Public access maintained at the Woods of Westlake greenbelt; paid parking could be enacted

The Woods of Westlake homeowners association has reported public intoxication and other safety hazards at its Barton Creek Greenbelt trailhead. (Amy Rae Dadamo/Community Impact)
The Woods of Westlake homeowners association has reported public intoxication and other safety hazards at its Barton Creek Greenbelt trailhead. (Amy Rae Dadamo/Community Impact)

The Woods of Westlake homeowners association has reported public intoxication and other safety hazards at its Barton Creek Greenbelt trailhead. (Amy Rae Dadamo/Community Impact)

Visitors utilizing the Barton Creek Greenbelt entry point on Scottish Woods Trail will soon notice several policy changes following reports of hazardous behavior by surrounding Woods of Westlake residents.

A petition drafted by the Woods of Westlake Homeowners Association in early June describing years of dangerous behavior and potential ecological damage by visitors is approaching 1,000 supporters.

The area is frequently congested with daily greenbelt guests—a trend that has been amplified by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, according to Christie Schultz, the interim president for the WOW HOA.

The trailhead, referred to as Trails End or the Hill of Life, was indefinitely closed by the city of Austin along with other greenbelt entries July 2 in response to a recent surge in coronavirus cases. When the access point reopens to the public it could feature a paid parking system, increased signage and no-parking zones, per a newly launched program released by the Austin Transportation Department on July 13.

The Woods of Westlake Integrated Parking Pilot seeks to maintain the greenbelt’s public access while alleviating residents' concerns, according to a newsletter released by ATD.


Physical parking meters will not be installed on Scottish Woods Trail, said Sam Haynes, a public information specialist for ATD. Visitors will utilize contactless payment through Park ATX, Austin’s mobile payment system.

ATD did not explicitly announce rates but noted the program will follow progressive parking rates, meaning the cost depends on the length of each parking session.

WOW residents, including those on Scottish Woods Trail, Scottish Woods Cove, Shannon Oaks Trail, Wild Briar Pass and Surrey Hill Drive, can continue to park free of charge by registering for digital permits.

On-street parking will be available for residents only on Scottish Woods Cove, Shannon Oaks Trail, Wild Brair Pass and Surrey Hill Drive.

Due to the ongoing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, ATD has not established an exact timeline for the parking program. However, the neighborhood may see increased signage by the end of July.
By Amy Rae Dadamo
Amy Rae Dadamo is the reporter for Lake Travis-Westlake, where her work focuses on city government and education. Originally from New Jersey, Amy Rae relocated to Austin after graduating from Ramapo College of New Jersey in May 2019.


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