AUSTIN -- An East Austin business is back in operation after getting a restraining order against the City.
Over the past three months, thousands of people have flocked to East Side Tubes to float the Colorado River. But as suddenly as it took off, Dan Walker’s business shut down when code enforcement cut off their access to the river over safety concerns.
The City said railing on a walkway into the water was a danger.
“It’s something that has hand rails and steps down and we haven't had any problems with that,” said Walker.
He also argues that the stairs are not his property. He says they're the property of the state and therefore he cannot get the proper permit to fix the stairs.
“Our property line ends right here and that's easy to see in a survey, so if they want me to bring it up to code, I would have to be able to go get a permit, but that office won't do it. It's like a loop you can't get done,” said Walker.
At the same time the Parks and Recreation Department was considering a recommendation to prohibit tubing on the east side Colorado River entirely, also over safety concerns.
“You have fluctuating water levels and swift water due to the releases from Austin Energy and LCRA at any given time without any forewarning,” said Kirk Scanlon with Parks and Recreation.
The motion to ban tubes was shot down by the board. But East Side Tubes was still closed, until Walker appealed to a Travis County judge.
“We drafted up what's called a ‘TRO.’ It's a temporary restraining order which basically gives us 14 days of immunity," he said.
As of this weekend, Walker is operating legally but he admits business has slowed.
“I feel like we're starting over, you know trying to let everybody to know we're here, and that's really tough."
On Thursday, Sept. 12, Walker is scheduled to go to court with the City of Austin where he says the City will have to provide evidence the stairs are his responsibility and not state property.
East Side Tubes will be allowed to stay open for business during court proceedings.