Get Around Town

Your guide to getting around during F1: Street closures, shuttles, helicopters and more

How to get around town during F1: Street closures, shuttles and more

Austin Photo: anthony_formula 1 qualifying_nov 2012_circuit
Take a helicopter out to COTA. Photo by Keith Rizzo Courtesy of Circuit of the Americas
Formula 1 map
Map of downtown Austin events this weekend. CapMetro/CapMetro.org
Austin Photo: anthony_formula 1 qualifying_nov 2012_circuit
Formula 1 map

With upwards of 250,000 people expected to participate in the Formula 1 festivities this weekend, Austinites should expect some serious downtown delays over the next few days. To prepare, we've created a guide of street closures — and how to get around them.

Street closures
Formula 1 Fan Fest, which is held at Republic Square Park, will close a number of downtown thoroughfares west of Congress Avenue. East of Congress, streets will be shut down to make way for shuttle stations heading out to Circuit of the Americas for the F1 U.S. Grand Prix.

Closures begin on October 29 and run through November 4, so make sure to add extra time and double check the closures before heading out. 

Congress Avenue between Seventh Street and 11th Street
Wednesday, 10 am-3:30 pm 

Sixth Street between Brazos Street and Southbound I-35 Frontage Road (Additional closures will be dictated by crowd size.)
Friday at 6 pm through Saturday 2 am. Please note that towing of vehicles parked on Sixth Street at cross streets including Brazos, San Jacinto, Trinity, Neches, Red River and Sabine will begin at 6 pm.

West Third Street between Guadalupe and San Antonio streets
Thursday at 6 am through Tuesday, November 3 at midnight

West Fourth Street between Congress Avenue and San Antonio Street
Thursday at 6 am through Tuesday, November 3 at midnight

Eighth Street, Ninth Street and 10th Street between Brazos and Colorado streets
Wednesday, 10 am-3:30 pm 

Colorado Street between West Third and West Fifth streets
Thursday at 6 am through Tuesday, November 3 at midnight
 
San Antonio Street between West Third and West Fourth streets
Thursday at 6 am through Tuesday, November 3 at midnight
 
Trinity Street between East Cesar Chavez and East Fourth Street
Friday at 6 am through Sunday at 8:30 pm
 
East Second Street between Trinity Street and San Jacinto Boulevard (Local traffic will be allowed to reach destinations within the closure area.)
Friday at 6 am through Sunday at 8:30 pm
 
East Third Street between Trinity Street and San Jacinto Boulevard (Local traffic will be allowed to reach destinations within the closure area.)
Friday at 6 am through Sunday at 8:30 pm
 
Neches Street between East Fourth and East Fifth streets (Local traffic will be allowed to reach destinations within the closure area.)
Friday at 6 am through Sunday at 8:30 pm

East Fifth Street between Neches Street and San Jacinto Boulevard (Partial closure — right lane will be closed.)
Friday at 6 am through Sunday at 8:30 pm

Getting around town
Buses and MetroRapid
Popular bus routes including the 3,4, 22 and Airport Flyer/100 will be re-routed due to the street closures. You can find a full list of route changes here

MetroRapid's route 801 will be extended until 2:30 am on October 31. Pricing and routes can be found here

MetroRail 
Friday: 6 am-2:30 am (Northbound only. Southbound service ends at 1 am.)
Saturday: 10:30 am-midnight (Service to all stations except Leander.)
Sunday: 8 am-7 pm (Service to all stations except Leander.)

Three-day MetroRail passes may be purchased for $16.50 through the CapMetro app.

Getting to the track
Cash parking will not be available at COTA. If you did not snag a parking permit, there are some great options for getting out to the track. 

Shuttle
Your best bet for getting to COTA is to take MetroRail to the Downtown Station on East Fourth Street. COTA shuttles pick up passengers on the west side of the Austin Convention Center on Trinity Street between East Third and East Fourth streets. Expect the shuttle to take anywhere from 45 minutes to two hours to get out to the track. Bring a book and enjoy the ride.

car2go
car2go will be lowering its daily weekend rate to $60 for 24 hours. Beginning on Thursday and running until Sunday at 11:59 pm, users can can keep the same car2go and qualify for the reduced daily rate. Use it to get to COTA — or just to get out of town.

Helicopter
As you may remember from years past, one of the ways Formula 1 differs from other Austin events is the increase in helicopter traffic. For $2,375 per person, clients can bypass traffic, trains, buses and shuttles and take a five-minute ride from downtown to the track. As of press time, COTA still had a few reservations available via its website