As the new Moody Center comes to life, homegrown tech giant, Dell Technologies, announced it is the premier founding partner for the new venue that will replace the Frank C. Erwin Center for Austin events and Austin entertainment.
The Moody Center, located at 2001 Robert Dedman Drive, will be the new home for University of Texas events, including graduation and basketball games, along with acting as a multi-purpose facility for the city that will serve for concerts and other events.
Through the partnership, just outside a section of the facility will be Dell Technologies Plaza, a place for post-game shows and community events. Dell will also donate tickets for Longhorns basketball games to the Boy & Girls Club of the Austin area.
It's been a long time coming for the Moody Center, which was first announced in December 2018; it broke ground one year later. It has since started booking shows for its debut in 2022, starting with pop sensation The Weeknd for April 2022. The facility, named after the Moody Foundation, will be able to expand to 15,000 seats.
In a live virtual media conversation with Senior Vice President of Global Brand and Experiential at Dell Liz Matthews, C3 Presents Partner Charles Attal said he sees the Moody Center changing Austin from a place world-class bands used to skip on tours to being the world-class venue they book multiple dates for.
Matthews said aside from the Moody Center maintaining Austin's music scene, it was important to Dell that it be an inclusive environment that will host women's basketball games, along with men's.
In the same conversation, UT's Minister of Culture Matthew McConaughey, who helped up with the vision of the facility, said the Moody Center is making wins—furthering the women's basketball program and bringing big-time bands to Austin—sustainable in the city for years to come. McConaughey quoted UT Athletic Director Chris Del Conte in what he see's the Moody Center being: "It should be the first place that a world-class band should want to come play, and the last place that a visiting basketball wants to come play."
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A big-money bird has been stolen from a northwest Austin pet store.
Kelsey Fernandez, the owner of a $6,000 sulphur and citron-crested cockatoo named Lemon Grab, said the emotional support animal was taken from the Gallery of Pets store, around closing time on Sunday.
"I've struggled with mental illness my entire life, and ever since I got him I've been doing so much better," Fernandez told Austonia.
The $6k cockatoo is young and will starve unless he is fed by hand, Fernandez said.
In a surveillance video, a man appears to have something under his shirt as he and two others exit the business around the same time the store believes that Lemon Grab was stolen.
Fernandez said a report has been filed with the Austin Police Department with an $1,000 reward for his return.
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Introverts and personal space lovers may not want to make the move to Austin anytime soon: The Texas capital saw a bigger increase in one-bedroom rent prices than almost any other U.S. city in April, according to a Rent.com report.
Austin's one-bedroom rent has more than doubled—a 112% increase—from April 2021 to 2022, the report said. Only Oklahoma City saw a higher year-over-year increase with a 133% jump.
Austin also had the fourth-highest increase in two-bedroom rent, with a 50% increase in the past year. The city joined a nationwide trend where rents were up 8.3% year-over-year across the U.S, a trend exacerbated by a 6.2% increase in inflation in the same time period.
But "not everyone is experiencing inflation the same way," Redfin Deputy Chief Economist Taylor Marr said in the report, and a brunt of the load has gone to cities with more move-ins. While over 90% of state rental markets increased in the last year, that jump was seen most in Sun Belt states, including Texas, Arizona and Florida.
Even with breakneck increases in rent, however, Austin's rent prices still haven't cracked the top 10: the city's one-bedroom apartments are the 12th most expensive in the nation with an average price of $2,918. Meanwhile, its two-bedrooms fall behind Texas cities Frisco, Dallas and Plano and come out 34th on the list with a $2,302 average monthly rent.
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