Downtown offers the best of Austin, amplified. This is where creativity and ingenuity meet to deliver the latest foodie hotspots, legendary live music venues, one-of-a-kind shops, and year-round outdoor fun. Rock out or relax – it’s your call. LET’S GO


Downtown is the epicenter of Austin’s 24/7 idea exchange. This is where enterprises headquarter and entrepreneurs incubate, all harnessing our city’s incredible talent pool, business-friendly infrastructure and uniquely collaborative culture. LET’S GO


Downtown Austin offers residences to suit any style, whether you’re renting or putting down roots. This is where city excitement meets creature comforts – your walkable new neighborhood puts both nightly entertainment and daily essentials within easy reach.LET’S GO


Public Policy

Keeping our competitive advantage.

The DAA advocates for policy that enhances our economic prosperity.



What We Do


Our activities include:

  • Presenting our members’ viewpoints at City Council meetings and other public forums.
  • Bringing disparate groups together to develop solutions to downtown challenges.
  • Participating in long-range planning efforts to shape downtown’s growth and infrastructure.
  • Asking for specific policy or infrastructure changes.
  • Surveying our membership to understand their needs.
  • Providing our members with opportunities to express their opinions constructively.
  • Working over years and even decades to keep important projects on our collective agenda and moving forward toward completion.


Recent and Ongoing Issues


Homelessness Outreach Street Team (HOST)

The Downtown Austin Alliance initiated a partnership with Austin Police Department, Austin-Travis County Integral Care (ATCIC), Austin/Travis County Emergency Medical Services (EMS), Downtown Austin Community Court, and the City of Austin Office of Innovation to create the Homelessness Outreach Street Team (HOST). 
HOST’s primary objective is to proactively engage people living on the streets and connect them with critical social, physical and behavioral health services — thereby reducing crises and increasing public safety. HOST is an interdisciplinary team composed of two police officers, two behavioral health specialists and two paramedics working downtown five days per week. 
In addition to introducing the HOST concept to APD and other partners and serving as the facilitating entity in developing the pilot, the Downtown Alliance is supporting the program financially and donating office space to house the program.
Austin City Council approved funding to continue the pilot through the end of its FY17, with a goal of developing recommendations for scaling in future years. Recognizing this creative and forward-thinking approach, Bloomberg Philanthropies (founded by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg) awarded the City of Austin Office of Innovation a grant of $500,000 annually, for up to three years, to further develop HOST.

Sobriety Center

The Downtown Alliance’s advocacy and direct involvement led the City Council and Travis County Commissioners Court to create a new Sobriety Center downtown. The center, scheduled to open in early 2018, will provide a safe and appropriate alternative to the emergency room or jail for publicly intoxicated individuals to become sober. This will provide a much quicker turnaround time to get police officers back on the street and reduce the impact on very costly jail and hospital resources. It will also facilitate initiation of long-term recovery when needed. 

Affordable Housing Advocacy

The Downtown Alliance is a longtime advocate for “housing first” permanent supportive housing for people experiencing chronic homelessness. In 2016, we continued to advocate for the City Council’s five-year goal of creating 400 units of permanent supportive housing, 200 of which will be housing first units. As its name implies, the housing first approach provides people who are chronically homeless with permanent housing as a first step toward stability, in addition to robust support services. Downtown Alliance supports housing first as a proven best practice to address homelessness.
Mobile Loaves and Fishes’ Community First! Village opened for occupancy in April 2016. At full occupancy, Community First will provide housing, communal facilities, services and income-generating opportunities for 225 people. The Downtown Alliance is a $100,000 contributor to the Community First Village capital campaign.
Austin/Travis County Integral Care’s Housing First Oak Springs development broke ground in Spring 2017. The Downtown Alliance supported the development of this project through a $150,000 challenge grant in 2015 to help Integral Care acquire additional private funding, which they achieved by January 2017. Oak Springs is Austin’s first housing-first project. It will provide 50 permanent supportive housing units, combined with an on-site medical clinic and other supportive services.


The Downtown Alliance continues to participate in CodeNEXT, the City of Austin’s multiyear initiative to revise the land development code — the rules and processes that regulate how land can be used throughout the city. The City’s Imagine Austin Comprehensive Plan identified code revision as a priority to help Austin grow as a compact, connected city.
In 2016, we submitted to the City of Austin CodeNEXT team a white paper that summarizes the findings of our extensive research into the land development code updates needed downtown. To develop this report, the Downtown Austin Alliance CodeNEXT task force evaluated the code strategies identified in the Downtown Austin Plan, met with professionals involved in downtown development, and conducted focus groups with downtown developers and professionals. Our white paper recommends which elements of the Downtown Austin Plan should be kept and which should be evaluated or revised. It also identifies what is and is not working with the current code and processes.
The Downtown Alliance is also a partner in Evolve Austin Partners, an organization that champions the Imagine Austin Comprehensive Plan, which Austinites crafted to create a more affordable, mobile, and sustainable city. Through Evolve, the Downtown Alliance works with other organizations to move the city towards the progressive vision established in Imagine Austin. Evolve will be a key partner as our community provides feedback on CodeNEXT. 



The Downtown Alliance led an extensive public engagement campaign to give a voice to those in support of lowering I-35 through downtown. TxDOT is planning a dramatic overhaul of the I-35 corridor, and will be deciding to either raise or lower the lanes. We advocated for community members to submit a letter to TxDOT in support of the lowered option. The campaign generated more than 2,440 letters.






Multimodal Community Advisory Committee (MCAC)

As a member of the City of Austin’s MCAC, the Downtown Alliance represents the downtown community by analyzing and identifying transportation solutions that will help improve travel to, from and around Central Austin. In 2016, the MCAC was formed to coordinate both the community input for Capital Metro’s Project Connect and the City’s planning process for the Austin Strategic Mobility Plan.


After-Hours Concrete Installation

In November 2016, Austin City Council adopted new rules for overnight concrete pours downtown. The Downtown Alliance worked with construction industry stakeholders, downtown residents, and city staff for more than two years to find a solution that allows development to continue without disrupting residents’ and visitors’ sleep. The new regulations reflect the Downtown Alliance-brokered compromise position. They allow projects to obtain 72-hour permits for late-night concrete installation, with an 83-decibel limit before midnight, a 73-decibel limit from midnight to 6 a.m., and a different type of permit for special circumstances such as a mat slab, which requires continuous pouring of concrete for structural integrity. Sound is measured 75 feet from the pump or truck.