Yesterday, I posted about the revitalization study underway for Downtown Austin’s Entertainment District. Below are my observations from our night time tour.
Night time tour
Friday, November 20th, midnight – 3am.
The focus is on the entertainment district as a whole – not just Sixth Street. Five of us rendezvoused at the Driskill hotel at midnight and we were on our way. Our mission was not to drink. We were there to observe. We were directed to walk the alleys, the side streets, and take notes on anything we found to be interesting. In general, I never once felt uneasy or threatened. Most people were out having a great time. Good or bad. For better or for worse. Below is what I observed.
- People still wait in lines? I’m getting old!
- Sixth Street, east of Neches was desolate. Minimal activity and seemingly an area which only exists to get from Red River or I-35 to the “good” clubs west of Neches.
- Police congregate on Trinity and Sixth. Couldn’t they spread out?
- Most people looked to be less than 25 years old.
- Concessionaires are doing good business (best wurst had a fifty foot line!)
- Hoek’s Pizza is blasting music louder than some clubs.
- I see and hear more iPod DJs, than I do live bands
- There are crews of guys full of alcohol and testosterone that could easily be instigated into a fight.
- I see one fight in front of the Texas Lottery Commission.
- We stopped and talked with homeless people outside of the ARCH. Some were under the influence of something, but generally not hostile. If anything, they were very chatty and candid about their problems, and the problems surrounding the ARCH. Below are some of the more interesting things we were told.
- Why on earth did they place the ARCH across from a major liquor store and a block from Austin’s biggest weekend party?
- Red River, IMHO, is keeping the “live music capital” brand alive.
- The owners of Koriente maintain a beautiful small garden at the southeast corner of 7th and Sabine. They should be acknowledged for giving to our community.
- None of the lights on Waller Creek were turned on. Who’s in charge of this?
Next, I’ll share my observations from our day time tour