Stratford Parking lot will have seasonal pay stations on weekends, holidays, and special events beginning May 6th 

Stratford Parking lot will have seasonal pay stations on weekends, holidays, and special events beginning May 6th 

Zilker Pay Stations Completed 

The Austin Parks and Recreation Department will continue to implement automated parking pay stations for parking areas within Zilker Metropolitan Park as of March 27, 2023. This means that the parking lots near Stratford Dr., north of the Zilker Botanical Garden, and the south Barton Springs Pool lot near Azie Morton Road will now have pay stations like the rest of the park. The automated parking stalls for these final parking areas have been activated as of May 1, 2023. 

Seasonal paid parking at all other Zilker Park areas began on March 1, 2023, and will continue through Labor Day. Payment is only required on Saturdays, Sundays, holidays, and special events per the current policy. Beginning May 1, the fee will be $7 (up from $5) for parking all day or partial days during the hours of 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. 

What does this mean for Garden Visitors and Members? 

The gravel parking lot located at 2228 Stratford Dr. is used as the Garden’s overflow parking during special events, free days, and weekends. Garden visitors who purchase admission can request a parking pass and do not need to pay to park. Garden gate attendants at either the Barton Springs gate or Stratford gate entrances can provide parking passes upon arrival. Parking passes must be placed in a visible spot inside the vehicle’s windshield as soon as received. These passes are only good for the date of visitation and cannot be copied or replicated. Unfortunately, the Garden cannot refund parking once paid so be sure to retrieve a parking pass prior to paying for parking. 

Free Zilker Shuttle Service 

There will also be a seasonal free weekend and holiday shuttle service every 20 minutes to Zilker Metropolitan Park from the One Texas Center parking garage, 505 Barton Springs Rd. It is anticipated to run Memorial day through Labor Day, specific dates to be confirmed in the coming weeks. 

The Zilker Shuttle runs every Saturday and Sunday, and during Memorial Day, the 4th of July and Labor Day holidays from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Park in the One Texas Center parking garage, 505 Barton Springs Rd. Parking ticket must be validated by the shuttle driver. 

The drop-off location is at Zilker Playground/Barton Springs Spillway, a two-minute walk to Barton Springs Pool. No dogs or other pets allowed on the shuttle. For more information, visit AustinTexas.gov/Zilker

Background 

In 2016, the Parks and Recreation Department began installing pay stations to increase efficiency in Zilker Park parking lots by reducing both traffic congestion and operating expenses. After installation at most parking areas, the Department paused installation before the parking lot at Azie Morton Road and Stratford Road. Since that time, parking challenges in these two lots have increased, leading to a need for consistency across the park for parking. 
  
The Department worked closely with concerned residents and partner organizations before finalizing the process that began in 2016. With the completion of the automated parking station implementation across Zilker Park, community members can expect more consistent rules and enforcement. In addition, funds from parking support improvements at Zilker Park, such as safety initiatives, lighting and future electric vehicle stations.