Filipa Rodrigues

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Geographic Representation
6:00 am
Tue January 8, 2013

Infographic: How Austin's City Council Districts Will Get Drawn

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

In November, voters approved a historic change to Austin’s form of government.

For most of Austin’s modern history, the city council has been elected citywide, or at-large. With the passage of Proposition 3 last year, voters approved a change to geographic representation, where an independent citizens commission will create 10 city council districts.

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Downtown
9:36 am
Wed January 2, 2013

Downtown's New Post Office Opens Today

The post office at Fifth Street and Guadalupe in happier days.
Wikimedia Commons user WhisperToMe, http://bit.ly/ZUddgq

Austin's new downtown post office is opening today at 823 Congress Ave.

The new 7,118-square-foot postal facility will provide full postal retail services and house PO boxes for postal customers with ZIP codes 78767 and 78768. The hours of operation will remain the same: 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, and closed on Saturday and Sunday.

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Austin
12:18 pm
Tue January 1, 2013

Go Green With Your Evergreen: Christmas Tree Recycling

Most City of Austin customers can place their trees curbside.
flickr.com/jonny2love

As we wrap up the holiday season, the Christmas decorations will soon head to into storage.

The City of Austin is encouraging residents to recycle their live Christmas trees. If you have curbside collection, just put the tree there by 6:30 a.m. on your trash day. Make sure all decorations are removed. Trees over six feet should be cut in half.

If you live in an apartment or somewhere else where you don’t get curbside collection, you can drop trees off at Zilker Park this weekend or next weekend.

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Austin
10:21 am
Tue January 1, 2013

Commitment Day 5K Street Closures

Road closures for Commitment Day 5K.
City of Austin

The Commitment Day 5K is taking place in downtown Austin this morning. The race starts at 10 a.m. and is expected to last until 12 p.m.

South 1st Street will be closed from Barton Springs Road to Cesar Chavez Street. Cesar Chavez Street will be closed from Lavaca Steet to Mopac (Loop 1).

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Austin
3:01 pm
Mon December 31, 2012

Free Ways to Get Home Safely This New Year's

If you drink tonight, please don't drive.
Caleb Miller for KUT News

Even though it’s Monday, it’s still a “No Refusal” weekend for Austin drivers.

From 9 p.m. through 5 a.m., the Austin Police Department will ask suspected drunk drivers to take a mandatory breath test. And if drivers don't agree, police will ask for a subpoena for DWI suspects' blood.  The Austin Police Department says 23 people were arrested for DWI on Sunday.

In an effort to keep Austin’s roads safe, Capital Metro and APD have partnered to provide free Cap Metro services from 6 p.m. until 3 a.m. Buses will run on a regular schedule tonight, but will be reduced to Sunday level service on New Year’s Day. For more information, visit capmetro.org.

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Austin
1:15 pm
Mon December 31, 2012

What You Need to Know About 'Austin's New Year 2013' Event (Update)

Last year's fireworks show over Lady Bird Lake.
flickr.com/redcti

Update: Despite some rain in the forecast for this evening, the City of Austin’s New Year’s Eve event at Auditorium Shores is a go. At least for now.

The city says as long as the skies stick to rain and drizzle and not high winds and thunderstorms… the live music, activities and fireworks will happen.

“Bring your ponchos, bring your umbrellas, bring a lawn chair. But if it’s a little drizzle-y we will hopefully still have an event and still have some fireworks for everybody to enjoy," City of Austin spokesperson Samantha Park says.

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Downtown
11:45 am
Fri December 7, 2012

Photos: Inside Downtown Austin’s New Federal Courthouse

The Jury Assembly room features natural light and colorful artwork.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

A new United States Courthouse for the Western District of Texas opened in downtown Austin this week.

The decidedly modern space, designed by Mack Scogin Merrill Elam Architects, is a departure from the stodgy, unimaginative architecture associated with government buildings. The 230,000 square foot building is stark, clean and geometric on the outside. Inside, wood tones warm the courtrooms, natural light works its way into common areas, and a stunning piece of artwork inside the entryway provides more color.

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Terrorism
2:17 pm
Fri November 30, 2012

Photos: Urban Shield, Austin’s Terrorism Preparedness Exercise

Austin Fire Department repsonders rescue a "victim" as a part of terrorism-response exercise Urban Shield.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Today, Austin began the first exercises of Urban Shield, a full-scale regional preparedness training.

Over the next forty hours, Central Texas public safety agencies will assess the region's ability to successfully respond to and manage multiple terrorist events and emergencies throughout Travis, Hays and Williamson Counties. It’s a massive event with over a dozen scenarios; earlier this month, the City of Austin was looking for 1,000 volunteer “victims” to take part in the demonstrations.

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Thanksgiving
7:20 pm
Wed November 21, 2012

Photos: Behind the Scenes at HEB's Annual Feast of Sharing

Some 14,000 dinners are served: Food is plated at H-E-B's annual Feast of Sharing.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

The H-E-B Feast of Sharing returned to the The Palmer Events Center last night.

Nearly 14,000 meals were cooked and served last night for the annual free Thanksgiving meal. Throughout the evening, the number of people attending the feast was steady and flowing.

H-E-B's Tamra Jones said that "without the amazing help of the community and all the volunteers, this event wouldn't be the same. You feel the community coming together to make this happen."

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formula 1
12:02 pm
Sat November 17, 2012

Photos: Austin Fan Fest

An artist works on a F1-emblazoned kiosk at Austin Fan Fest.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

The Formula 1 Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas isn't the only big event this weekend: event organizers have also launched the Austin Fan Fest this race weekend. Located in the Warehouse District downtown, the festival features music, food and drink, and lots of displays and promotions for Formula 1 gearheads.

Photographer Filipa Rodrigues took in the scene Friday evening for KUT News. Take a look at her photos, posted to KUT's Flickr page.

Formula 1
4:15 pm
Thu November 15, 2012

Photos: Austin-Bergstrom Busy, But Not Overwhelmed, by F1

Car service drivers await their arrivals at ABIA as F1 roars into town.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Austin’s airport certainly looks a lot different from a normal day. There’s additional security, several car service drivers, and a bunch of people in yellow shirts speaking a bunch of different languages.

But it’s not the insane crush many expected for Formula 1.

Despite the anticipated arrival of 18,000 visitors today, “things seem to be running fairly smoothly,” says Jim Halbrook with Austin Bergstrom International Airport (ABIA). “We’ve got customer service representatives throughout the terminal helping people find their way, helping people find their ground transportation." 

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Formula 1
2:58 pm
Thu November 15, 2012

Video: What Does Austin Really Think of F1?

While the Formula 1 Grand Prix’s Austin debut has inspired excitement among racing fans, many Austinites are wary. Since the announcement, questions over public investment in the race and the Circuit of the Americas track have largely dominated the discussion over F1.

Promoters initially asked the city to pay millions into a trust fund to cover fees associated with the event, before private investors offered up the cash themselves. Brinksmanship between local promoters and F1 bosses nearly derailed the project as well.

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Texas
4:11 pm
Tue July 3, 2012

Video: Inside a Fireworks Stand

Sales started somewhat slowly at American Fireworks, but sellers expect them to pick up closer to the Fourth.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Plan on shooting some fireworks off this July 4th?

KUT News recently traveled out to a fireworks stand along Highway 290 to see how sellers were faring. Sales are up from last year, when a ban on fireworks was in effect, but American Fireworks proprietor Keith Coober noted the challenges in a business where you can sales only come on the Fourth and New Year’s.

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Austin
12:59 pm
Tue June 19, 2012

Video and Pictures: Austin's 2012 Juneteenth Parade

A couple younger participants in today's Juneteenth parade.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Thousands of residents lined Chicon Street this morning to celebrate Juneteenth, when the Emancipation Proclamation freeing slaves came to be enforced in Texas.

Nathan Robertson was one participant. He’s lived in East Austin all his life. Robertson says it’s important for him to acknowledge the historical importance of the day, and that the parade offers a chance to catch up with old friends.

“We see people we haven’t seen in a while because of work and church and school,” Robertson says. “You know, you get in your routine and don’t see people. But we come out here and we can see people we haven’t seen in a year.”

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ROT Rally
5:08 pm
Fri June 8, 2012

ROT Riders Silence Engines in Honor of Fallen Service Members

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Republic of Texas Rally riders shared a moment of silence this morning, in a memorial service honoring military and law enforcement members before gearing up for the day's ride.  

The ceremony took place at the Cook-Walden home in Pflugerville. After a blessing of the bikes, riders revved up their engines and took to the highway for this weekend's events.   

Homelessness
4:03 pm
Thu May 24, 2012

Voices From Wooldridge Square: As Park Closes, Homeless Austinites Wonder What's Next

Woolridge regular Ken and his dog.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

The City of Austin is planning to temporarily close Wooldridge Square Park downtown for landscape renovations. The measure will affect several homeless people who call the park home.

KUT News recently spoke with a few Wooldridge regulars who spend most of their days there.

You can listen to interviews with "Ken," "Bruce" and "Michael" by KUT News  interns Mario Jacinto and Filipa Rodrigues above.

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Religion
4:51 pm
Tue May 15, 2012

Help a Sister Out: Protesters Call for Vatican to Support, Not Censure, U.S. Nuns

Supporters rallied in defense of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious this afternoon.
Photo by Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

A small band of Austinites braved the rain this afternoon to rally in support of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, one of the largest organizations of Catholic nuns in the U.S.

Eight protesters assembled outside of St. Mary's Cathedral in downtown Austin, holding signs reading "In solidarity with Women Religious" and "I stand with LCWR." Similar protests were scheduled in other cities today, including Dallas and New York.

On April 18, the Vatican issued a report chastising the LCWR for an insufficiently hardline stance on homosexuality that places it “outside the Church’s teaching,” and “a prevalence of certain radical feminist themes incompatible with the Catholic faith.”

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Arts and Culture
3:16 pm
Thu May 3, 2012

A 'Big Ass Canvas,' and a Cause

A project asked random Austinites to paint on a "Big Ass Canvas" today, with the results to be auctioned off for charity.
Photo by Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Outside Tyler’s clothing store on The Drag, anyone could try their hand at painting on a “Big Ass Canvas.”

Big Ass Canvas offered its first community canvas painting today, outside the Guadalupe Street store. The project encourages passersby to pick up a paintbrush and help fill a large canvas (8.5 by 6 feet). It was launched a week and a half ago by Zach Horvath and Travis Chafin.

Aside from the action on The Drag, canvases will also be available at spots on South Congress and the pedestrian bridge over Lady Bird Lake, as well as at a final celebratory event. Then, the four canvases will be auctioned off to raise money for Explore Austin, a mentoring program with an emphasis on the outdoors.

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