AUSTIN (KXAN) — The City of Austin released a memo Thursday to bring awareness to the many concurrent events scheduled near the University of Texas and the downtown Austin area Saturday.
Drivers should be prepared to expect traffic delays due to the multiple events around the area.
“Staff anticipates very heavy congestion around the university and in the downtown area during and after these events. Staff have been working with the various events organizers to plan for the ingress and egress of the events to minimize the impact to mobility and ensure safety for all attending,” the city said.
The scheduled UT events include:
- The Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays Track + Field Competition
- Longhorn Run 5k/10K
- Country Music Television Awards for Rehearsals
- Broadway in Austin at Bass Concert Hall
“Although UT is responsible for traffic management for events on their campus, staff are coordinating them to help minimize travel impacts in the area,” the city said.
The scheduled downtown events include:
- Country Music Television Awards Block Party/Stage at Congress Avenue between 8th Street and 11th Street
- Urban Music Festival at Vic Mathias/Auditorium Shores
- Kite Festival at Zilker Park
- Pop-up Picnic at Waterloo Greenway
The city said several divisions would be involved with planning and monitoring mobility during all of the events.
According to the city, specific activities include the following:
- The Office of Special Events and Transportation Engineering created a traffic control plan for the events happening at Clyde Littlefield Stadium, the Moody Center, and Bass Concert Hall.
- The Mobility Management Center will monitor signals and make necessary adjustments in real-time.
- The Shared Mobility team will be working with the different providers to ensure that micromobility devices do not accumulate and impede pedestrian or safety access.
- The Department’s Public Information Office will send out a series of communications encouraging alternate modes of transportation and urging the traveling public to plan their trip or avoid the downtown area if possible.
- More information will be available on the Austin Center of Events website including maps, locations of events and timing.
- In addition, UT is communicating directly with events ticket holders and providing specific directions on how to approach the area and where the designated parking areas are for each event.
Event attendees stay positive despite parking, traffic struggles
Sheila Angel of Illinois was one of thousands of attendees at the Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays Saturday afternoon.
Angel said she made her first-ever visit to Austin to watch her son-in-law run in the men’s 200m race.
A common Austin complaint caught her attention as soon as she got into town Thursday night, Angel said.
“I mean, the traffic is not the greatest, you know, a lot of road construction. We went in a parking garage but it’s slow moving. We took like almost an hour just to get parked,” Angel said.
Despite the parking and traffic delays, Angel said the warm weather made up for any headache caused by heavy congestion.
“It’s good to come out, put your spring and summer clothes on and come out with no boots and your coat. So that’s nice,” Angel said.
Zilker Park was also a stir with this year’s ABC Kite Fest.
Cory Rogers and Cody Calloway drove in from Killeen to fly kites given to them as gifts from family members.
The pair said traffic was the least of their problems during their visit.
“We’re struggling getting the kites up, but it’s been great. The weather is great. Everything’s good,” Calloway said.
Rogers said he hopes others will consider braving the busy spring event season, as this spontaneous trip brought him more fun than expected.
“The last time I flew a kite I think I was 5 years old, now I’m a kid again,” Rogers said.