3.5 out of 10

West Congress

30.2157815134035 -97.7729844532506
Great for
  • Cost of Living
  • Resale or Rental Value
  • Safe & Sound
  • Schools
  • Eating Out
Not great for
  • Gym & Fitness
  • Nightlife
  • Public Transport
  • Medical Facilities
  • Parking
Who lives here?
  • Families with kids
  • Professionals
  • Retirees
  • Singles
  • Gay & Lesbian

Reviews

3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 2/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"A South Austin Neighborhood on the Upswing"

The West Congress neighborhood of Austin, Texas is an area that is low-income yet family-friendly and it is seeing some new home construction that should bode well for future property values. Single family homes here run the range from $125,000 up to $400,000 for a new 4-bedroom 3-bath 2400 square foot home. It's for the most part a quiet and peaceful neighborhood with less crime than other low-cost Austin areas. It's good place for a family just starting out as it has a chance to appreciate in value with the booming population in the Austin area looking to continue for the near future.

The area is served by the Austin Independent School District, and the local schools perform fairly well in comparison to other district schools. South Congress Street, or SoCo as it is known by the locals, is the eastern border of the neighborhood so you can easily head north to downtown and other Austin attractions though traffic can be bad at rush hour. There is also public transit with the Capitol Metro and a number of good Mexican food restaurants and national chain fast food restaurants that border the neighborhood on the north and south.
Pros
  • Bordered by Congress Street
  • Affordable housing
  • Family friendly
  • Breakfast tacos!
Cons
  • Some traffic from Hwy 71
  • Far from Downtown
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Students
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 2/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 4/5
2yrs+

"Peaceful family living just outside the center of the city"

As far as lower-income, family-friendly neighborhoods go, West Congress has a lock on the situation. This is not a happening scene by any stretch, but it’s conveniently located pretty close to everything, and the ethnic diversity of the area lends itself to plenty of awesome hole-in-the-wall eateries.

Schools are okay, public transit is less than ideal, and homes are extremely affordable, especially give the relative closeness to trendier neighborhoods and downtown itself. West Congress is pretty well self-contained, too, with sufficient shopping options and plenty of places to eat.

This will probably never take off as a hipster destination, or become the hottest new place for the arts scene, but for what it is, West Congress has plenty to recommend it. This is a great, friendly neighborhood that’s an ideal choice for families, especially those who are just getting themselves established. It’s safe and peaceful, but it’s not so far outside the heart of the city as to seem light years away. Instead, you can easily enjoy the best Austin has to offer anytime, with just a quick trip up the street. I’d recommend having a car, and I’d also recommend looking to buy if you really want to put down roots here, as housing is still affordable, but the neighborhood will probably never fall out of fashion due to its relative proximity to hotter destinations, making real estate here a pretty solid investment.
Pros
  • Affordable housing
  • Family friendly
Cons
  • Some traffic from Hwy 71
Recommended for
  • Families with kids
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
2yrs+

"Blah... head north!"

West Congress residents are typically lower-income and generally less educated than in the rest of Austin, and it has a large Hispanic population. Like most big cities, many Austin neighborhoods tend to end up racially segregated and this is one of those areas. However, this doesn’t mean the area isn’t relatively safe and friendly, especially compared to some neighborhoods around I35. If you’re looking for affordable housing, you could do much worse than West Congress. South Congress lines the east border of the neighborhood, but not the cool, quirky part of the street. Mostly what you’ll find here is a sad stretch of storage units, car shops, and warehouse stores. The area is an affordable place to live, but not particularly clean, green, or interesting. If you don’t mind taking a quick drive north to somewhere like the Continental Club for your nightlife, this might be a fine place to get an apartment or find a small house. I personally prefer somewhere less blah and visually depressing, with more green space and personality. I do like to stop at Casa Maria for some super cheap and tasty breakfast tacos before swinging by South Austin People for some sweet homemade hippy soap!
Pros
  • Breakfast tacos!
  • Affordable housing
Cons
  • Far from Downtown
  • Some traffic from Hwy 71
Recommended for
  • Families with kids
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 2/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 4/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 4/5
2yrs+

"Standard for South of 71"

West Congress while nice is pretty standard for any neighborhood that is located south of Hwy 71. In fact, it greatly resembles East Congress and South Manchaca. Though all walks of life can find a home here, the population mostly consist of families due to the cheap housing prices. For what it would cost to rent or buy a one bedroom two miles north one could get two to four bedroom in West Congress. South Congress Ave. does run as one of the neighborhood borders, but the more interesting spots are a mile or so north past Hwy 71. This is not the trendiest of neighborhoods, but it is a convenient ride to Downtown, has affordable housing and has practically everything that a family needs within reach.

There are a couple of Austin eating favorites like Hill's Austin Cafe and Casa Maria, and Stassney Square is on the neighborhoods southern edge, which is good for clothes and vintage chopping. There are plenty of childcare facilities in the neighborhood for those that need to drop off their children during the day and there are several medical offices in the immediate area. The direct access to Hwy 71 makes driving in and out of the area easy, but rush hour traffic can sometimes drive congestion into the neighborhood. Houses are of moderate size with plenty of yard space and the streets echo a vibe of a typical suburban neighborhood, which suits some, but is less desirable for those that really want to experience Austin.
Pros
  • Family friendly
  • Affordable housing
Cons
  • Far from Downtown
  • Some traffic from Hwy 71
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees

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