Located in Central Texas, Austin is the capital of the state of Texas, the Lone Star State. The city dates back to the 1830s, when the first Anglo-American settlers arrived in the area, then part of Mexico. In 1837, settlers founded the village of Waterloo on the banks of the Colorado River, the first permanent settlement in the area. By 1839, Waterloo would adopt the name Austin and the frontier town would become the capital of the Republic of Texas. The City is named for Stephen F. Austin, the “Father of Texas.”
Home to the University of Texas flagship campus, Austin is known for its eclectic live-music scene centered around country, latin, blues and rock and is home to renown festivals like Austin City Limits (ACL) and South by South West Festival (SXSW).
Its many parks and lakes are popular for hiking, biking, swimming and boating. South of the city, Formula One's Circuit of the Americas raceway has hosted the United States Grand Prix.
Texas State Capitol
Completed in 1888 in Downtown Austin, the Texas State Capitol is home of the offices and chambers of the Texas Legislature and the Office of the Governor. The capitol has 360,000 square feet (33,000 m2) of floor space, more than any other state capitol building, and rests on 2.25 acres (0.91 ha) of land. (Source: Wikipedia)
Facts about the Texas State Capitol building:
- The Texas State Capitol is the largest in gross square footage of all state capitols.
- Considered such a beautiful example of late 19th century architecture, there are laws prohibiting obstructing the view of the building.
- The Texas State Capitol is the second largest Capitol in the entire nation; second only to the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. Standing at 308 feet tall the Texas State Capitol is 19 feet taller than the United States Capitol, which is only 289 feet tall.
- The spiral staircase leading to the dome lantern is one of the original staircases.
- "Sunset red" granite was quarried for the external structural walls a mere 50 miles from the construction site.
- On the grounds are 17 monuments, including monuments of Confederate Soldiers, Volunteer Firemen, and a replica of the Statue of Liberty.
a city full of culture, music, good food and fun facts.
Whether you are visiting Austin or thinking about making it your new home, there are a few fun facts to know about this city. Here are a few of them:
- The city’s unofficial slogan, “Keep Austin Weird,” originated with local librarian Red Wassenich, who uttered the phrase when he called in to a local radio show in 2000. Since then, the slogan has become a fixture on bumper stickers, store signs, and elsewhere around town.
- In addition to “Live Music Capital of the World,” Austin is known as the “Violet Crown City,” a reference to the purplish light cast over the hills on winter evenings.
- So many tech firms have come to town that Austin now has the nickname “Silicon Hills.” IBM kicked things off in 1967, followed by Texas Instruments, Motorola, 3M, Dell computers, and numerous others. Nowadays, Austin is one of the leading sites for venture capital funding in the nation.
- Austin has the largest urban bat population of any city in the country. Every summer, more than 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats roost beneath the Congress Avenue Bridge, flying out at night to feast upon 10,000 to 20,000 pounds of insects.
- Austin’s food truck scene started in the early ‘90s with a few family-owned taco carts on South Lamar Street. The movement took off in the 2000s, and between 2006 and 2011 the number of mobile vendor licenses tripled. Today, there are close to 2,000 food trucks throughout the city.
- It’s the fastest growing city in the U.S., with a population spike of 3% in the past year.
- It’s home to America’s only Formula 1 race, the United States Grand Prix, held every year at the Circuit of the Americas located southwest of the city.