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Public alcohol consumption is now legal in 5 East Austin neighborhoods

Public consumption of alcohol is now legal in all of East Austin, including several neighborhoods where it was previously illegal to do so.


Action taken by City Council Thursday updated city code to allow responsible public drinking in these neighborhoods:

  • Central East Austin
  • Chestnut
  • Rosewood
  • Riverside
  • Montopolis

Yes, that means that it's legal to drink alcohol in most parts of the city.


The areas highlighted are the only spots where public consumption of alcohol is prohibited, but Council is amendeding city code to allow it in areas 2, 5 and 6.(City of Austin)


The law, enacted and updated throughout the 1990s, still prohibits public consumption in three portions of Austin: downtown, South Lamar Boulevard and The Drag near campus.

Council Member Natasha Harper-Madison, whose District 1 includes portions of East Austin where public consumption was outlawed, said there was no legitimate reason for excluding her district from drinking responsibly in public. Statistics compiled by city staff reveal a disproportionate amount of related citations were given to minority offenders.

The change in law was first proposed by Harper-Madison back in December. For a full history of the public consumption laws, see the city staff report outlining the approvals of each designated area where drinking was prohibited.

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