I have lived in Austin for the past 18 years. I have seen it grow and change dramatically. About 3 years ago, I purchased my first house just shy of North Lamar and 183. Until then, I lived mostly centrally, enjoying the parks, sidewalks, pools, and the neighborhoods where I resided in general. However, over the past few years I often ask myself: Am I still in Austin?
The City's blatant disregard for my new neighborhood amazes and disheartens me! Even though we are just 10 miles from downtown, we lack sidewalks through our streets, a neighborhood park, pool, or even the consideration of a water park. I see families each weekend construct make shift parks out of empty lots that are scattered with litter, abandoned cars, and surrounded by prostitutes and drug dealers sitting on many a corner. The police's lack of visibility continues to let my neighborhood collapse within itself. The city's segregated development plan focuses mainly on Downtown and the ever popular East and South Austin areas.
WE ARE AUSTIN TOO! We have so much culture to offer in this small and neglected part of town! If the city could begin to take baby steps so to include our neighborhood too, it would only benefit the whole. Austin is rapidly running out of hip and cool locations to build and develop. People flock to our city in the 100s. Isn't it time to start focusing our development plans on the neighborhoods outside the urban core? The other parts of Austin proper?