AUSTIN (KXAN) — The trailhead at Auditorium Shores reopened to the public Wednesday following the completion of a renovation project that took about five months longer than anticipated.
The newly-completed project includes an expanded parking lot, new bathrooms, wider trails and better access for bicyclists and pedestrians.
The improvements were supposed to be completed by June, but a handful of issues kept that portion of the park from opening on time. The city then planned to have it open by Oct. 30, but problems with the new bathroom facility kept that from happening.
“The remaining work on the restroom building is because of unforeseen conditions related to the adjoining wastewater line which had to be repaired in order to activate the facility,” Susan Rankin, executive director of the Trail Foundation, told KXAN in October. She said there were also “minor items related to final inspection” that had to be addressed.
The city reconstructed the parking lot to address environmental issues and keep rain runoff from draining directly into Lady Bird Lake.
“The way it works is the storm water is filtered through rain water gardens,” Rankin said, “so by the time it hits the lake the oil and things like that are filtered out.”
Money for the project also went to additional landscaping and more lighting in the park. Work was also done to restore the shoreline in that area.
The $2.2 million renovation was funded partially through a Texas Parks and Wildlife grant and the other half coming from the city. The Trail Foundation also chipped in $350,000. Stump said in October the cost of the delays were within budget.
Event Closures: Due to events at the Long Center on Wednesday and Thursday, Riverside Dive is closed between South 1st Street and Lamar Boulevard. The Auditorium Shores parking area will be accessible using the northbound road access road on South 1st Street.