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I am back on the mainland and blogging from Seattle with South Austin in the rearview mirror. Don't worry Virgin Island fans, I will most certainly be back in the Caribbean for visits if not full-time. And I'm sure St. Thomas will creep it's way into many future posts. For now, it's all about living in the Pacific Northwest!

February 26, 2013

South Lamar - Past, Present, Future?

No matter where you live in Austin, it's a pretty safe bet that you have been stuck in traffic on South Lamar at some point.  

Me? I live on Lamar. I work on Lamar.  

Day after day, I watched as my neighbors had their final sales, loaded up what was left, and finally drove away. With little fanfare, the trucks came in and tore it all down (or up). 

The eclectic shops of South Lamar Plaza are no more. The drugstore is still close by but, no more double-drive-through Thundercloud, no more Casa G's happy hours and no more Bitch'in Threads. At least I've still got Maudi's! 

The incessant noise and dust have just begun and with the start of the Hanover project, has gotten worse. While sipping coffee this morning, I tried to remember what it was like just a few short months ago. I am all for change and honestly, you might as well do it all at once. But I am saddened that soon I will have only a five story building to look at instead of trees and train. 

You can find more information about the South Lamar Plaza project here. Information about the Hanover South Lamar project in this Austin American Statesman article.  But wait, there's more. The Gibson Flats are well under way and 704 at the Spoke has kicked off. What a picture the Broken Spoke makes in the middle of all that "progress"! 

Though with all these changes come sadness... I will finish this post with a quick list of things that bring me hope for the future of South Lamar (still not gonna call it "SoLa"... just can't). 
  • South Lamar Plaza plans for a 12,000 SqFt grocery store (there hasn't been one here since Fiesta Foods was located where Alamo South is)!
  • Odd Duck is getting a brick and mortar upgrade from their previous food truck!
  • There will be competition for High Ball and their incredibly overpriced and underwhelming service!
  • Alamo South gets to stay and gets a makeover!
  • The added parking garage at Gibson Flats might alleviate some of the neighborhood overflow!
  • Additional cafes with patio seating (and hopefully doggy friendly)?!
  • Increased property value!
Most of these projects are scheduled to complete in 2014 and Alamo will re-open long before that. Maybe then I'll get my car detailed while Izee and I sip an expresso and nosh on something yummy.



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