Austin secures 292-room hotel lease as coronavirus quarantine resource

The Crowne Plaza Hotel is located at 6121 N. I-35 in North Central Austin. (Courtesy Google Maps)
The Crowne Plaza Hotel is located at 6121 N. I-35 in North Central Austin. (Courtesy Google Maps)

The Crowne Plaza Hotel is located at 6121 N. I-35 in North Central Austin. (Courtesy Google Maps)

Austin has finalized a lease on the 292-room Crowne Plaza hotel off I-35 in North Central Austin and will use the facility for "quarantine and isolation" purposes, according to a memo from city staff to Austin's mayor and City Council.

The city's real estate office completed the negotiations for the hotel at 6121 N. I-35 last week, according to the March 27 memo from Assistant City Manager Christopher Shorter. Shorter said Austin's emergency operations center would operate the hotel as a quarantine and isolation ward as part of the city's coronavirus response.

"These efforts have begun and will be expanded as needed in the coming days and weeks," Shorter said.

The information came in the bottom half of a lengthy memo focused exclusively on the city's response to the coronavirus as it relates to the homeless population. Shorter did not say whether the space would be used exclusively for those experiencing homelessness. Shorter did say the city was expected to finally close on purchasing the 87-room Rodeway Inn on April 17, five months after City Council approved an $8 million plan to convert the motel into a homeless shelter.

This is a developing story; check back for updates.


By Christopher Neely
Christopher Neely is Community Impact's Austin City Hall reporter. A New Jersey native, Christopher moved to Austin in 2016 following years of community reporting along the Jersey Shore. His bylines have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Baltimore Sun, USA Today and several other local outlets along the east coast.


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