Formerly the home to Robert Mueller Municipal Airport, the Mueller neighborhood is a (fairly) new master-planned development that prides itself on sustainability. The community is home to many residential houses and apartments as well as places to shop, dine, exercise and play. Located east of I-35, south of 51st Street and north of Airport Boulevard, Mueller is close to the University of Texas Campus and just a couple miles from downtown.
AQUILA Senior Marketing Coordinator and long-time Mueller-area resident, Lauren Little, talks about the area and some of her favorite things to do in this month’s Q&A. To discover more about the area, check out our infographic at the bottom of this post.
Q: Can you tell us a bit about the Mueller area?
A: The Mueller development used to be the old airport and when that closed down in the late 90s they actually turned it into a master-planned community. There’s a ton of residential houses with multi-family and single family and there’s lot of young adults and young families in the area.
Q: What are some of your favorite restaurants to eat at in the area?
A: My favorite restaurant in Mueller is Contigo; it is just across the street from the actual Mueller development. It’s this cool outdoor restaurant and bar – and they’ve got a fire pit in the winter and it’s a great place to go. You can bring your dog, bring your kids, bring your family or your friends. They have by far my favorite burger in Austin!
There are also lots of other great restaurants in the area. There’s a new place called L’oca D’oro, which is an Italian place in the Aldrich Street area. They make all their pastas fresh in house, have housemade cheeses and a great wine list. It’s the perfect place to go with friends or on a date night.
Q: What are some things to do in Mueller?
A: There’s all kinds of things to do in the Mueller area. There’s a lot of things to do outside: they have a farmer’s market every Sunday, where many local farms and vendors come together. You can get fresh veggies, coffee and local fare. They also have a food truck park that’s open during the farmer’s market and all week long.
One of my favorite things to do is go run on the running paths – Mueller has bike trails and running paths that go throughout the whole development. There are tons of fitness options, with a Camp Gladiator already open, a new OrangeTheory Fitness facility and a barre studio in the works.
They also just opened a new Alamo Drafthouse in the Mueller area and I’m really excited about it. It’s something you can do any day of the week. The actual movie theater is upstairs and downstairs they have the “Barrel O’ Fun” , where they always have kids activities going on. We were there the other day and they had kids karaoke (which is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever seen but it was also amazing!) Definitely a great place to bring the kids.
Mueller also just got its first true bar in the area: B.D. Riley’s, which is an Irish Pub with craft beer and upscale pub menu located on Aldrich Street.
Q: Mueller is considered one of the most sustainable areas in Austin. Can you explain this a bit more?
A: One of the things that Mueller prides itself on is being a sustainable neighborhood. They dedicated 20% of the development area to parks and open spaces. They also made sure that the whole area is walkable; they put walking paths and bike trails throughout – if there’s a street, there’s a walking path and a bike path that goes with it! That way, we don’t have to be as dependent on cars in the neighborhood.
Q: What kind of retail is in the area?
A: There’s a ton of big box retail in the area, including a Best Buy, Home Depot, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Old Navy. There’s also one of the coolest H-E-B’s in Austin. It is huge and they have a a cafe attached to it, as well as a big selection of wines and fresh foods. I’ve never been to an H-E-B like it so it’s definitely one of my favorites.
The area is really growing; it seems that everyday something new is opening. There’s tons of apartments and new houses under construction. I think it’s just going to continue to grow and I can’t wait to see all of the new restaurants and activities they bring to the area!
Q: Does Mueller have any commercial office space?
A: Yes and there is a huge potential for more. Mueller was approved for over 3.5 million square feet of commercial office development. The area is home to The Diamond Building, a three-story mixed use building located in the Aldrich Street District with both retail and office space. Mueller is also home to over 150,000 SF of medical office space as well as the University of Texas’ Dell Pediatric Research Institute. Future office building sizes will range from 40,000 to over 500,000 SF.
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