Help Us Help the Pool – Urgent

Friends, the General Grounds Improvements, as approved in the Master Plan, have been delayed by two years, but are finally in the home stretch for approval.  We need your help to get them over the last hurdle!  PLEASE ATTEND as many of the following meetings as you can:

Waterfront Planning Advisory Board
6:00 pm Monday, February 11
Boards and Commissions Room, City Hall
301 W. 2nd Street

Codes and Ordinances Committee
6:00 pm Tuesday, February 19
Location TBA

Environmental Board
6:00 pm Wednesday, February 20
Council Chambers, City Hall
301 W. 2nd Street

Planning Commission
6:00 pm Tuesday, February 26th
Council Chambers, City Hall
301 W. 2nd Street

The Grounds Improvement projects are so important!  Among the work to be done:

  • Planting of over 100 trees
  • An improved irrigation system to keep grass and trees alive
  • A pump to supply water from Barton Springs for irrigation and to clean the pool
  • Run-off control to prevent sediment from polluting salamander habitat
  • ADA access from the south parking lot to the pool for the first time
  • An improved parking area (no more dust bowl!)

For a more detailed description of the projects, click this link to download a PDF: Grounds Improvement Project Memo

The design emphasizes the natural beauty of the pool, using native species and younger trees to preserve the shade canopy as older trees die out.  We can’t let these much-needed projects be delayed any longer!  To find out more about how you can help, email

Bonds for the Bathhouse Report

There is still time for you to tell the City Council that you support including the BSP bathhouse restorations in the November bond election!

The decision process is still ongoing, and some council members are interested in adding the bathhouse back into the bond package – they need to hear from you!  The more emails they get, the more likely they are to go to bat for the Pool.

Click the links below to email the mayor and council members. Click here for some points you can make in your email (pdf).  Click here to see our previous post on the Bonds for the Bathhouse.

Tonight – Tell City Council to Fund the Bathhouse Restoration!

Today, Thursday at 4:00 pm or later is the public’s opportunity to request that there be Bonds for the Bathhouse to restore the Barton Springs bathhouse as laid out in the Master Plan. The City Council will be discussing the proposed 2012 bond election as Item #117 on the agenda.
Come to City Hall and tell your Council Members you want the bathhouse project restored into November 2012 Bond Package. There are many advocates in this city coming out in force in support of affordable housing, money for roads, money for cultural art projects – we need you to speak up for the pool!
In order to make sure our voices are heard too, please:
  • Come to City Hall tonight and sign in and speak.
  • Email the city council members and tell them you want bond funds to restore the bathhouse!
  • Spread the word to your friends and other members of FBSP.
Click here for some talking points that share our common goal with other park advocacy groups in Austin, some individual points specific to BSP, or make your own talking points on why the bathhouse should be funded.
The item (#117) is currently set to be heard on or after 4:00 p.m., but may be moved until on or after 6:00 p.m.
For the latest information regarding timing, follow @austintexasgov on Twitter, or view the meeting live on Channel 6 or streamed online at

Tonight – Help Us Move the General Grounds Improvements Forward

Tonight, the Parks and Recreation Board and Environmental Board Joint Committee will discuss the general grounds improvements that are under consideration.  FBSP will be there to urge the City to move forward on these south side pool-area improvements, and we hope you will too!   The new amenities under consideration are:

  • A new fence: the prison-yard look of current chain link-with-barbed wire fence would be replaced with a fence made of wire mesh or iron bars.  It will be more attractive, and sturdier to resist vandals who cut the chain link to sneak into the pool.
  • A new gate: the new fence would be entered through a new, decorative wrought iron gate, between stone columns designed to match those on the Barton Springs Road entry to Zilker Park.  We believe this new gate would be a lovely, fitting entrance to the crown jewel of Austin.
  • A new ticket booth: a larger, more attractive and more comfortable and air-conditioned ticket booth would be built, with insulation and double pane windows to more efficiently keep out the heat.
  • More trees included in pool grounds: the current fenceline will be moved out to include the majestic pecan trees now just outside the pool grounds.  This will provide more shade inside the pool.  It will also make room for the proposed ADA trail that will descend through the wooded area to the diving board, providing access to the pool for disabled south side patrons.

Click here to see photos and drawings of the proposed work.  These improvements have been delayed too long already, let’s move forward to make the south side entrance a beautiful, welcoming gateway to the pool for all patrons!

The meeting will take place TONIGHT, Thursday, June 28, at 6:15 pm at the Zilker Botanical Gardens Auditorium (2220 Barton Springs Rd.).  Come out and show your support!

MONDAY – Come Support the Master Plan!


This is so important: it’s time to show your support for the Barton Springs Pool Master Plan!
We need YOU to come to the joint Environmental / Parks and Recreation Board Committee meeting next Monday, May 21 at 6:15 pm.

If at all possible, please get there early and sign up to speak in favor of the general grounds improvement projects approved in the Master Plan.
The Joint Committee will be discussing the improvements to the south side of the pool, including:
  • a new ornamental perimeter fence (no more chain link and barb wire!)
  • moving the fenceline outward to incorporate more trees and lawn into the pool area, and also allow for an ADA-accessible trail
  • a new and improved ticket booth, replacing the current small shack
  • a new ornamental entrance gate

If you would like to see these amenities come to the south side of the pool, please attend this meeting!

The meeting is at the Austin Nature and Science Center, 301 Nature Center Drive.  Click here for a map.

We’ll see you there!

President’s Report

Master Plan and General Grounds Improvements Update: Report on the Parks and Recreation Board and Environmental Board Joint Committee Meeting

by Gary Beyer

On Monday, February 6, the City of Austin provided a status update on the General Grounds Improvement Project, Barton Springs trees, and the Master Plan Short-Termed Projects. The General Grounds Improvement Project continues toward its start date of fall of this year. Great News! The number of trails has been reduced so that now the original trail from the south gate to the diving board has been eliminated. This will allow for the infilling of the gully and restoration of the critical root zone of the large pecan tree nearby. All direct traffic to the diving board beach will be through the area known as the South Woods, an area formerly located outside the fence. The trail through the South Woods will be ADA accessible. There will be another ADA trail from the south gate to the memorial area, but it has been changed from concrete to decayed granite. These improvements will reduce the impervious cover and will not detract from the natural, open aesthetic uncluttered with lots of manmade distractions.
Continue reading “President’s Report”