We believe that everyone deserves access to clean, beautiful, safe outdoor spaces. Beautify Austin is our large-scale initiative to increase access to the outdoors, one community at a time.

Beautify Austin projects focus on creating and improving public green spaces in targeted geographic zones for three months at a time, with follow-up projects for a one year period. Projects include planting trees, sowing native seeds, organizing large-scale cleanups, removing invasive species, and building gardens. By working in, with, and for communities, we aim to transform them from the inside out.

March 2017 – May 2017: Sims Elementary School

sims elementary plan
children working on school lawn

Over three months we worked with the community and volunteers to create a beautiful native rain garden to help mitigate flooding, beautify the school campus, provide food sources for native pollinators, and serve as an interactive learning tool for Sims students. The rain garden installation is possible in partnership with Keep Austin Beautiful, Sims Elementary School, UT Engineering students, Environmental and Water Resources Institute Austin Chapter and City of Austin Watershed Protection Department. Learn more about rain gardens.

sims elementary before after front view
sims elementary rain garden before after

December 2016-February 2017: Paredes Middle School

paredes school update plans

Keep Austin Beautiful focused on installing a permaculture garden. With the help of the school community, volunteers and Eagle Scouts, we have worked to transform the garden into a space that is low maintenance, highly accessible, and fruitful.

paredes middle school before and after

The project started by replacing raised garden beds with berms and swales to enhance passive capture of rainwater. New gutters on the tool shed and chicken coop guide also rainwater to a 500-gallon barrel, used to sustain the garden during dry periods. The plan also added a meditation garden where students can take a break from school’s more stressful moments. The garden is now a place to learn, meditate, and snack on wild foods, creating an inviting and sustainable outdoor space for school and community use.

Recent Follow Up Project: Barbara Jordan Elementary School

barbara jordan elementary before and after

The library garden at Barbara Jordan Elementary got a complete face lift this fall during the Beautify Austin follow up projects. The garden was tamed into a space with a delineated pathway lined with manicured and mulched trees. The garden now also touts a healthy pond with mosquito fish, an outdoor classroom area that has now been preserved for years to come with frosty waterproof paint and new native plants that will survive happily on a low maintenance diet perfectly suited for a busy school community.

Previous Beautify Austin locations:Quail Creek Park, East Williamson Creek, and Barbara Jordan Elementary School.

Proposals for future Beautify Austin sites are currently being accepted.