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Old 04-06-2009, 09:11 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
20,790 posts, read 39,693,537 times
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I agree, there's definitely sprawl. If you're a relative newcomer here, or you come from somewhere where sprawl is normal, you might not notice it.

I can remember when 2222 and Mopac was the crossing of a road and a railroad, and it was way out in the country. There were just beginning to be houses built there.
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Old 04-06-2009, 09:12 PM
 
6,346 posts, read 7,405,097 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by readymade View Post
I LOVE that Austin doesn't have a major sports team. Not everyone is into sports

In Boston, I had to keep a schedule of all the Red Sox games to make sure I NEVER went out on those days unless I had too. Not only was the traffic horrible on those days but many Sox fans are COMPLETELY INSANE! I was once riding my bike at night near Fenway after a Sox game let out and it was like being stuck in a room with a bunch of sex maniacs and violent offenders. I honestly didn't think I'd get out of it alive and/or with my "virtue" intact. More than one guy tried to pull me off my bike. After that, I made sure always to know the Sox schedule since I lived right near Fenway.

I've since heard about terrible things happening to people after games. Yep, I'm very very happy about the lack of pro teams in Austin.
The same can be said for UT and its fans.

But back to the original issue, I guess the things-to-do thing is just subjective. To me, 3 hours to Houston is not a day trip, at least not when you have kids. You'd spend more time in the car than at your destination. And when I think of things to do, I think of things that you can't do everywhere. I mean, technically, going for a walk, playing bridge, and counting blades of grass are all things to do, but they don't make a place unique or exciting, KWIM?
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Old 04-06-2009, 09:16 PM
 
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To all the complainers of sprawl, I hope you don't shop at those stores or eat at those restaurants.
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Old 04-06-2009, 09:22 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
20,790 posts, read 39,693,537 times
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Well, I've done that drive to Houston for lunch and shopping with kids many times. Depends on where you're shopping and what kind of lunch you're having.

Plus, made the trip to San Antonio for the zoo and the museums many times with kids. They actually turned out to be quite the world travelers when all was said and done and they grew up.

Then there's been camping in the Hill Country, trail rides, trips to Pedernales Falls or Enchanted Rock (wait, those would technically be "going for a walk", I guess), more festivals than you can shake a stick at, Fredericksburg for the peaches or the horse races or both, BBQ day trips, some rather nice museums here in town, plus taking advantage of the offerings that UT has in the way of continuing education classes or facilities, I have a Meetup that has potlucks once a month and eats out once a month at a fairly wide variety of restaurants that Austin has to offer, there's things like Krause Springs and Blue Hole, there's theater if that's your preference, there's cooking lessons at Whole Foods or Central Market or other places if that's your interest, there's music of a variety of kinds all over town (don't stick to just 6th Street or you'll miss a lot) . . . the list goes on and on, limited, really, only by your own imagination and willingness to get up and do it.
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Old 04-06-2009, 09:25 PM
 
Location: Central Texas
20,790 posts, read 39,693,537 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by llkltk View Post
To all the complainers of sprawl, I hope you don't shop at those stores or eat at those restaurants.
How many of one kind of store do you think is necessary? How much countryside do you think is dispensable in order for you not to have to drive more than a mile or so to get to the Gap or a similar store, say?

And, no, for the most part, I pretty much don't eat at chains if I have a choice, I try to support the local businesses.
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Old 04-06-2009, 10:50 PM
 
8,240 posts, read 15,719,094 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by llkltk View Post
Where do you live mimimomx? I've got miles and miles of trees out to my house. Maybe you live in too suburban of an area.
78731, central Austin.
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Old 04-06-2009, 10:51 PM
 
8,240 posts, read 15,719,094 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by llkltk View Post
To all the complainers of sprawl, I hope you don't shop at those stores or eat at those restaurants.
I prefer to shop and eat locally, and I'm very rarely south of Mopac/290.
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Old 04-07-2009, 06:04 AM
 
Location: 78747
3,202 posts, read 5,109,500 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goaliefight View Post
I forgot to mention the music. It's a great place for seeing music. Not really my scene anymore, but Austin has plenty of music if thats what you are into.

Again, entertainment wasn't my main gripe. It was traffic and failure of the highway infrastructure to grow with the city's needs.

my suggestion: live within 3 miles of downtown like a socially responsible individual and ride your bike everywhere. There is a well ingrained bike culture here second to Portland. Schitterbahn is the sch** as well. It's south on 35 out of town about 20 minutes. We don't have a good zoo, true. It's more like an animal rescue with snaggle-tooth tigers but the SA zoo is worth it. It's no different than living in LA and going to the SD zoo. I have been to both SD and SA zoos, and SA can hold it's own quite well.
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Old 04-07-2009, 06:27 AM
 
Location: Austin
2,522 posts, read 5,399,014 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyTexan View Post
Oh there's definitely sprawl. Used to be when you took the highway there were distinct spaces of raw land, pasture between Austin, Round Rock and Georgetown. (Pflugerville doesn't stretch to I-35).
Now they all seem to blend in and it's one big city all along the highway going north.

Personally, when I talk to the locals that tell me about the "old days", I wish I had a chance to see NW Austin when it was all fields and trails, long before the mega-apartment complexes and strip malls paved it over. Sounds like living up north, especially in the northern burbs, was country ambient, even somewhat bucolic.......Though they have done the same to the south side, there are more green belts there for hiking and biking.....and they seem to have left more green spaces as well......just a shame what they have done to the north end of the metro........I would say that the hill country is better than north, but worse than south, per sprawl, as there are very constricting routes back into the city, like Bee Cave.......though the hills, for simple geographical restraints, will never sprawl too badly..........
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Old 04-07-2009, 06:42 AM
 
Location: Austin
2,522 posts, read 5,399,014 times
Reputation: 705
Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasHorseLady View Post
Well, I've done that drive to Houston for lunch and shopping with kids many times. Depends on where you're shopping and what kind of lunch you're having.

Plus, made the trip to San Antonio for the zoo and the museums many times with kids. They actually turned out to be quite the world travelers when all was said and done and they grew up.

Then there's been camping in the Hill Country, trail rides, trips to Pedernales Falls or Enchanted Rock (wait, those would technically be "going for a walk", I guess), more festivals than you can shake a stick at, Fredericksburg for the peaches or the horse races or both, BBQ day trips, some rather nice museums here in town, plus taking advantage of the offerings that UT has in the way of continuing education classes or facilities, I have a Meetup that has potlucks once a month and eats out once a month at a fairly wide variety of restaurants that Austin has to offer, there's things like Krause Springs and Blue Hole, there's theater if that's your preference, there's cooking lessons at Whole Foods or Central Market or other places if that's your interest, there's music of a variety of kinds all over town (don't stick to just 6th Street or you'll miss a lot) . . . the list goes on and on, limited, really, only by your own imagination and willingness to get up and do it.
As THL says, 6th st. is really a tourist trap.......even the t-shirt stores and pizza slice places are the same you'd see in any similar tourist ghetto........not only don't STICK to 6th....don't go there period!!!!!!! Regarding the sundry things THL mentions, that's the God's truth....each person will have a collection of "Places to go, Things to do" in Austin after 3-5 years, and they will all be as varied and unique as THL's compedium...

One proviso I'll add.....all these activities were about as numerous when Austin's population was 2/3rds what it is now......very little has been added to the mix that wasn't there 10 years ago, and there are far more people here now........my feeling is that the recent growth spurt has diluted the atmosphere in general, and contributed nothing but a mother loade more of malls, apartment complexes, and big box retail........hopefully that trend will be reversed, and growth/development will have the same uniqueness as the litany of fun places/things to do THL mentioned.....God knows the new areas won't pop up on anyone's lists..Unless shopping at HEB store #453 and going to the car wash becomes a unique "Austin thing to do"........not holding my breath about that one.....though I do hope there will be a day in the future when you can have more fun than you can shake a stick at in NW Austin, Cedar Park, or Georgetown....
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