, Development Services, and partner agencies, and works closely with event organizers to guide them through the special event permitting process. More information at www.austintexas.gov/ace

About Austin Parks and Recreation
Austin Parks and Recreation seeks to inspire our community to learn, play, protect and connect by creating diverse programs and experiences in sustainable natural spaces and public places. This City of Austin Department protects and maintains parkland, urban forest, and trails as well as offering sports, recreation, educational enrichment, arts programs, cultural opportunities, and nature and aquatic activities for Austinites. For more information visit AustinTexas.gov/Parks.

About Austin Transportation
The Austin Transportation Department (ATD) is a department of the City of Austin responsible for a variety of transportation, mobility, and safety functions throughout the community. ATD works with all modes of transportation and many Austin-area partners and agencies to deploy an all-ages and abilities network. For more information, visit AustinTexas.gov/Transportation.


UT Austin Teaming up with City of Austin and Community Members to Fight Extreme Heat

Grant awarded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration will help advance heat mapping and community engagement efforts
Austin is known for its hot summers, but heat isn't felt the same way across the city. Residents living in more shaded, tree-covered areas are experiencing heat differently than others who live near more pavement and roadways, for example.
 
A partnership between the University of Texas at Austin, the City of Austin, community groups, and East Austin residents aims to find out where hot temperatures affect people the most — and propose solutions to cool those places down.
 
The two-year project has three main goals: creating dynamic heat maps that plot how people experience the heat alongside actual temperature measurements; using those maps to develop strategies to cool down temperature hot spots; and finally, presenting the data and potential solutions to community members and City decision-makers. 
 
The temperature measurements will start in early July, and last through the summer. The temperature maps will include the entire city, but the project team will focus on collecting public input and making improvements in East Austin, where residents encounter hot spots more frequently.
 
"This project will help businesses and communities, and it is helping students to develop a purpose for their research," said project lead Dev Niyogi, a professor at the UT Jackson School of Geosciences and Cockrell School of Engineering. "They are not simply trying to develop an analysis or a plot, it's a project that means a better life for someone if we do this right."
 
The project is one of four chosen by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced on June 29 to combat extreme heat in urban environments. It builds on a heat study in East Austin led by the City of Austin's Office of Sustainability last summer that recruited 17 volunteers, including Niyogi, to collect heat measurements.
 
"Extreme heat caused by climate change is a major threat to our community," said the City's Chief Sustainability Officer Lucia Athens. "This grant will allow important work to continue on heat mitigation in areas of our city that are most affected." 
 
By using a combination of satellite data, on-the-ground sensors, and computer models, the heat maps will be able to give a view of the temperature landscape that can go from all of Central Texas to a single street, with temperature readings ranging from every 1,000 square feet to every 3-10 square feet.
 
However, measurements and models don't always give a complete picture and may differ from how residents are experiencing heat. To ensure temperature readings and community experiences are aligned, the project team will incorporate resident input from the very beginning, engaging in discussions about temperature hot spots in their communities and receiving feedback on temperature maps.
 
"The data isn't complete without feedback on how residents are truly experiencing heat," Athens said. "They are the experts in their community."
 
There are many ways to reduce heat in specific areas, from adding greenery to installing light-colored pavement. To make sure any proposed solutions hold up over time, the researchers will investigate how they will affect local temperatures in the coming decades.
 
###
 
 
About the University of Texas' Jackson School of Geosciences
The Jackson School of Geosciences at The University of Texas at Austin is among the most established and well-regarded geoscience programs in the world. The school includes the University's Department of Geological Sciences, one of the country's oldest geoscience departments, and two world-renowned research units, the Institute for Geophysics and the Bureau of Economic Geology. Find more information at www.jsg.utexas.edu.
 
 
About the City of Austin's Office of Sustainability
Austin's Office of Sustainability works to ensure a thriving, equitable, and ecologically resilient community by providing leadership, influencing positive action through engagement, and creating measurable benefits for Austin. The Office works to achieve net-zero community-wide greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, a healthy and just local food system, resource-efficient strategies for municipal operations, tangible projects that demonstrate sustainability, and a resilient and adaptive city. Find out more at www.austintexas.gov/sustainability.

Friday, June 25, 2021

New shared use path to open on east side of Longhorn Dam bridge


As work continues on interim safety and mobility improvements to South Pleasant Valley Road over the Longhorn Dam bridge, the construction work zone will shift from the east side of the bridge to the west side during the early hours of Sunday, June 27. Austin Transportation will establish a temporary new temporary trail detour on Monday, June 28.

The new detour will route people walking and biking across the lake to the newly built shared-use pathway on the east side of the bridge using two newly constructed Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon signals. The detour will remain in place while the west side of the bridge is closed for construction. Construction will continue to build out another shared-use pathway on the west side of the bridge. Future work will include final markings and signal enhancements to complete the project.

A map illustrating the Phase 2 construction area and detour route for people walking or biking across the bridge.

View printable detour map here

All vehicular travel lanes across the Longhorn Dam bridge will be closed from approximately 12 a.m. - 5 a.m. on Sunday, June 27 as crews adjust the traffic control set up to prepare the work zone for the next phase of project construction. During the closure, people driving will be detoured to use either I-35 or US-183 South for alternate routes across Lady Bird Lake. People driving northbound toward the bridge will be detoured to Lakeshore Boulevard. People driving southbound will be detoured to Cesar Chavez Street. Pedestrian and bicycle access across the bridge will remain intact throughout the night. 

This work is part of the 2016 Mobility Bond project to install near-term safety improvements to South Pleasant Valley Road from Cesar Chavez Street to Elmont Drive. The changes are intended to address crash patterns resulting in more than $46 million in comprehensive crash costs over the last five years. Construction of the interim improvements began in January 2021.

VIEW: map of the project design

VIEW: video of construction progress

In November 2020, Austin voters passed Proposition B, providing $102 million for major capital improvements, including a new "wishbone" bicycle and pedestrian bridge over Lady Bird Lake. Full design and construction of the new bridge are expected to take five years. 

For more information, visit AustinTexas.gov/LonghornDam.

Austin Transportation delivers safe, reliable mobility for all community members through the City's network of bikeways, roadways, and walkways. From signs to signals and planning to parking, we work to improve any way you move. Austin Transportation leads our community's Vision Zero goal of eliminating traffic deaths and serious injuries on Austin streets, the achievement of a 50/50 commute type split by 2039 as established in the Austin Strategic Mobility Plan, and actively seeks innovative solutions and piloting technology that can decrease the use of single-occupancy vehicles and improve safety through Austin Transportation's Smart Mobility Office. Visit AustinTexas.gov/Transportation for more information. 



Road Closure of Lou Neff Road to take place July 6 - 30




Those who use CapMetro to get to the park during road closure will receive free entry to Barton Springs Pool!

Austin Parks Foundation has been working hard on the revitalization of the new Zilker Eagle mini train. Several improvement projects surrounding the tracks, depot and tunnels are slated for this Summer, each marking an important milestone on the road to the fall opening.
 
Lou Neff Road Closure:
An essential part of the project includes improvements to the train route. Due to slope failure at the old turnaround, there will be a new turnaround location near Lou Neff Point. Austin Parks Foundation has partnered on this project with the Parks and Recreation Department, who will be instituting a closure of the entirety of the inner loop road around the great lawn. Lou Neff Road and all associated parking will be closed down July 6 through July 30 to re-align the road, accommodate ADA improvements, perform asphalt maintenance, and make electrical service modifications.
 
Alternative Park Access:
During this road closure, Austin Parks Foundation is asking Zilker Park visitors to take alternate forms of transportation, including bicycles, ride sharing and public transportation. As parking will be even more limited during this time, using CapMetro is highly encouraged. The CapMetro 30 Local route goes to Zilker Park via Barton Springs Road. Those who ride the bus to Zilker Park during the closure can share their physical or app ride receipt at the Barton Springs Pool check-in desk to receive complimentary entry to the pool on behalf of Austin Parks Foundation. Visitors are encouraged to visit CapMetro's Trip Planner at www.capmetro.org/planner for route options and up to date schedules.
 
Additional Zilker Train Improvements:
July and August will continue to see improvements to the train tunnel, railbed and the depot. Train tunnel improvements made possible by Kendra Scott will create an exciting new ending to the train ride experience while fixing drainage issues and providing additional lighting and functional roll-up doors for the train's home. The existing gravel rail base will be removed and restored for the new railway, and drainage issues along the route will be corrected. Additionally, new railroad ties and rail will be installed for the new train. Thanks to the generous support of CapMetro, restoration and maintenance of the existing train depot building and surrounding site will address current accessibility issues, as well as lighting, landscaping and functionality in the depot area so that the train and operations are accessible, comfortable and welcoming to all. The Zilker Eagle mini train is currently being built in Arizona and will be delivered this fall.
 
Earlier this year, APF announced the new name and branding of the Zilker train. The new Zilker Eagle honors the 60-year tradition of having a mini train in Zilker Park, while also looking to the future of this beloved park attraction. The name was chosen from over 700 submissions and voted on by over 7,000 Austinites, and hearkens back to both the original Zilker mini train and the passenger train that once graced the Missouri Pacific Railroad right here in Austin.
 
For more information on the Zilker Eagle, including construction updates and timeline visit www.zilkertrain.org/construction.

Town Hall to Address Community Questions Aboutthe City’s Budget Process and Homelessness Response

On Saturday, June 26 from 10 to 11 a.m., the community is invited to attend a Town Hall at Dittmar Recreation Center (1009 W Dittmar Rd.) in District 2. Topics to be covered include the City's budget and homelessness response as well as the District 2 office's anti-displacement and resilience building efforts. The event is hosted by Austin City Council Member Vanessa Fuentes and panelists include city manager Spencer Cronk, chief homeless strategy officer Dianna Grey and budget officer Kerri Lang.
 
A light breakfast of breakfast tacos, pan dulce and coffee will be served. Face masks are not required but are highly recommended. Attendees are encouraged to register in advance. The event is open to all Austinites.
 
Council Member Fuentes is available for media interviews. For City staff, interview requests will be at their discretion.

 


Who:       Council Member Vanessa Fuentes, City Manager Spencer Cronk, Chief Homeless Strategy Officer Dianna Grey and Budget Officer Kerri Lang
 
What:       A town hall to discuss the City's upcoming budget process and its homelessness response
 
When:       Saturday, June 26, 10–11 a.m.
 
Where:       Dittmar Recreation Center – 1009 W Dittmar Rd, Austin, TX 78745 (District 2)

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Zilker Park Vision Plan Community Meeting #1, June 29



AUSTINITES INVITED TO COMMUNITY MEETING #1 FOR FIRST-EVER COMPREHENSIVE ZILKER PARK VISION PLAN 
The City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department (PARD) is hosting the first virtual meeting for the Zilker Park Vision Plan and invites all Austin residents to participate and share their thoughts.
 
The Vision Plan process is the first planning effort in the park's 104-year history to cover the entire 350 acres and the wide variety of natural features, programs, landmarks, and services. All residents of Austin are encouraged to join the planning process to share their current and future hopes, desires, and ideas for Austin's beloved park. 

ZILKER PARK VISION PLAN 
Virtual Community Meeting #1 
Tuesday, June 29
6 p.m. 
Zoom Meeting Registration 
There will be Spanish interpretation and closed captions.

A recording will be available on AustinTexas.gov/ZilkerVision and community members are encouraged to share stories or feedback at  SpeakUp Austin page.
 
The first Community Meeting will be fun and interactive with live-polling activities and discussion. Participants will review the input that has been received from the survey and learn about the Guiding Principles and Goals Draft as well as the Site Analysis and Existing Needs Report. 

Since December of 2020, more than 3,000 community members took surveys and had small group discussions to help the draft goals and guiding principles for the Zilker Vision Plan.

About the Vision Plan  
The Zilker Park Vision Plan is a community-driven planning process to establish a guiding framework for the restoration and future development of Zilker Metropolitan Park. It is the first comprehensive planning initiative to encompass the park's 350 acres and associated facilities. 
  
Zilker Park is Austin's oldest metropolitan park. In 1997, the park was added to the National Register of Historic Places as the park includes many resources of historical, architectural, and archeological significance. 
  
Today, the park serves as a hub for many recreational activities and includes major facilities and amenities including, but not limited to, Barton Springs Pool, Zilker Botanical Garden, Austin Nature and Science Center, Zilker Clubhouse, Girl Scout Lodge, Sunshine Camp, Zilker Hillside Theater, Zilker Caretaker Lodge, Umlauf Sculpture Gardens, McBeth Recreation Center, the Butler Hike and Bike Trail, and Barton Creek Trail. The park is home to large-scale events such as the Austin City Limits Music Festival, the Trail of Lights, and ABC Kite Fest.


(06/25-06/27) Austin Public Health and Travis County Community COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics


Pop-Up Clinics Available Across County for Weekend of 06/25
Austin Public Health (APH) and Travis County will be partnering with local community organizations to provide pop-up COVID-19 vaccination clinics around the County for the weekend of June 25th. These clinics are available to all eligible individuals without registration or appointments.

Please check the details of events below to confirm dates, locations, times, and age eligibility depending on the vaccine being administered. Locations offering Moderna and Pfizer are providing first and second doses. If you are receiving your second dose, please bring your CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card to be updated.

Individuals attending these events should be weather aware as temperatures are expected to be hot over the weekend. Remember to drink plenty of water and wear appropriate clothing as parts of the line are outside and exposed to weather, and wear garments that allow you to easily expose your arm. 

 

Friday, June 25

Manor Senior High School (APH) AECOME Rainey (APH) Little Walnut Creek Library (APH) Southeast Library (APH)


Saturday, June 26

Sacred Heart (APH) Travis County Expo (Travis County) Oswaldo A.B. Cantu/Pan Am Recreation Center (Travis County) Givens Recreation Center (Travis County) Mendez Middle School (Travis County) Little Walnut Creek Library (APH)


Sunday, June 27

Travis County Expo (Travis County) LGBTQI+ Vaccine Event (APH)  
COVID-19 Information
For more information on COVID-19 and vaccinations, visit www.AustinTexas.gov/COVID19 or call 3-1-1 (512-974-2000).

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Prescribed Burns Planned to Help Restore Native Grasslands on Austin’s Water Quality Protection Lands




 

Prescribed burns are planned this summer season on Austin's Water Quality Protection Lands in Hays County.
 
The Water Quality Protection Lands (WQPL) program actively manages more than 30,000 acres to benefit the quality and quantity of water recharging the Edwards Aquifer, which provides water to both Barton Springs and to groundwater wells in Hays and Travis Counties. Austin Water Wildland Conservation Division manages the lands.
 
"Conducting prescribed burns is one of the strategies used to manage these lands and protect groundwater in Central Texas," said Luke Ball, Austin Water Wildland Conservation Division. "Prescribed burns improve the resiliency of our land when they are used as a planned seasonal management tool." 
 
Prescribed burns mimic the natural fire cycle in a way that can be planned and organized to limit fire intensity and can serve both natural landscapes and human communities by reducing the potential for destructive wildfires. Prescribed fire reduces brush and promotes grasslands which provide the optimal quality and quantity of water to recharge the aquifer. Wildland Conservation staff has seen wildflowers and native grass communities experience greater biodiversity after prescribed fires. Grassland birds like quail and northern harrier hawks benefit from open habitat, found after a fire, for nesting and feeding.
 
A team of highly trained professionals comprised of Austin Water staff, city and county fire departments, and federal, state and local land management agencies ensures that safety is their primary objective. Partnerships with agencies such as the US Fish and Wildlife Service, The Nature Conservancy, the Wildflower Center, the Texas Forest Service, and Travis County Natural Resources as well as coordination with the Austin Fire Department, neighboring fire departments and emergency service districts all contribute to successful prescribed burns.

All personnel meet specific training, experience, fitness and personal protective equipment requirements for the position they perform on the fireline. The prescription for each fire takes into account weather conditions– including wind and past precipitation – and requires specific parameters for the burn to ensure the fire behavior will meet objectives and can be safely controlled.

MORE INFORMATION AND NOTIFICATIONS
 
Austin Water will notify the public and neighbors before each prescribed burn event. Notifications will include maps with the specific location. Neighbors or anyone interested, can sign up to receive notifications by email at this link.

Follow regular updates about prescribed burns at: www.facebook.com/AustinWater and  www.twitter.com/AustinWater

For more information, please visit www.austintexas.gov/rxfire.

Onion Creek Metro Park Gets a Recommitment in Needed Attention

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