Austin’s annual South by Southwest (SXSW) is March 8-17th for 2013 and is the place to be to learn about emerging technologies and to see some original music and independent films.
If you are a company or vendor who is planning on needing SXSW venue rentals, space is tight so it’s important to get the process started early. Finding space is one challenge, navigating the city of Austin’s permitting process is another. Below are a few tips to follow when looking for that perfect venue space.
- Get Local Help – There are lot’s of commercial real estate brokers who know the downtown market well that can help you find space. There are also a new crop of temporary site scene consultants that help companies pick good venue sites and obtain the permits required by the city.
- Do Your Research Early – Send a company representative to Austin AT LEAST 6 months before SXSW and have them walk the streets of downtown Austin to get a feel for the vibe and to learn what is happening where. Find out who the bar and restaurant owners are as well as the parking lot owners to see what kind of set up they have to offer and to discuss your possible interest in leasing out their space. If you don’t have something locked in by Febuary 1st then you are too late because the city of Austin has cut-off dates for the issuing of temporary permits.
- Expect to Pay – Temporary rental space in downtown Austin comes at a price, especially during SXSW. In most cases expect to pay $10,000 to $25,000 a day.
- SXSW Venue Hotspots – Tend to be around the Austin Convention Center and the Rainey Street District. Parking lots have also been popular places to host music events however you have to make sure they are next to some buildings in order to have amplified sound.
City of Austin Tips & Deadlines
- Temporary use permits (TUPs) without sound are 10 days before SXSW begins.
- Temporary with sound for one day is 21 days before the event however 30 days in advance for multiple days.
- Temporary use permits are only given for commercially or industrial zoned properties and can only be given for 3 days per week or a total of 5 days per month.
- They expect to have an increase in TUPs this year. In 2011 that number was 69. In 2012 the number of TUPs increased to 96