Creating, preserving and enhancing the vibe, vitality and value for everyone
The Downtown Austin Alliance is the steward of our community’s collective vision for downtown Austin and enhances every aspect of the downtown experience.
Our mission is to create, preserve and enhance the vibe, vitality and value of downtown Austin for everyone.
As Austin continues to be one of the fastest-growing cities in the nation, it’s absolutely crucial that we and our partners guide our city’s growth in a way that’s responsible to current and future Austinites. We also honor downtown Austin’s history: We acknowledge the area that we call Central Texas belonged to the Indigenous Peoples of the Tonkawa, Comanche and Apache communities. This acknowledgment is an expression of deep appreciation for those who were here before us.
Downtown at a Glance
30 Years of the Downtown Austin Alliance
On April 15, 1993, the Austin City Council created a Public Improvement District (PID) to provide funding to implement downtown initiatives. In September of that year, City Council contracted with the Downtown Austin Alliance to catalyze change and champion and implement downtown’s revitalization. We’ve been at work ever since.
Today, our non-profit organization partners with businesses, civic organizations, cultural institutions and thought leaders to continue our work that began 30 years ago. As downtown’s full-time advocate and champion, we provide:
- Direct Services: Keeping downtown clean, safe, beautiful and welcoming
- Advocacy: Listening to everyone to make informed, inclusive policymaking decisions
- Planning: Bringing people and organizations together to shape our neighborhoods
- Placemaking: Activating urban spaces with inclusive programming
- Research: Serving as a central hub for downtown data and metrics
Downtown Austin and the Downtown Austin Alliance may look a little different than they did in 1993, but our work has always been and will always be focused on enhancing the vibe and vitality of downtown for everyone.
Our Core Values
Dedicated to downtown, our team is led by our six guiding principles. These are our commitments to you and how we approach working toward our mission in everything we do:
Our team is mission-driven, and our core values are at the heart of our daily work to make downtown a better place for all.Meet the Staff⟶
Our board, committees and governance structure are changing to adapt to the needs of our new strategic plan.Meet the Board⟶
Our Downtown Ambassador team is always on the street ensuring downtown is clean, safe and welcoming.Meet the Ambassadors⟶
In the fall of 2017, more than 3,000 Austinites helped shape the Downtown Austin Vision, identifying four priorities that work together to create and sustain the downtown you will always love.
The Vision is the north star to guide the future of downtown toward community values and aspirations for a thriving, welcoming, vibrant and connected downtown. This Vision serves as catalyst for the Downtown Austin Alliance, along with other Austin leaders and citizens, to leverage downtown’s prosperity and enhance its value for the entire community.
Guided by Downtown Vision put forth by the Austin community, we created our 2023-2028 Strategic Plan.
Our Strategic Plan
Every five years, the Downtown Austin Alliance’s board members, community partners, stakeholders and staff create a new strategic plan to guide our work toward achieving our vision.
In August 2022, the Downtown Alliance initiated efforts to create the organization’s 2023- 2028 Strategic Plan. With the assistance of BDS Planning and Urban Design, the Downtown Austin Alliance Board of Directors approved the plan in March 2023.
Our strategic priorities for the next five years show our organization is dedicated to keeping downtown Austin a place by and for everyone. We’re focusing our efforts on public space experiences, activating places through creative arts, mobility and addressing affordability challenges. We’re also bringing our attention to large-scale transformative downtown projects that intersect all of our strategic plan pillars. We’ll achieve the goals we set for ourselves by focusing on not only the work we take the lead on, but also through the partnerships we form with community organizations and how we use our platform to advocate for a better downtown for all.
The Downtown PID
Our Public Improvement District (PID) boundaries have been modified to better align our direct services and advocacy with areas projected to have the most significant growth over the next decade. The PID’s northern boundary has been brought down to 15th Street, the western boundary is more evenly aligned than before, and the southern edge has been extended to include the future expansion of the Waterloo Greenway system and to include properties in the South Central Waterfront area.
Every 10 years, the Downtown Austin Alliance membership is petitioned to reauthorize the public improvement district and the work of our organization. Our members are the owners of commercial properties valued at over $500,000. Each year, our members pay assessments on their property value; that’s how we fund the work of the Downtown Austin Alliance. We’re authorized to continue our work through April 2033.
For questions about the Downtown Austin PID or Downtown Austin Alliance membership, contact us.