Update: South by Southwest Film and Music continue through the weekend.
Original Story (March 7, 4:10 p.m.): Austin’s just 24 hours away from South by Southwest’s annual Film and Interactive conferences – meaning thousands of people are arriving this moment.
In preparation, the City of Austin has announced several street closures and traffic detours beginning Friday, March 8, and running through Sunday, March 17.
- Rainey Street: Closed daily between 6 p.m. – 3 a.m., March 8–17. Traffic must enter at River Street. There will be restricted access reserved for local businesses and residents.
- East Fifth Street, from I-35 to Waller Street: Closed from March 8, 7 a.m. to March 17, 3 a.m.
- Trinity Street from Cesar Chavez Street to Fourth Street: Closed from March 8, 7 a.m. to March 17, 3 a.m. East Second and Third Streets, from San Jacinto Boulevard to Trinity Street, will also be closed during that time, and open only to local traffic.
Aside from planned street closures, there are plenty of private parties and events anticipated around downtown and just east of IH-35, which may create additional traffic delays throughout the festival. Consult the City of Austin’s map of street closures and traffic detours for updates.
Capital Metro is reinforcing its transportation throughout the 10-day festival.
Bus routes will have expanded weekend hours, more weekday frequency and several late night options. All downtown routes will be detoured along Guadalupe or Lavaca streets (except the MetroAirport Route) and Cap Metro’s Night Owl and E-Bus will have service until 3 a.m.
MetroRail, Cap Metro’s commuter rail line serving the Austin Convention Center, is also expanding service, offering:
- Extra service on Saturday, March 9 and 16
- Additional midday trips March 11-15
- Offering service every 34 minutes March 9, 11-16
The city is highly encouraging use of public transportation to avoid festival congestion.
Biking and Other Options:
In addition to being an eco-friendly alternative, biking lets SXSW attendees breeze through traffic. SXSW has a free official bike share program open to all badge types that only requires a deposit.
The above map from the city also pinpoints car-share options, pedicab depots and more.