Anticipated road closures, transit services

Anticipated road closures, transit services

Credit: KVUE News

Anticipated road closures, transit services


by Sneha Antony /

Posted on February 27, 2013 at 6:02 PM

Updated Thursday, Mar 6 at 10:35 PM

AUSTIN -- Thousands of people are expected to fill Austin streets starting March 8 for the SXSW festivities. The City of Austin says this will result in changes in traffic patterns in downtown Austin as well as expanded transit services for the festival-goers.

During the SXSW Music, Film and Interactive Conferences and Festivals, there will be partial and full street closures throughout the downtown area beginning Friday, March 8, through Sunday, March 17.

  • Sixth Street will be open from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. each weekday and on the first weekend of SXSW for commuter traffic. 
  • Sixth Street will be open for deliveries to businesses inside the closure area weekdays from 10 a.m. till 5 p.m.. It will be closed all day Saturday, March 16.
  • Downtown roadways that will remain open throughout the festival include Fourth and Fifth and Seventh through 10th streets. Recommended alternative routes for traveling east and west include 15th and 11th streets.

Click here for a map of all SXSW street closures.

Aside from planned street closures, a number of private parties and events are anticipated downtown and just east of I-35 which may create additional traffic delays throughout the festival.

Capital Metro will expand its services throughout the 10-day festival.

  • MetroRail will offer expanded weekend hours and weekday frequency.
  • The MetroAirport Flyer will operate every 15 minutes with service to/from downtown, the University of Texas and Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.
  • Capital Metro also offers late-night options.

Click here to learn more about SXSW transit options.

March is always a busy month at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. Passengers are advised to arrive in the airport terminal at least two hours prior to departure time March 6 through March 20, and at least 90 minutes early for all other days. Ticketing and security lines will be longer than usual with events such as SXSW, spring break, and Rodeo Austin bringing thousands of extra travelers through the airport. 

Click here for more travel tips at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.

Austin’s park system will still be under a burn ban during the festival.

  • Areas of Auditorium Shores and Brush Square Park will remain open for park users and pet owners, but a portion of the parks will be closed at times during the festival for public and private events.

Austin police are also stepping up their patrol. APD has arranged for additional officers, which will allow the department to improve response to emergency traffic issues, crowd management and emergency issues.

More information on downtown SXSW street closures:

  • The north to southbound streets crossing Sixth Street between Fifth and Seventh streets from San Jacinto Boulevard to Sabine Street will be closed 6 a.m. Friday, March 8, through 3 a.m. Sunday, March 17. 
  • Red River between Fifth and Seventh Streets will close starting March 8 at 6 a.m.
  • Additional blocks from Seventh to 10th Streets will close starting at 6 a.m. Tuesday, March 12, through 3 a.m. Sunday, March 17, with the cross streets remaining open.
  • Trinity Street, from Cesar Chavez Street to Fourth Street, will be closed from 7 a.m. Friday, March 8, to 3 a.m. Sunday, March 17. 
  • East Second and Third streets from San Jacinto Boulevard to Trinity Street will also be closed during this time, and only open to local traffic.
  • The Rainey Street neighborhood will be closed daily between to 6 p.m. to 3 a.m. from Friday, March 8, to Sunday, March 17. All traffic must enter at River Street and there will be restricted access reserved for local businesses and residents.
  • East Fifth Street, from IH-35 to Waller Street, will be closed Tuesday, March 12, at 6 p.m. to 3 a.m. Sunday, March 17.
  • San Marcos Street, from Sixth to Fifth streets, will be closed Tuesday, March 12, at 6 p.m. to 3 a.m. Sunday, March 17.
  • Brushy Street, from Sixth to Fifth streets, will be closed Tuesday, March 12, at 6 p.m. to 3 a.m. Sunday, March 17.
  • Riverside Drive, from South First Street to the traffic circle, will be closed Thursday, March 14, until 3 a.m. Friday, March 15. It will close again at 1 p.m. Friday, March 15, through 3 a.m. Sunday, March 17.

Street closures are subject to change as the festival progresses.

For general information about City programs and services, call 3-1-1 or (512) 974-2000. 

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