Austin, Texas

The capital of Texas, a major in the United States and one of the most populated cities, is Austin. This city is rich in history, culture, and tourist attractions and is an essential landmark in US politics. It is the seat of Travis County and one of the most sought-after commercial and economic hubs in the State. The city was home to proud native tribes and then became a settling ground for European missionaries and American travelers. It is a name mentioned a lot in many films and TV shows. For many cowboy enthusiasts, the name Austin represents an important milestone and landmark in the Western lifestyle. 

Geography Of Austin

Austin, texas
Aerial view of Austin, Texas.

Austin is located at the intersection between the Colorado River crossing the Balcones Escarpment. In the south-central part of Texas, it is about 80 miles northeast of San Antonio, 162 miles west of Houston, and 200 miles southeast of Dallas. The Colorado River is a major landform in the city. The river stretches through the city for about 100 miles. The river stream creates several lakes that are a vital water source for the city. 

To the east of Austin are prairies combined with limestone cliffs. The topology of Austin was always a good place for cattle and horse ranches. The city covers an area of 272 square miles along the Colorado River, being away 200 miles from the Mexican Gulf. Many parks surround the city, like McKinney Falls State Park, Lockhart State Park, Pedernales Falls State Park, and the Enchanted Rock State Natural Area. The city's entire area is about 326.51 square miles, comprising about 320 square miles of land and 6.57 square miles of water bodies. It has different elevations that range between 289 feet and 1450 feet.

Climate Of Austin

Austin climate
College students play in the snow near the University of Texas fountain and tower after a snow storm in winter in Austin. Editorial credit: University of College / Shutterstock.com

Austin's climate is subtropical, with at least 300 days of sun. It is a warm and windy city with hot summers and mild winters. Summers can be scorching, with temperatures soaring to an average of 90°F during the day and 75°F at night. This hot season lasts for 3.5 months, starting June 3 and ending September 19, with August as the hottest month. From November 26 to February 22 is the primarily moderate winter season. It lasts for 2.9 months and has an average temperature of 62°F during the day and 43°F at night, with the coldest month being January. Rain is frequent in the area all year long. May has the most rain precipitation with 3.8 inches, and July has the least rain with 1.6 inches. Snow is scarce as a year can pass with no occurrence of snow. Rainfalls are heaviest from late spring to early fall. 

History Of Austin

Austin was initially home to native tribes like the Tonkawa, Comanche, and Lipan Apaches. They made the creeks their camps and their buffalo-hunting ground. The Spanish were the first to send temporary missions to the area by the late 1700s. Then, in the 1830s, Anglo settlers chose this area as their permanent home and named their village Waterloo. As the riverside village of Waterloo, it was eyed in 1839 by scouts from the republic of Texas and then bought in August. It was chosen to be the permanent capital of the republic. It was then named after the father of the republic, Stephen F. Austin. 1840 marked the year of the incorporation when it only had 856 residents. In 1842, out of fear of a Mexican invasion, the republic moved its government to Houston. However, the citizens were determined to stand their ground and refused to give away the government's records. This action was later on called the Archive War. This action forced the government to return to Austin in 1845 and officially retain the city as the State's capital.

bullock Texas State History Museum,
Bullock Texas State History Museum in Austin. Editorial credit: GSPhotography / Shutterstock.com

The following year witnessed admitting the entire State to the US. When the Great Granite Dam construction on the Colorado River finished in 1893, Austin started seeing significant growth because it provided hydraulic power and therefore generated electricity for the area. This attracted manufacturers, investors, and business owners to the city. Seven government-funded dams then replaced the Dam. The city underwent planning in the 1950s to be a manufacturing and technology center. These plans resulted in the arrival of many tech corporate headquarters, a trend still going on to this day. Year after year, Austin became a prominent city with commercial centers, residential structures, and political activity.  

Economy Of Austin

Today, Austin is the home to many highly educated millennials who strive to make the city a leader in technology. The city has been one of the biggest technological centers in the State and the country. It is also famous for being the home to many successful music artists and was dubbed The Live Music Capital of the World. Music events and festivals have been a major contributor to the tourism sector and the economy. South by Southwest, for example, is a major event that attracts thousands of visitors every march and where more than 2,000 perform music on the 100 stages in Downtown Austin. Education is also a significant contributor. The University of Texas at Austin has been the flagship educational institution in Texas.

South by Southwest Annual music, film, and interactive conference and festival in Austin, Texas. Editorial credit: GSPhotography / Shutterstock.com

2014 to 2019, saw growth in the region and the city. 2019 recorded 3.1% GDP growth in Austin and 14.5% in the entire region. This helped rank the area 7th amongst the top 50 US metropoles. Austin has an unemployment rate of 5.1%, below the national average of 6.0%. The Sales Tax rate is 8.3% which is 1% higher than the US average. However, Income Tax Rate is 0.0% which is encouraging for the people seeking business in the city. The Austin resident has an average annual income of $32,672 which is also higher than the national average of $28,555. Because of the low unemployment rate below 4%, the Median household annual income is $55,216, which is slightly higher than the US average of $53,482.Austin is home to many technologically advanced industries like Clean Technology, Space Technology, Creative & Digital Media Technology, Data Management, Life Sciences, and other technology-based businesses. These sectors, along with the financial services industry, are the top employers in the city. 

Demographics Of Austin

Austin is constantly experiencing profound change when it comes to its population. Because of the economic growth and the city's successful planning, Austin's demographic continuously grows into a more diverse culture. From 2011 to 2016, the city was the fastest growing in the US, with a projected growth rate of 3%. Like many Texan cities, the majority of the population is becoming the recently graduated and the retiring baby boomers. Austin's entertainment facilities, music festivals, shopping, commercial centers, museums, and affordable living are why the young are attracted to live here. Whites form 48.8% of the population, followed by the Hispanics with 31.3%, the Asian community at 8.12%, and the black community at 7.39%. The other races form about 4.5% of the population, which include mixed races, Native Americans, Arabs, Native Hawaiians, and pacific islanders. 

Attractions In Austin

Austin is a diverse city. It is a place where art lovers, music fanatics, and nature enthusiast can find their spot. There are countless places to visit that represent the city's culture and history.

Texas State Capitol.
Texas State Capitol in Austin.

The first cultural and artistic landmark is the Texas Capitol. This place is free of charge for all visitors. It is considered one of the most beautiful buildings in all of Texas. A true representation of Texan and Austinian History that was filled with the military, political and cultural events that shaped the city. Congress Avenue BridgeFor art enthusiasts, the Blanton Museum of Art is an impressive structure that features more than 19,00 artistic pieces from the Renaissance period, the Roman, and the Modern American era.As for music lovers, the best and the biggest venue in town is Moody Theater. It hosts hundreds of events, music concerts, and festivals. This place is one of the reasons the city is dubbed the Live Music Capital of the World.N

ature has its fair share of local and touristic attractions. Lake Austin, Mount Bonnell, Barton Creek Greenbelt, and the Barton spring pools are the perfect place for outdoor activities, especially in the spring and summer. Hiking, biking, kayaking, or strolling through these marvelous natural bodies should be at the top of any bucket list. 

The Circuit of the Americas is a race track that hosts the Formula One United States Grand Prix, the Motorcycle Grand Prix of the Americas all year round. This is one of the major race venues in the country.

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