The South Central Waterfront Initiative promotes a vision and a set of recommendations, tools, and programs to guide redevelopment for this area over the next 20 years. The goal is to ensure that, as the area inevitably changes, every increment of change will contribute to making a great new district that:

  • Establish a lively, safe, and attractive pedestrian environment.
  • Expand open spaces and create great public places.
  • Enhance connections to and along the waterfront.
  • Include 20% new housing units as affordable.

The South Central Waterfront encompasses 118 acres, comprised of 32 separate private properties, directly across the lake from downtown. Here is a map of the area.

The South Central Waterfront Vision Framework Plan

The City Council adopted the South Central Waterfront Vision Framework Plan (South Central Waterfront Plan) as an amendment to Imagine Austin in June 2016. The South Central Waterfront Plan sets a path to create a districtwide network of connected green streets, parks, trails and public open spaces (approximately 20 new acres), as well as achieving 20% new affordable housing units (approximately 530 units). 

SCW Vision Framework Plan (Final Plan as adopted)

Appendices to the SCW Vision Framework Plan

SCW Preliminary Project & Financing Plan (PDF) -- Added Dec. 2021

Bringing the Vision to Life

The South Central Waterfront Plan recommends a series of implementation measures including development of regulations, adoption of innovative financial tools, fostering public-private partnerships, leveraging the single city property at One Texas Center for affordable housing, and capital improvement investments in infrastructure.  A newly formed South Central Waterfront Advisory Board is working with staff and stakeholders to provide recommendations to the City Council on implementation. Click Implementing the Plan to learn more.

Awards and Recognition

2017 Award for Excellence in Sustainability | American Planning Association’s Sustainable Communities Division

2017 Honor Award for Planning & Analysis | American Society of Landscape Architects, Texas Chapter

2016 Plan of the Year | American Planning Association, Texas Central Chapter

History of Waterfront Planning

Planning studies for the waterfront that date back 30 years have consistently called for harmonious development which respects the tremendous asset of the lake and shoreline. View the Past Waterfront Planning page for more information on the history and past planning efforts of the waterfront.

Stay Informed

Stay up to date on South Central Waterfront news and events by using the following resources: