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The Austin City Council voted yesterday to extend the hours that live music can be played outdoors on Red River Street for a six-month trial period, the Austin American Statesman reports.
The new regulations will allow amplified loud music to happen until midnight on Thursdays and 1am on weekends, which is an hour later than the current regulations. The council voted 9-1 for the change, with one member, Delia Garza, abstaining from the vote.
The first proposal was to allow live music until 1:30am on the weekends for an entire year. However, the compromise was reached after the Interim Police Chief requested the change to 1 am to allow police to manage Red River and still get to Sixth Street when the bars close at 2am. The council decided to pilot the new 12am/1am curfew from May to November, and then make a decision whether to extend it by six months.
The study is intended to gather information on how the extra hours could help fill the music venues’ nearly empty coffers and how the extra noise impacts neighbors. Accordingly, they will study the economic impact and noise complaints collected.
Nearby hotel owners came out to protest the change, saying they already received a huge volume of complaints from guests. The hotels are getting an increased volume of corporate guests who expect to be able to sleep at night.
On the other hand, the owners and managers of the bars in the district said that extending hours would help them make money and would give the city a chance to study where noise complaints are coming from to see more clearly what areas are affected the most.
The manager of the Mohawk said that the longer hours would mean larger audiences and as much as 10 percent bigger monthly revenue for venues. The general manager of Stubb’s Bar-B-Q said that the change would allow him to have more outdoor shows and increase his number of employees substantially. Every show needs 65 employees.
Council members expressed concerns, including that the six month period wouldn’t include SXSW and therefore might not give an accurate picture of what changes the extended hours would result in. Another member was worried that they wouldn’t get any new information from the pilot and it would be difficult to change back to the shorter hours after the six months was over. Yet another member, Ora Houston, voted against the ordinance because she didn’t like pilot programs because they tend to become permanent. She used the Short Term Rental ordinance as an example. Language was added to the ordinance to make sure the benefit to musicians, club employees, and other related personnel was measured as well.
Whether you want to be in the middle of the live music or are looking for a quiet sanctuary, we can help! Give Austin Apartments Now a call today at 512-258-8224 to find the perfect apartment for you!
Those who work in retail in Austin tend to live in more affordable areas of town and see most of their income go towards rent according to a new analysis by the Austin Business Journal.
One place they aren’t living is a huge area of central Austin, from Mopac to Shoal Creek and from 45th to Enfield Road. That area has almost no residents who work in retail.
Retail workers are about 11 percent of all workers in the Austin area and total 106,000 people. The median income for retail workers is around $24,600 per year. That’s much lower than the overall median income for the region, which is $36,660 annually. The income for professional, scientific, and technical workers, (the 2nd largest group of workers in the area), is $65,600.
This means that retail employers live mostly in affordable regions of Austin. The map shows a lot of retail workers living in Southeast Austin and a very heavy concentration in Cedar Park.
In the top quarter of neighborhoods with the highest concentration of retail workers, median rent averages $1,090 a month compared to $1,156 per month for the Austin region. Even though the median rent is 5.6 percent lower in the retail worker saturated areas, the residents in those areas pay more of their income, 32.7 percent, for rent. Median gross rent across the Austin area is 31.2 percent of income. In general, housing costs that are over 30 percent of income is considered unaffordable.
By contrast, skilled workers pay an average median rent of $1,230 monthly, but that is just 29.75 percent of their income. Wealthy renters are also on the increase in Austin.
Are you a retail worker who is having trouble finding an apartment that fits in your budget? Austin Apartments Now can help. We have up-to-the-minute knowledge of rental rates, vacancies, and specials at all the best apartments in Austin. Give us a call at 512-258-8224 to find your dream apartment today!