AF1 Racing – Downtown Austin’s Neighborhood Superbike and Scooter Store

AF1 Racing – Downtown Austin’s Neighborhood Superbike and Scooter Store

af1 racing - downtown austin retail store

AF1 Racing is opening a Downtown Austin store.  This is their second location, and they are taking the old OK Paper space near Cesar Chavez and Trinity.  I spotted the window graphics going up yesterday, accross the street from Downtown Austin’s Four Seasons Residences.

A quick check of their Facebook page confirmed the news.

Ironically, one month ago I sold my amazing Aprilia Scarabeo 50cc.  Back in 2008, I searched the entire country using Craigslist for a specific two-stroke version with low miles.  (The two strokes had more torque and could zip around much better.)  I found one in Atlanta and shipped it back home.  It quickly became one of my preferred modes of transportation in downtown Austin.

And, I never worried about parking.

Downtown Austin Retail Space

Downtown Austin Retail Space


One of the better trends in urban design is to include retail space below residential buildings.  I see downtown Austin’s retail offerings as overly homogeneous: salon, boutique, restaurant, or bar.  Feedback from DANA members, and urban-Austinites in general, is the desire to see more practical stores to serve the many thousands of people that live and work here.

After the jump are a few examples of the ground floor retail space currently available below some of downtown Austin’s luxury buildings.  You’ll see that space below these buildings is not cheap and ranges from $30-36 per foot plus NNN.  This could yield a monthly lease payment of $3,500-4,000 per month per 1,000 feet of retail space.

The Downtown Austin Alliance has a great list of retail vacancies you should check out, too.

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The Patagonia Welcome Wagon

Patagonia is a welcome addition to Downtown Austin

Patagonia is a welcome addition to Downtown Austin

This past weekend, Downtown Austin’s newest retailer, Patagonia, officially opened its doors.  Located at 316 Congress Ave (map), Patagonia is a milestone in the revitalization of Congress Ave by bringing 7,000 square feet of outdoor clothing that Austinites seem to love.  I make an effort to support businesses that make Downtown a better neighborhood.  So, even though you might be spending less this holiday season, you should consider making the effort to spend that money at local small businesses and businesses that are revitalizing downtown.

According to the Statesman article, the store has shower facilities and bike accommodations for employees, supporting alternative commuting strategies and healthier lifestyles.  Cool!

The DAA, and specifically Linda Asaf, need to be acknowledged here. They are working behind the scenes to help bring new retail, and new life, to Congress Ave.  I am encouraged by property owners beginning to see the light, and investing in long term leases with credit tenants.