3.0 out of 10

East Congress

Ranked 55th best neighborhood in Austin
30.210946504199 -97.7632095864162
Great for
  • Parking
  • Peace & Quiet
  • Safe & Sound
  • Cost of Living
  • Resale or Rental Value
Not great for
  • Childcare
  • Medical Facilities
  • Nightlife
  • Schools
  • Clean & Green
Who lives here?
  • Singles
  • Students
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Professionals

Reviews

2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 1/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
2yrs+

"Affordable slice of suburbia sandwiched between Rt 71 and I-35"

Ranch-style houses, tree-lined streets, and easy access to I-35 and Rt. 71 are the best this neighborhood has to offer. Another bright spot is the 4-acre green space cared for by local residents called Battle Bend Park, where visitors will find a playground, picnic tables, barbecue pits, and basketball courts.

East Congress is very car-centric. Bike lanes in this neighborhood take riders across several major roads and highways (steep uphill on the ride toward downtown), making a bicycle commute slightly dangerous and stressful.

Essentially, this neighborhood is a little slice of suburbia sandwiched between the Rt. 71 corridor to the airport (lots of hotels & motels for travelers), and major interstate, I-35. Not much going on here, and not too picturesque, but it’s a quick drive from here to other parts of the city!
Pros
  • Community-maintained park
  • Trees
  • Cheap housing
  • Convenient access to thoroughfares
  • Close to Hwy 71
Cons
  • Almost no nightlife
  • Few restaurants and shops
  • Industrial area
  • Not much personality
Recommended for
  • Professionals
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Nothing to do and no personality to speak of, but its convenient and affordable"

Sometimes, we all find ourselves in positions to make pretty hefty trade-offs in efforts to find solid middle grounds. Living in East Congress, for the right person, could be either the best or worst of both worlds.

Off the beaten path and removed from the noise, action, and bustle of trendier, more happening parts of town, East Congress is safe, quiet, and kind of barren. Shopping is limited, and the landscape leaves a bit to be desired, consisting largely of industrial spaces and small but unattractive retail lots, like used car dealerships. Rental prices and home purchase prices come in under Austin averages, and the neighborhood attracts a broad swath of people of all ages and walks of life, but never manages to really pull together the kind of community environment similar neighborhoods often tend to do really well.

East Congress can be an affordable alternative to more hip locations, and a quiet respite from the funky noise Austin’s hotter neighborhoods tend to generate. But it does achieve this at the expense of local color and community feeling, making it feel less like a place to make a long-term home and more like a stop-gap place to land in between more interesting homes.
Pros
  • Cheap housing
  • Convenient access to thoroughfares
Cons
  • Almost no nightlife
  • Not much personality
Recommended for
  • Singles
  • Students
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Schools 2/5
2yrs+

"An inexpensive way to live off South Congress"

Some might call the East Congress neighborhood the lowly step-sibling of hip and trendy part of South Congress (SoCo) to the north, but for some, that is what they prefer about it. Located south of Ben White Boulevared from the bustle and excitement of the South Congress corridor, one can easily access the popular restaurants, clubs and shops found there. But when you feel like retreating, you can find peace and quiet in your East Congress home.

Boundaries for the East Congress neighborhood are State Highway 71/US Highway 290 to the north, East Stassney Lane to the south, South Congress Boulevard on the west and Interstate Highway 35 to the east. Its location farther south, and thus farther away from the heart of the action in the city, help keep housing prices at a more affordable level, particularly to young couples and families. Housing prices average in the $170s, and the area is dominated by moderate, older homes. The neighborhood schools are Galindo Elementary, Bedichek Middle School and Travis High School.

There is plenty of convenient shopping along Ben White Boulevard (Hwy 71), although the stores are pretty standard and lack most of Austin’s unique personality. This is a neighborhood for those who like the funky vibe of Austin, but don’t necessarily need to be immersed in it, who like the convenience of the proximity to the major highways, and who don’t mind commuting a bit.
Pros
  • Convenient access to thoroughfares
  • Cheap housing
Cons
  • Not much personality
Recommended for
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Students
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 1/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 1/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
2yrs+

"Blah"

There are some less than ideal places in Austin that I really want to encourage people to explore for living options, but then there are others that I can’t even be bothered to muster up enough energy to care about. This is one of those areas. The age range of the residents here skews pretty broad. There are just about as many children as there are adults between the ages of 20-50. The generic nature of this place probably attracts such a variety of generations, since the lack of nightlife, entertainment, culture, or general neighborhood spirit means there’s absolutely no chance in attracting any particular one kind of person. The residents are about half and half white and Hispanic, with an average household income and slightly less than average rent when compared to the rest of Austin. Educational levels vary widely too, except for the general lack of professionals and residents with advanced degrees. Housing prices are significantly lower than elsewhere in Austin, and you can either see that as an amazing opportunity to take advantage of, or a warning sign to stay away. If you don’t mind a desolate landscape of car washes, tire shops, car dealerships, and even an auto junkyard, then I say go for it. Me, it makes me want to move back to Hyde Park and trade in my Honda for a cruising bike.
Pros
  • Cheap housing
Cons
  • Almost no nightlife
  • Few restaurants and shops
  • Industrial area
Recommended for
  • Singles
  • Students
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 2/5
  • Childcare 1/5
2yrs+

"Different Face of Austin"

Directly south of Highway 71 where Austin turns into South Austin and the urban turns into the suburban, East Congress is half industrial warehouses and half residential area. Properties between 71 and Sheraton are large scale lots that house everything from concrete staining to plumbing supplies. Southbound between there and E. Stassney Ln., however, is almost entirely residential houses aside from the couple of remaining restaurants that remain this far south on S. Congress Ave. East Congress is considered plain compared to the more centralized Austin neighborhoods, but offers affordable living for families that do not want to be too close to the ruckus that Austin nightlife brings.

For the young, single and creative residents, however, this neighborhood has little to offer unless they are that desperate for cheap rent, for which they can turn to East Austin neighborhoods. Highway 71 acts as a large concrete barrier between the area and the typical Austin funk, but at the same time offers an easy route in and out of the city. The public transportation in East Congress is less than ideal, but does exist. Most residents, however, have to use a personal vehicle to get to where they need to go. Battle Bend Park is the only public green space in the area, but the industrial backdrop makes it less than appealing to the eye. Even when preferring the suburban Austin avenues, individuals and families can do better than this neighborhood.
Pros
  • Cheap housing
  • Close to Hwy 71
Cons
  • Industrial area
  • Almost no nightlife
  • Few restaurants and shops
Recommended for
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees

Best Neighborhoods to Live In

Best Cities to Live In

Tell everyone what you love about your neighborhood!

Leave a Review

Have a question?

How are schools? Is the area safe? What about public transit options?" Why not ask our community of locals!

Ask Now

Selling or Renting Your Home?

Maximize the selling price of your home by sharing what you love about your suburb to increase its appeal...

Leave a Review

Corporate Relocation Manager?

Enable your employees to share local knowledge in a private, trusted environment with those relocating... while building community.

Learn More