Like many downtowns across the country there was a large concentration of single young professionals and investors snapping up downtown Austin lofts and condos. Not anymore.
The market may have catered to singles and empty nesters several years ago but now there’s a much broader spectrum of who lives downtown. While singles and professionals still dominate more families with children are making the move. And with plenty of good public private and charter schools within easy access of downtown – plus parks and a location that’s minutes away from tons of kid-friendly activities – it’s getting easier for families to make the transition.
Another factor that’s drawing more and more people to downtown Austin are the increased services. Whole Foods Market’s flagship store and corporate headquarters at Sixth and Lamar plus tiny neighborhood grocery stores like Royal Blue Grocery in the Second Street District are welcome additions for downtown residents in need of a bottle of bubbly or a loaf of bread.
The newest downtown Austin development projects such as the Second Street District additions to the Warehouse District and new shops and restaurants on Fifth Street have made it a lot easier for people to make the decision to live in the heart of the city. There are also plans to bring in still more retail downtown as residents are demanding more services and options.
For example the Second Street District has done very well with the boutique stores sidewalk cafes and coffee shops that have popped up along the street in the last year or two. The Second Street District is also home to restaurants retail stores home furnishings stores sandwich shops and more. KLRU Studios (home of the long-running “Austin City Limits” television show) and its new performing arts venue – ACL Live – opened adjacent to the new W Hotel and the Austin Children’s Museum and the Mexican-American Cultural Center are close by adding to Austin’s cultural base and downtown appeal.