The joy of living downtown is that you can walk just about everywhere. Do you want to see the bats come out from the Congress bridge at sunset? How about a peaceful walk down the Shoal Creek trail? With all the shopping, eating, drinking, and entertainment only a few blocks from your door, you might as well just forget about your car.
Austin B-cycle provides downtown short-term bike rentals using 24 hour/day, on demand bicycle stations. There are also several shops nearby to rent a bike long term, or to buy one yourself. Don’t forget that Mellow Johnny’s Bike Shop is right next door!
Now that you live downtown, you will find that everyone suddenly wants to meet up at your house. Parking isn’t a problem for you, since every condo has one or more assigned parking spaces, but what about your friends?
- The easiest option for them is to park on the street. Curb side parking costs $1 per hour downtown during Hours of Enforcement. Make sure that you read all the parking signs and postings for exceptions and time limits before you pay.
- if they can’t find a space, or if they would like to stay longer then curb parking allows, then another option is to utilize the public parking spaces on P2 of the 360 garage. Just don’t forget to pay at the meter when you park.
- Finally, if you want other options, then there are plenty of surface lots and parking garages nearby. Feel free to utilize these, but make sure that you follow all of their rules so you don’t find yourself in trouble.
I know that paying for parking is unusual for many people, but it is not that difficult to manage once you know how.
What do you do if you are at home and, for whatever reason, you find yourself without a car? We have all been in this situation at some point, but, if you are living downtown, then you will have a couple of options:
- Car2Go is a convenient car sharing service that has dedicated locations all over downtown and central Austin. You can leave the car at any Car2go spot, or most metered spaces when you are done.
- Zipcar is competing service that also has cars downtown and in the UT area. While Zipcar offers a wide variety of different cars, you must bring the car back to the same spot when you are done.
A concierge will be more than happy to call a cab for you if you need one. Or, if you are traveling to another part of downtown, you can always try a pedicab. Just flag down one of these bicycle-powered taxis and hop in if you want a ride. Rates tend to be negotiable, so make sure to ask your driver how much before you take off.
The future of rail includes the possibilities of another Commuter Rail from downtown to Elgin (Green Line) and Regional Rail from Georgetown to San Antonio (with a stop at the downtown Amtrak station). These, and other transportation issues, are being discussed by Project Connect.