Republic Square

Now Open

Republic Square is an active, urban green space grounded in rich history that traces back to the birth of our city. The newly renovated square will be a place unlike any in Austin with daily programming, modern amenities, and a full-service café.

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Latest Updates

October 9th, 2017

Visit the square and check out these events!

Now that the square is open, we have these exciting events coming up in the park!

Free ACL Shuttle Service, October 6-8 and 13-15

There is no parking at Zilker Park for the ACL Festival, so take advantage of the Complimentary Official Festival Shuttles provided by ACL Fest instead! Board at Republic Square and you’ll be dropped off on Barton Springs Road outside the Barton Springs West Entrance. The shuttles begin at Republic Square at 10:30am and make their final return at 11pm each day of the festival. 

First Saturday at the Market, October 7

SFC Farmers’ Markets First Saturdays is a new series of market days featuring new vendors, live music, SFC merchandise giveaways, and activities for the whole family. Join us Saturday, October 7 for this special edition of the SFC Farmers’ Market Downtown. 

Archer’s Downtown Wheelchair Challenge, October 20

Explore downtown Austin from a wheelchair! Join Archer Hadley and Mayor Steve Adler at Republic Square for Archer’s Downtown Wheelchair Challenge. Participants will be fitted for manual wheelchairs and then roll away to spend their day at work or experience downtown Austin. All chairs will be returned by1:00pm. Downtown businesses and organizations like GSD&M, Bank of America, City Hall, and many others will be represented. Register here to participate! 

AIDS Walk Austin, October 29

In its 30th year, AIDS Walk Austin returns to Republic Square on October 29, 2017, from 11:30am - 3:30 pm. Benefiting AIDS Services of Austin and 9 sharing agencies, this event brings together people (and pets) from all walks of life!

AIDS Walk Austin attracts 900+ people annually for an afternoon of celebration and remembrance of those affected by HIV. Begin the day with a festival in the park featuring live music, food trucks, vendors, and activities, and then walk the 2.5 mile route that uses the Capitol as a round-about. 

The importance of this event is immeasurable. Every step that is taken decreases stigma and creates a step up for a person in need. Do something good for your sole and walk to build healthier futures for Central Texans.



October 6th, 2017

Republic Square Reopens After Year-Long Renovation Project

Republic Square reopened to the public yesterday after a more than year-long project to renovate the park. Republic Square, located at 4th and Guadalupe Streets, is an active, urban green space grounded in rich history that traces back to the birth of Austin. Through a unique public-private partnership, the Downtown Austin Alliance (Downtown Alliance), the Austin Parks Foundation and the City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department have partnered to provide a renovated, vibrant communal space with daily programming and modern amenities.

“We invite all of Austin—locals and visitors—to experience Republic Square and enjoy this beautiful green space in the heart of downtown,” Dewitt Peart, president and chief executive officer of the Downtown Alliance, said. “The Downtown Austin Allinance, Austin Parks Foundation, the City of Austin and many other supporters of the park are proud of the efforts to restore this Austin treasure.”

The official grand opening of Republic Square is planned for spring 2018, at which point the park will offer more activities, public restrooms and a full service café.

The Downtown Alliance is responsible for the operations, management and programming of the park. The operating plan—recently approved by City Council—includes programmed activities, such as farmers’ markets, fitness and education events, live music and movies in the park.

The Sustainable Food Center’s Farmers’ Market will return to the square in the promenade along W. 4th St. Additionally, the following events will take place in the coming weeks at Republic Square:

Austin City Limits Music Festival Shuttles – Oct. 6-8 and Oct. 13-15 

Archer’s Challenge – Oct. 20, 2017, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. 

AIDS Walk Austin – Oct. 29, 2017, 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

September 26th, 2017

New Signs Installed in the Square

New signs were installed throughout Republic Square last week in anticipation of the opening later this month. New benches and railings were also installed on the Guadalupe Street side to better accommodate the Capital Metro bus stop along that side of the square.

In the next couple weeks, the construction fencing will be removed and portions of the park will open to the public. The large central lawn will ready for use later this fall. We will celebrate the official grand opening in spring 2018, at which point the square will offer full programming, public restrooms and a café serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Upon its reopening, the Downtown Alliance will operate, manage, and program the square.


Features

  • Info

    Image by Miró Rivera Architect

    Full-Service Café

    The newly renovated square will feature a full-service café in an urban outdoor setting. Surrounding the restaurant, visitors will enjoy ample seating and relaxing landscaping. The café building will also house well-maintained public restrooms.

  • New Public Artwork

    Blackbird, a stunning, large-scale stone sculpture will sit among a grove of trees in the new Republic Square. This family-friendly artwork was commissioned by Art in Public Places and designed by local artist Holly Young-Kincannon of Kincannon Studios.

  • Info

    Image by Michael Knox

    Sustainable Food Center’s Downtown Farmers’ Market

    The Sustainable Food Center’s Saturday Farmers’ Market will continue to operate on W 4th Street and the adjacent Federal Courthouse Plaza during construction. After the square reopens, the market will move into the square in the promenade along W. 4th Street.

  • Info

    Image by Design Workshop

    Reserve the Square

    Host your event at downtown’s newest outdoor event venue. With capacity from 50 to 3500, Republic Square has options to suite your next special event. Contact us for more information about hosting an event in the square.

  • Info

    Image by Michael Knox

    Daily Programming and Featured Events

    The new Republic Square is a neighborhood meeting place. It is an active urban green space for downtown visitors, local residents, and nearby employees to enjoy. Republic Square will feature daily activities and regular events – with something for everyone!

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Getting There

422 Guadalupe Street, Austin TX 78701

The Story

  • Info

    Birds Eye Map of Austin, photograph, 1887; (accessed May 11, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Austin History Center, Austin Public Library

    Austin’s Birthplace

    Edwin Waller’s original design of Austin consisted of a grid with a central square (Capitol Square) and four smaller, secondary “public squares.” The first 306 lots of the city of Austin were sold at auction in 1839 under the Auction Oaks. In 1888, the squares were named Brush, Hamilton (now Republic), Bell (now Wooldridge), and Hemphill (no longer a public square).

  • Info

    Douglass, Neal. [Walker's Austex Chili Company], photograph, 1948; (accessed March 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Austin History Center, Austin Public Library.

    Roots of TexMex Cuisine

    The soul of Republic Square is food, and that food is TexMex. In early years, vendors would sell tamales and candies in the square. Walker’s Austex Chile Company, located near the square, employed many people from the local neighborhoods. The food tradition continues today with the Sustainable Food Center’s Downtown Farmers’ Market, held each Saturday morning at the square.

  • Info

    Image # AR.2009.047(012). Jesse Herrera Photography Collection

    Guadalupe Park

    By 1905, the neighborhood around Republic Square largely identified with Austin’s Mexican population. Three churches were established near the square, including Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church. Locals at that time would call it “Guadalupe Park.” The square often hosted concerts and dances, church fundraisers, and the annual celebration of Mexico’s independence, Diez y Seis de Septiembre.

  • Info

    Image by Unknown

    1976: The Bicentennial

    After decades as a parking lot, Republic Square returned to its original purpose in 1976 as part of the U.S. Bicentennial celebration. The current name, Republic Square, was chosen then as a tribute to the Republic of Texas.

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