North Loop – Austin, TX

A thriving mix of businesses, restaurants, and modest residential streets make the North Loop a popular area for Austin residents and visitors alike. Located only 3 miles north of the University of Texas campus and 5 miles north of the city center, the North Loop provides the convenience of an easy commute to the Round Rock area. Older, long-time residents mingle with young Austin transplants in this growing, energetic neighborhood.

Schools in North Loop

School data provided by GreatSchools

Restaurants & Nightlife

Austin foodies, home cooks, vegans and carnivores: the North Loop welcomes you with open arms. Seafood lovers in particular thrive in this neighborhood. In addition to housing award-winning Tyson Cole's Japanese restaurant Uchiko, in the North Loop you can also find Quality Seafood Market, a welcoming, hybrid restaurant and market that sells fresh fish, features daily specials, and serves great chowders and soups. Dine in or bring something home to cook; either way, you get some of the freshest seafood available in Austin. Vegans and non-vegans alike should try the fantastic tacos (breakfast or lunch) at Tex-Mex food truck The Vegan Nom. Be sure to save some room for a scoop of vegan ice cream at Sweet Ritual. Regulars say you can fool your non-vegan friends with Sweet Ritual's tasty dairy-free options, so give it a try. Don't let the casual counter service at House Pizzeria fool you for one minute. One of the best-kept secrets in the North Loop, this place makes sophisticated, thin-crust pies that can rival the offerings of five-star Italian restaurants. Try the simple yet knock-out potato and goat cheese pizza, or have an unforgettable dining experience with the Subterranean which features basil, rosemary roasted potatoes, caramelized onions and fontina cheese. After you've stuffed yourself at one of the North Loop's excellent eateries, you might consider stopping at local dive Barfly's for a stiff drink to aid the digestion. You can mingle with an eclectic crowd of locals as the jukebox plays an equally eclectic mix of music. If you find an upscale environment and craft cocktails more appealing, try drink.well. on 53rd. Try one of the cocktails, such as the Old Fox, or one of the many bourbons, including the elusive Pappy Van Winkle.

History & Culture

After the end of World War II, returning soldiers using the G.I. Bill to attend the University of Austin rapidly created high demand for affordable homes near the university. Small houses averaging 800 square feet were quickly built in the previously undeveloped open space about 3 miles north of campus, now known as the North Loop. Because it lay in the flightpath of the Haile Airport and then the Mueller Airport, for most of the 20th century, the North Loop was extremely affordable despite its close proximity to downtown. In 1999, however, Meuller shut down. No longer plagued by noise pollution, housing prices doubled overnight. Investors and affluent owners began restoring some of the 60-year-old homes, and the neighborhood began attracting new businesses. Rising costs unfortunately mean that some residents can no longer live in the area. The North Loop though continues to attract new residents and businesses.


North Loop residents often tend to local errands on foot or by bike as the neighborhood remains somewhat compact for a residential area. Drivers in the area benefit from the small residential streets where there is free parking and little-to-no traffic. Airport Boulevard and Koenig Lane provide quick routes around the area and access to Interstate 35. The high concentration of Capital Metro bus routes on Lamar and Koenig, and routes 7 and 10 running on Duval Street, delight public-transit users in the area. Because of the neighborhood's close proximity to the university and to downtown, biking and public transit both afford fast access to many areas of Austin. While idling taxis don't normally appear in the North Loop, residents and visitors can easily call a local cab company for a pick up or drop off in the area. In addition to a number of local taxi companies, Uber and Lyft also operate in Austin, giving North Loop residents plenty of transportation options.


Due to its desirable location, and balanced mix of business and residential areas, the cost of living sits slightly higher in the North Loop than in the rest of Austin. The average rental rate for a one-bedroom apartment goes for $846 per month. Gas prices, on the other hand, remain lower than the national average by 4.6 percent. Because of its central location, reaching other areas via public transit can be quite inexpensive for North Loop residents, costing $1.00 per local ride or $2.00 for a day pass. The typical price of a beer at a local pub costs $5 a pint.


Travel down North Lamar and North Loop Boulevard to find some of the small strip-mall shopping characteristic of central Austin neighborhoods such as the North Loop. A high concentration of vintage stores causes thrifters and retro-fashion lovers to flock to the North Loop. Those looking for a great deal should head to the Texas Thrift Store or Savers. For some unique vintage furniture at thrift store prices, check out the collection at Room Service Vintage. Blue Velvet, a mid-price vintage and consignment shop, claims a space in a strip mall on West North Loop where you can spend a lovely afternoon. After searching through the high-quality vintage items at Blue Velvet, go next door to Breakaway Records, and pick out something for your LP collection. You might even find a special gem in the bargain bins full of used, well-playing records. When you're ready for a break, walk to the other end of the strip for a coffee and pastry at Epoch Coffee, a roomy, comfortable spot favored by locals for working and meeting up with friends. When you're looking for gifts in the North Loop, check off every name on your list, including those who are difficult to buy for, at Zinger Hardware & General Merchant on North Lamar. More than a hardware store, this locally owned shop features a vast assortment of gourmet foods, barware and kid's toys. You'll also find a wide variety of unusual and beautiful home decor and lawn and garden items here. Before you leave, grab a funny novelty shirt for yourself or a pretty sweater for your pet. With an H-E-B location on both 41st and 51st Streets, North Loop residents never have to travel far for convenient, affordable groceries. While the North Loop hosts no farmers markets, residents can quickly reach two nearby, year-round markets: the Sustainable Food Center Farmers' Market at The Triangle and the Mueller Farmers' Market. Locals enjoy fresh produce at the SFC Farmers' Market at 46th and Lamar on Wednesday afternoons, while the Mueller Farmers' Market, operated by the local non-profit F2M Texas, opens each Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.


With two basketball courts, two tennis courts, a shady playground, picnic tables and a comfortably sized swimming pool, it's no wonder locals love the kid- and dog-friendly Shipe Park. Convenient, free on-street parking makes this family friendly park even more attractive, but some locals choose to walk or bike over for a laid back afternoon at Shipe. Shipe Park also hosts popular events, such as an annual pool party and "Movies in the Park" nights. The only complaint locals make concerns the park's limited swimming season. The pool, which costs a small fee for entry, closes at the end of August, but Austin stays hot enough for swimming deep into Autumn. When touring parks in the area, be sure to check out Bruning Green. Volunteers from a local neighborhood association reclaimed this overgrown-traffic island at East 51st and Bruning Lane, transforming it into a free public space by planting trees and native plants, and building a footpath for visitors, children and pets to enjoy. The North Loop doesn't house any exercise-centric parks, but local runners often enjoy the quiet residential streets in the area.
West Koenig Flats
115 W Koenig Ln, Austin, TX 78751
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5400 N LAMAR Blvd, Austin, TX 78751
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105 W 51st St, Austin, TX 78751
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Avesta Lamar Station
5200 N Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX 78751
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