2016 Austin City Limits Tips and Reminders

Mayor Steve Adler, City of AustinThe Austin Parks and Recreation Department welcomes visitors to the 2016 Austin City Limits Music Festival, September 30 – October 2, andOctober 7-9, 2016. The 15th anniversary of the ACL Music Festival takes place on a 46-acre portion of Zilker Metropolitan Park, the crown jewel of Austin’s public green spaces.

The northern portion of Zilker Metropolitan Park, known to Austinites as the Great Lawn, is closed September 19 through October 21.  This includes 11 days of festival set up, 2 event weekends, a week to remove staging, and typically at least one week for the annual Parks and Recreation Department’s post-event maintenance which is dependent on weather conditions.

For information on Austin City Limits Music Festival street closures, area maps, and transportation/parking options, please visit:

Citywide and Festival Attendee Reminders

Festival Attendees:

  • Shuttles to the festival are FREE, or bike to the event.www.aclfestival.com
  • There is NO parking at the park, and extensive restricted parking areas in outlying areas. Festival attendees should not drive to the park.
  • Check the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page and get other festival related information at: www.aclfestival.com.

Zilker Park Access:

  • Most of Zilker Metropolitan Park will be accessible prior to the festival, and between event weekends, from Monday, October 3 through Thursday, October 6.
    • This includes the Rugby Field, Polo Field, Zilker Playscape, Barton Springs Pool, Zilker Botanical Garden and Austin Nature and Science Center.
  • Park users can expect a high number of people in the park during festival weekends.
  • All of Zilker Metropolitan Park and the Zilker Botanical Gardens will be closed to the public during the six festival days only.  An interactive map can be found at:  www.austintexas.gov/parkevents.
  • Barton Springs Pool – Southgate Parking Lot will be open during the festival weekends and is reserved for pool users only.
    • Access to Barton Springs Pool will be via Barton Hills Drive, Rabb Road or Bluebonnet Road to Robert E. Lee.
    • There will be NO ACCESS to Barton Springs Road and Robert E. Lee.
    • ADA pool parking is available in the Barton Springs Pool – Southgate Parking Lot, or first-come first-served on the north side via the northbound MoPac frontage at Andrew Zilker Road.  Proper ADA tags must be displayed prior to approaching the area.

Alternative Park Use Areas:

  • Vic Mathias and Auditorium Shores east and middle lawns will both be open at all times during the festival period.The off leash area will also be available.
  • Butler Park is also open during both ACL Music Festival weekends for park patrons.
  • A park directory is available at:  www.austintexas.gov/parks.

Parking and Traffic:

  • Barton Springs Road changes will again be implemented for the 2016 year to help further reduce the number of vehicles impacting and causing safety concerns for patron pedestrian foot traffic entering the Festival.
  • Barton Springs road will be open for local access only for residents, business staff and patrons, and festival attendees from Lamar to Sterzing.  All non-local traffic will be directed out of the area from Sterzing, to Toomey and Toomey to Lamar.
  • There is NO ACCESS further west from Sterzing to Robert E. Lee as in previous years.  The festival will be providing a free shuttle for festival attendees at Republic Square Park.
  • There will be a designated drop off zone on Sterzing Lane between Barton Springs and Toomey Road, on Stephen F. Austin Drive under MoPac Bridge, and on Lee Barton Drive between Lamar Boulevard and Riverside Drive.  Citations will be actively issued to transportation networking companies, and other drop offs in unapproved areas.
  • Public safety personnel will be routinely patrolling and towing in the affected areas.

Road Closures

  • Street closures will occur starting at 12:01am Friday through earlyMonday morning of each festival weekends.
  • Motorists should expect delays around the Zilker Park/Barton Springs Road area and throughout downtown.
  • All commuters are to expect higher volume of traffic in the general park area during the overall festival period.Enclosed please find the highlighted street closures next to Zilker Metropolitan Park
  • On event days:
  • Barton Springs Road from Sterzing Street to Rollingwood Drive.
  • Stratford Drive from Barton Springs Road to Nature Center Trail.
  • Barton Springs Road/Lou Neff to Stratford Drive (right lane westbound).


Health and Safety Reminders:

  • The festival is a smoke free event site and patrons may only smoke outside the event grounds on the street.
  • Know your location, where you enter the festival, and plan ahead to get home.  Use the free shuttle from Republic Square Park to ensure a quick and safe ride from downtown.
  • Wear comfortable shoes, clothing and bring personal protective items such as hats and sunglasses.
  • Drink plenty of water and stay hydrated, there are water filling stations throughout the festival.
  • Apply gel or lotion based sunscreen and insect repellent (non-aerosol type).
  • Read all of the festival information/FAQs.

In an effort to safeguard the safety and quality of life of Austin residents, the Public Assembly Code Enforcement (PACE) team will be checking that all vendors, merchants and property owners are in compliance with municipal safety codes, including having the required permits during the festival.   PACE will canvass the routes leading to Zilker Park this week and throughout the event. Those found operating without proper permits will be required to close down their operation for the remainder of the event.

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