Makeover Coming For Downtown Austin Plaza

Posted at: 04/08/2013 6:58 PM
Updated at: 04/08/2013 7:07 PM
By: Dan Conradt

(ABC 6 NEWS) -- It’s been described with words like "blight" and "eye-sore".

But that's about to change.

There are changes coming for a downtown Austin focal-point.

"They'll be building a 25 by 27 foot stage. It's going to fit right over the circular half-wall that's already here," Vision 2020's Laura Helle explained, gesturing to the center of the downtown plaza, just off north Main Street in the heart of Austin.

Carpentry students from Riverland community college will donate their skills to build the stage, which is part of Austin’s Vision 2020 Project.

"We think material will be in the $25,000 range," Vision 2020s Laura Helle told us. It’s an expense they hope to cover with grant money.

“They're also going to be making it like a park area where people can have picnics and just enjoy the nice downtown area," Eve Cowan told us.

She works downtown, and says the plaza doesn't look very park-like the way it stands now.

"There's a lot of trash around there and the grass isn’t very clean It’s a gross looking atmosphere."

That’s especially unsightly in a location that should be a community’s centerpiece.  “For Austin, downtown is centrally located and it benefits all of us if it's a vibrant district," Laura Helle explained.

“There's a lot of privately owned businesses down here that would really benefit from a nice place where people go to gather for community events," Eve Cowan added.  “There's fun things coming up like fashion shows, yoga studio classes on the stage, concerts."

“By the time ‘Tuesdays On Main’ starts in June they'll be able to have a stage to perform on," Laura Helle said.

If the weather cooperates, work on the new stage could begin next week.