The Wheel Deal
The Mueller community is always growing. Tucked next to blocks of new housing development, the new Mueller Southeast Greenway Skate Park and Pump Track is made for “all wheels.” Thanks to the way the neighborhood is growing, despite the construction, the new park is both relatively quiet and easily accessible. It is also the farthest north of any similar structure throughout Austin.
The new skate park and pump track (picture a wavy, paved BMX track on a very small scale) extend the greenways, which bound the entire southern side of the Mueller neighborhood with a meticulously landscaped park — one of the most manicured in Austin — featuring several statues and learning opportunities.
“It's very friendly; the radiuses, and the curves … the angles of the banks,” said senior design project manager Kanten Russell of New Line Skateparks, one of the collaborators at the grand opening on Friday, October 21. “Even the heights of the grind ledges and bars … are all very fun sized. But if you're more advanced, and you want to get more technical on some of these features, you can. So it really is a great space for people of all skill levels.”
With sustainability in mind, the team chose to build with concrete. It also means the park is “rideable for all wheels,” including wheelchairs. Russell points out that skaters and riders don’t have to push much to keep up momentum, but finding the right balance to glide through is still a great workout.
The small concrete park is visible in its entirety from most angles, making it easy to keep tabs on new and younger skaters without getting in the way. A pergola shades an area with seating for spectators next to the bowl. Wide, flat green space around the park is a great place to hang out nearby with fewer concerns about seeing in.
Although the park is in a residential setting, it is free for anyone to use. On Opening Day, there were young children, teenagers, and adults riding without getting in each other’s way — but Russell recommends that adults come in the early morning to enjoy a little more space.
A press release mentions that the project “helps complete the acres of public perimeter parks accessible to residents and nonresidents alike.” During the opening remarks, speakers referenced a plan of at least 15 years, including District 9 council member Kathie Tovo.
“Every time I come here to Mueller, I think about how this community was created, and it was created from a public process,” said Tovo. “A gathering together of the community to say, ‘How do we want to use this city-owned land? How can we use it to really benefit families, not just now, but into the future?’ … We need parks that are not just appealing to young folks, but are also going to be great for adults, as well as for teens.”
The new skate park and pump track are open now at the Mueller Southeast Greenway, at 3061 Zach Scott St.