Deep in the heart of lovely East Austin is a wonderful place called Plaza Saltillo – it’s one of our MetroRail stations and a beautifully designed public gathering space. Unfortunately, the landscaping and some fixtures at Plaza Saltillo have seen better days, and so in an effort to revitalize this cherished community asset, we are working with the City’s Parks & Recreation Department and community partners to give the Plaza a much-needed refresh.
The good folks at Keep Austin Beautiful recently awarded Capital Metro a Neighborhood Beautification Grant to replace the landscaping at the Plaza. Local Landscape Designer Ilse Frank has volunteered to spearhead this project.
Every year, the United Way coordinates a city-wide volunteer event called The Day of Caring, and through this program, Capital Metro requested volunteers for the Plaza Saltillo revitalization project. On September 11th, around 40 volunteers from Flextronics, the East Cesar Chavez neighborhood, the Austin Saltillo Sister Cities Association, Austin Parks & Rec, and Capital Metro braved a rainy morning to improve our community. For four muggy hours, volunteers dug out all of the planting beds, removed old irrigation lines, chopped out tree stumps, wrestled with dead bushes, and made a HUGE pile of dirt! At the end of the day, the muddy, smiling group paused to observe a MetroRail test train passing by. The day was a huge success, and a fantastic kick-off for the Plaza revitalization project.
Next step: plant native drought-resistant trees and plants to provide shade and make the Plaza a more inviting public place.
Many thanks are owed to our wonderful volunteers, the United Way, Texas Coffee Traders for the delicious coffee and tea, Keep Austin Beautiful, City of Austin Parks & Recreation Department (thanks for all the incredible help!) and our passionate volunteer extraordinaire, Ilse Frank.
Stay tuned for more updates on this project.