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About the Foundation

The Downtown Austin Alliance Foundation was established in 2019 as the 501(c)(3) nonprofit extension of the Downtown Austin Alliance. The Foundation’s mission is to ignite the potential of downtown—through art and creative spaces that capture the spirit of Austin—by and for everyone.

The Foundation is charged with implementing key projects that support the Downtown Alliance’s vision. That includes holding the management contract to operate, program and fund Republic Square, as well as leading place-based activations and initiatives downtown as outlined in the Roadmap to Recovery and Resilience.

To get involved or for more information, please contact the Foundation.

2024 Impact Report

The Foundation supports community-driven initiatives that celebrate the vibe of Austin through resource development, cultural placemaking in public spaces, and parks throughout downtown. Check out our Foundation's community impact since May 2023.

Read Our Impact Report

301 Congress Porch

Anchored by the 5-story mural “Where the Wildflowers Grow” by the artist DAAS, the 301 Congress Porch is amid a massive transformation. Putting community-driven design first, this nook of Austin’s downtown is quickly becoming a place for creativity, inspiration, and activity for all.

Check out the Progress on "Where the Wildflowers Grow"

Austin Mural Tour

Explore the Downtown Austin Mural Map through the camera lens of Jay Ybarra, one of Austin’s most talented portrait and street photographers. This tour was curated by the Downtown Austin Alliance as part of Writing on the Walls to help you experience a collection of inspirational and iconic murals in and around downtown Austin. Watch the live painting of the art box addition to this tour by joining us for the Bike Tour on March 12, 2022.

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Ann Richards Art Project

Writing on the Walls 2021 is a public art installation showcasing former Texas Governor Ann Richards, marking the 30th anniversary of her inauguration. The project features almost 100 banners along Congress Avenue containing twelve notable quotes and images of the big-haired governor throughout her lifetime.

To introduce the governor to a new generation, we created selfie spots near the banners and hired Soledad Fernandez-Whitechurch to create an Instagrammable cutout of Gov. Richards.

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Republic Square

Republic Square has been downtown’s central gathering place since Austin’s founding. The Downtown Austin Alliance is responsible for keeping the park active and welcoming and oversees all of the park’s operations, maintenance, programming, events and fundraising.

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Writing on the Walls

Writing on the Walls is an annual series of collaborative public art installations and events. At the inaugural event in March 2020, local, national, and international artists–Sandra Chevrier, Shepard Fairey, and Sadé Lawson–simultaneously created two new landmarks in downtown Austin.

In Fall 2020, local developer Manifold Real Estate and Hsu Architecture invited us to partner on four murals at their Bouldin Creek project. The Downtown Austin Alliance commissioned local artists Jana Swec, Tyler Hobbs, Soophie Roach and Soledad Fernandez-Whitechurch to complete the project.

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Blue Starlite Drive-in

In August 2020, the Downtown Austin Alliance partnered with Blue Starlite Mini Urban Drive-in and the Texas Facilities Commission to host a COVID-friendly downtown drive-in movie theater every weekend of the year. Screenings continue to take place Thursday-Saturday nights on the rooftop of 300 San Antonio Street. The drive-in format was also used to host other creative community events such as slam poetry nights.

Shop the Block

The Downtown Austin Alliance partnered with the businesses on the 600 block of Congress through a new City of Austin program to reinvigorate downtown. The program helped businesses and restaurants activate their sidewalks and outdoor areas through socially distanced dining areas, music and programming. The success of this program led to a quicker re-opening of Royal Blue Grocery and Caroline’s restaurant.

Busking on Second Street

The Downtown Austin Alliance privately raised money to hire local musicians to play live music on Second Street every Saturday and Sunday starting in February 2021. Through this partnership with Health Alliance for Austin Musicians (HAAM) and the 2ND Street District, we were able to successfully promote shopping and dining while putting Austin musicians back to work.

Clarity Parks Project

Republic Square was chosen by the Clarity Parks Project and Project for Public Spaces as one of three urban planning spaces to receive a $47,000 grant from the makers of Claritin. The grant was used to enhance and protect the Auction Oaks, adding new landscaping, plantings and water-resilient features in the area surrounding the history trees. The work to enhance the health of the 850+ year old Auction Oaks was partially funded by a grant from the City of Austin's forestry division.

P A R K S P A C E

A colorful grid of yellow, orange and red squares were painted on the lawn at Republic Square as part of the Austin Foundation for Architecture installation series, P A R K S P A C E. The installation was designed to help park visitors visualize social distancing so they could safely enjoy outdoor activities six feet apart. The Downtown Austin Alliance, AIA Austin and Austin Parks and Recreation department partnered with AFA on the initiative.

Central Park Conservancy

Republic Square participated in the Central Park Conservancy Institute for Urban Parks' inaugural 2019-2020 Partnerships Lab. It was one of only five U.S. organization selected for this prestigious mentorship program.

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