Revitalized downtown Austin park to reopen after year-long closure

CULTUREMAP - Parts of downtown Austin’s Republic Square, which has been closed since June 2016 for a $5.8 million makeover, will reopen next month.

On Thursday, August 17, the Austin City Council approved a plan for the Downtown Austin Alliance to start managing the park effective September 1 with a first-year budget of nearly $731,000. Access to the park will be limited until the redo is finished next spring.

The alliance says Republic Square, located at Fourth and Guadalupe streets, will reopen in phases. Construction fencing will be removed and portions of the park will open to the public September 1. This fall, the park’s lawn will be ready for public use.

By next spring, the park will feature public restrooms; an array of programming, such as farmers markets, education events, live music, and movie screenings; and a cafe serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

No word yet on who will run the cafe and precisely what kind of fare it will serve. However, the Downtown Austin Alliance’s plan for Republic Square hints that an unnamed restaurant group based in Austin will manage and market the eatery, which will be open every day.

Also, Republic Square — nicknamed “The People’s Park” — will be available for events hosting as many as 3,500 guests. Money from the event rentals will go toward operations and programming at the park.

Major events already on the park’s calendar include two holiday parties this December, a Chinese New Year celebration next February, SXSW festivities next March, the Austin Food + Wine Festival next April, a University of Texas football tailgating party in September 2018, and an Austin Film Festival gala in September 2018.

Read the full story on CultureMap Austin.

© 2017 KVUE-TV


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